We didn't move to Tottenham with a notion that there'd be a lot to do here- there isn't, and in some ways that was the appeal. It's about as far out of central London as you can be whilst not having to commute per se; it's where the buses end, it's where some of the rent is affordable. Coffee shops and knitting circles and branches of Whole Foods are definitely still two miles down the road, a safe distance away, but I do have to admit when I saw that Beavertown Brewery had moved nearby this year, I was seriously excited. Something walkable! Something to tempt friends into Zone 3 with! Beer!
Rounding the corner of the back of an industrial estate, a five minute walk from Tottenham Hale station, along the side of a reservoir, you get to Beavertown. You can chart this brewery's relocations with everyone else's- beginning in De Beauvoir, then Hackney Wick, and now moving on up to the outskirts. The tap room is open most Saturdays at varying times (check Twitter) and if you've ever wondered what it's like actually organising a piss-up in a brewery, the answer is FUN. My two Saturdays spent there have both knocked me out for the rest of the weekend, but when the IPAs and vegan food are this great, I'm not sure I can complain.
Our first trip consisted of my boyfriend and me doing a recce a few months ago before forcing friends to travel to "virtually IKEA". I became aware we were entering cloud nine territory within about two minutes of arriving, due to the presence of pizza, Northern Soul played on part-time manned decks and a passion fruit beer, Passion Phantom, that sounded (and turned out to be) amazing. Voodoo Ray's was the resident food stand for the weekend, and so I ate a vegan slice (crisp, delicious, and no cheese-shaped gap in flavour) alongside three glorious half pints and a few super spicy Soffle's chips, which are now also made in a nearby warehouse, and make a pretty perfect accompaniment with a Beavertown half.
Second time around we came with reinforcements. Colder now, the beanbag games and wooden pallets outside were left alone as most of the crowd huddled at the benches inside or played table tennis to try and keep warm. Drink more beer is my main survival tip for keeping warm in breweries, and it works.
Chef Perez Cocina's Colombian Street Kitchen empanadas also helped in a big way: delicious vegan and gluten free polenta empanadas and gorgeous Colombian pickle. While I was ordering three, I got talking to owner Esteban Pérez, who also made me a vegan tamales to try before delving into empanadas. The mix of the polenta tamales and oyster mushrooms steamed in a banana leaf was absolutely delicious, as were the crispy empanadas I could barely manage more than one of after the huge tamales. Dipped in the pickle and alongside a couple of Beavertown half pints, they're stodgy and crispy and warm, and everything comforting you need sat in a chilly brewery miles out of town.
Full and merry, we meandered back to our flat in the dark with plans for a disco nap before heading out again, only to fall fast asleep for the rest of the night, way too full and content to remember to set an alarm or get up for another 12 hours. Heaven.