When thinking of areas where it is a struggle to find a decent, non-violent, non-Weatherspoons pub with good beers that is not a café… or the cinema, Hackney Central tops the list. It was a walk up to The Prince George or The Spurstow… or The Pembury (all good choices!) but, no more, Hackney-ites! No more!
Our very own cosy ale-house has arrived, rendering the short walk up to other pubs obsolete. Hello Cock Tavern!
There are usually cute / sad, but brutish dogs in there, so it gets my vote immediately, but it also has some great, local beers and a cosy, local atmosphere.
The bar stretches along with oodles of real ale and cider taps to choose from. A good way to go about this would be to sample half pints, or the friendly, beardy bar staff are happy to offer tasters or advice if you’re not sure what to have.
The Smoked Porter springs to mind as a dark and sultry brown ale with shallow chocolate tones and beery depth of flavour. It’s the kind of thing that puts people off sugary lagers, never to look back. Speaking of chocolate, they house an excellent chocolate stout. Hackney Brewery is well represented as re many others!
They serve “meat” according to the sign. This includes a cabinet of “meat”, pork pies, scotch eggs and, ahem, veggie scotch eggs. Which are actually rather tasty and served with tangy, bright piccalilli.
The ale revolution seems to be in full swing, but I hope it is more than that. If you think about it, local breweries who give a shit about how their beer is enjoyed, benefiting local independent businesses – there’s real substance in that. Oh, and i’ve just noticed on Twitter that they have their own microbrewery… @howlinghops.