From the offset, the tasteful decor comes across as modern and welcoming, simple but slick, with low hanging lights and couches that it’s more than easy to settle into in an instant.
The main attraction of the bar isn’t the fine furnishing though, nor even the free pool, as crazy as that may seem. Rather, it’s the 70 hand-selected beers on offer from a total of 39 different countries. Put simply, the selection is outrageously good.
In our introductory session there, we managed to make our way through beers from Kenya, Namibia, Brazil and Canada, as well as sampling the excellent home brew ‘Beer and Skittles’. All reasonably priced as well.
On request, you can pick up a World Beer Tour card – which in our excitement we forgot to do – which lets you chalk off the beers you’ve tried and after making your way through them all (not in one day of course), get the right to have your name and photo on the ‘Hall of Foam’. We have literally no idea what that is, but it sounds excellent.
Decent beers without the condescension of craft beer that the likes of Brew Dog seem to enforce...
To our delight though, this was not the case. Not even remotely. The bar certainly has a Shoreditch, London vibe about it – the quirky nature of the games, the free darts and pool worked into a chic layout – but the wonderful news is that it has none of the snobbery about it. It all feels pretty casual.
Bar staff are friendly, welcoming and ready to recommend a beer to your taste. We even ended up having a rather interesting conversation with them about the awesome Australian hip-hop soundtrack that was sounding nicely round the venue.
You might not be able to order certain traditional (where it says traditional, read ‘shit’) lagers ala Carlsberg and Carling and other unfortunate specimens that start with ‘Car’, but this is just the glory of it. You get decent beers without the condescension of craft beer that the likes of Brew Dog seem to enforce.
You can even order draft beers in steins. Steins we tell you!! You know it’s good when we have to use a double exclamation mark.
The vibe of the place, then, is fine but friendly, pairing live sport on multiple screens with cosy booths and a sterling range.
The perfect choice for a comfortable beer or three, and even better for heading to for a date or before a night-out on the town. I think the JFC crew may have found a new regular...