At the start of the eighteenth century London had almost 200 breweries producing close on 2 million barrels of beer every year, making the mighty metropolis the brewing capital of the world. By 1976, when the once-mighty Whitbread halted production at their famous Chiswell Street headquarters, there were only nine brewers left in the capital.
The story of brewing in London is the story of the rise and fall of an industry that gave the world such famous beer styles as porter, stout, brown ale and India pale ale. It is a story of innovation and growth, and ultimately of decline and homogenisation.
This fully illustrated book explores the colourful and fascinating liquid history of brewing in the capital, from the glory years when the likes of Barclay Perkins, Charrington, Truman's and Whitbread were household names, through to the dark days of the 1970s and 1980s when the industry's decline looked terminal.
But this is a story with a happy ending for, as Brewing in London reveals, the noble art of beer making is once again thriving in the capital as an ever-increasing number of micro and craft brewers have transformed the city into one of the most exciting beer destinations on the planet.
Johnny Homer is a journalist, broadcaster and brewery tour guide. He was born and bred in central London and over the years has written for a variety of newspapers, magazines and websites. He has also been a staff journalist with Oracle Teletext, as editor of the daily BeatBox music magazine, the Press Association and Northcliffe Media, the latter as Sports Editor of the Canterbury Times series of newspapers. He is a regular and long-standing contributor to BBC London's Robert Elms show.