A little while ago, we tried to work out how many craft beer bars there are in the UK. We got stuck, but perhaps you can help.
For starters, here are some (to us) obvious examples, first in chains:
- Brewdog bars × 22
- Bloomsbury Leisure × 4.5
- Craft Beer Co pubs × 6
- Draft House × 8
- North Group × 6 (ish)
- Pivni × 4.5
- Utobeer — The Rake, Tap East
- Zero Degrees × 4
Then some one-offs:
- Bristol — Small Bar, Beer Emporium, Beerd
- Edinburgh — The Hanging Bat
- Exeter — Beer Cellars
- Falmouth — Hand
- Lancaster — Tap House
- Leeds — Mr Foley’s, Tapped, Northern Monk Refectory
- Manchester — Port Street Beer House, The Font, 57 Thomas Street
- Newton Abbot — Teign Cellars
- Tunbridge Wells — Fuggles Beer Cafe
And as for London, Des de Moor’s London’s Best Beer, Pubs & Bars listed 270 establishments of which around 148 are classified either as bars or ‘contemporary pubs’. (As opposed to ‘traditional pubs’.) At a glance, about 100 of those are what we would call (give or take some debate) ‘craft beer bars’.
So there’s about 170 before we’ve even started to rack our brains, so we’d guess that means there are actually more like 250, but that’s still not really a lot, nationwide.
Are we missing any obvious examples in your neck of the woods? (Yes, obviously — tell us below.)
And do you have any better guesses, or cleverer ways to calculate, the total number?
- ‘But how do you define a craft beer bar?’ This is a legitimate question — where’s the line between style bar and craft beer bar? Or ‘contemporary pub’ (© Des de Moor) and pub-pub? Try this: If we turned up in your town and asked someone carrying a Pete Brown paperback under their arm for directions to the nearest craft beer bar, where would they send us?
- ‘I dislike the term “craft beer bar” because…’ [Patronisingly] OK, great — we’re going to write that on this Post-It Note and come back to it at the end of the session.
- ‘I have a quirky take on the definition of “craft beer” and am therefore going to suggest a Sam Smith’s pub in Bolton.’ Have you considered writing for the Ironic Review?