Drinking in The City has become more enticing with the opening of Long Arm Worship Street, a microbrewery based just moments away from Liverpool Street and Moorgate stations. The Worship Street site offers a menu of six rotating craft beers based on style, all brewed in-house.
An ancillary site to The Long Arm Brewing Company’s original Ealing brewery – which focuses on brewing their core range – beers served at Worship Street are brewed to be enjoyed in situ. They brew once a day adjacent to the bar, where six 500l fermenter tanks stand in the far corner. The core beers, currently made up of Birdie Flipper red ale, Lucky Penny pale ale, IPA OK and Shadow Wolf smoked porter (with a pilsner and a session IPA to be added soon), are available in bottles. Their taps are linked up directly to the fermenter tanks; this is all part of their Tank Fresh concept, which allows them to serve beer with no packaging and zero carbon emissions. The beer is served fresh, unfiltered, unrefined and completely unadulterated.
Long Arm’s Brewing and Operations Manager, Guillermo Alvarez Schulenburg, is a master of fluid dynamics and his direct-from-tank serving system has garnered attention from both Big Beer and independent breweries. His background in biochemistry equips him with an understanding of the mechanics and brewing comes instinctively to him – he’s a third generation brewer and has worked with The Rebel Brewing Company and Electric Bear Brewing Co.
In addition to Tank Fresh beer, Worship Street will soon see the launch of another innovative system – a process known as aquaponics, which marries aquaculture and hydroponics to create a natural recycling process. Fish eat spent grain from brewing and fertilise plants, the plants then return purified water to the fish. The fertiliser is used to grow herbs and vegetables, all of which will feature on the Worship Street food menu.
In addition to these innovations, Worship Street will be making extracts used in both their beer and cocktails and distilling their own spirits. Members of staff are continuously trained as new beers are put on to keep apace. Although the recipes change, the menu is style-driven and not branded under Long Arm, so you can expect to find a lager, a pale, a session strength beer, an IPA, a dark beer and a wild card – on our visit, this was an surprising rice beer made with Sorachi Ace and Mosaic hops with additions of lemon, orange peel, green tea and lotus flower.
Each batch of beer lasts about a week and no hop contracts means that the brewing team get to trial new and experimental hops as they become available. Recipes will continue to evolve, but Guillermo has already developed over a hundred. All of the beers that were poured on our visit were impressive, with the East Coast IPA proving balanced, bursting with mango aromas and flavours from Mosaic hops. The session pale was huge on flavour and highly drinkable despite its 3.6% ABV.
All of this is served up in a modern, sleek venue with a mixed City crowd. If you saunter up to the bar and ask for a lager, you’re guaranteed to get something clean and fresh, but if you’re more adventurous, you might find yourself enjoying a bock or rice beer. The food is also inspired by the beer, with dishes marinated in or paired with it, and will soon feature the by-products of the in-house aquaponics farm.
This is the first of many Long Arm sites proposed, as Guillermo has his sights set on one in West London and several outside of the city within two years. The concept is sound and should prove successful when it’s rolled out provided that his passion can be replicated.
As for the Worship Street arm, it’s a shining beacon in an area of London that is otherwise devoid of good craft beer options.