no. 178

A couple of weeks back I was wandering around the barrel room at Beavertown Brewery here in North London. I’d just interviewed owner and founder Logan Plant for a forthcoming Critical Drinking piece, and he was giving me a tour of what he’s dubbed the Tempus Project—Beavertown’s barrel aging and mixed fermentation program, which takes its name from the Latin word for "time."

What impressed me most, however, wasn’t the rounded and artful beers Plant let me taste, or the stack of more than 150 barrels ranging from sherry to bourbon that filled the room. Rather, it was a newly constructed room that contained a lab. 

Here, Beavertown’s sole lab technician Cian O’Connor was working to ensure that the brewery’s beers were hitting its increasingly stringent quality standards. A lot of breweries tell me that they’re always working to improve quality, but the existence of this lab was evidence of these words turning into actions.

Matthew Curtis