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  • Haydn Williams

The Tour de Hops

March 2020, Covid 19 has taken its toll on the UK and we go into semi-lockdown.


The pubs close.


The world changes.


The world of beer changes.


Breweries are forced to reconsider how their business operate and online shops and collection pods start popping up – some more effective than others.


With trade dropping off the face of the planet. Craft breweries take the situation by the scruff of the neck. They become beacons of hope for local (and national) communities in the know and begin to invent creative new ways of getting good beer into the hands of the people.


We’ve seen everything from digital pub quizzes, to "anything’s a growler" to peddle powered delivery vehicles – I’m looking at you Left Handed Giant and Bianca Road.


While all of these initiatives make me smile, it’s the beers by bike that caught my attention.


This weekend, I cycled 100km for the first time in years. It felt pretty freeing to get away from being locked down in Wimbledon and into the other London boroughs and even beyond the M25.


I started thinking.


If breweries could get peddling and deliver beer to me when I need it most. Why couldn’t I hop on my bike and visit breweries that are normally a little out of reach?


I pondered, how many breweries are within a 100km of Wimbledon?


Well…


There are more than 100 in London.


And Siren and Elusive Brewing are just outside Wokingham which is only 40 miles (65ish KM) away.


Plus, over in Windsor, you have Windsor and Eton Brewery and in Esher you have Big Smoke.


The answer? Well I’m not really sure. (Basically I gave up, there’s too many to count).


So…


To celebrate great beer and great cycling, I’m committing to my very own Tour De Hops.


I’ll ride to a different brewery every week. Initially during Covid this will be for a takeaway growler in a nearby green space… But eventually I’ll be able to enjoy taprooms again.


You can expect a few shots of the ride, reviews of the best beers, and some insight into how each brewery have been doing and what their future plans are.


You can follow my journey on Instagram, Twitter and by subscribing to my blog here.


If you’re interested in joining me one weekend, pop me an email at Haydn@TourdeHops.co.uk or contact me via social media.


Happy cycling. Hoppy drinking.

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