Reuben’s Brews Phones Home with London Calling English Pale Ale

Reuben’s Brews introduced a very special beer last night (July 16) at its brewery and tasting room in Ballard. If you’re a person who recognizes the name Ledley King, the event was even more special than the beer. Anyone who’s spoken with Adam Robbings, the Brewmaster and owner at Reuben’s Brews, is keenly aware of his British origins, but this was the first time the brewery produced a British-style beer. He named the beer London Calling British Pale Ale, though they would likely refer to it as a Bitter in the old country.

Adam brewed London Calling British Pale Ale to welcome Tottenham Hotspur to Seattle. As a boy growing up in England, Adam began cheering for Tottenham as soon as he was old enough to ask his dad which team was the best. Some months ago, the Seattle Sounders announced that Tottenham was coming to Seattle to play a friendly, which provided Adam with more than enough motivation to brew up a special batch of beer.

Tottenhan superstar Ledley King hoists a pint with the crowd.
Tottenhan superstar Ledley King hoists a pint with the crowd.

There are a few kegs out there, but the best place to get London Calling is at the Reuben’s Brews tasting room in Ballard. You should do that. It is a very good beer and a wonderful nod to the proud brewing tradition of Adam’s homeland.

A quick aside for those of you unfamiliar with English Premier League football (soccer). You should know that it is a big deal. A really, really big deal, actually. Teams like Tottenham Hotspur have supporters around the globe, as do other EPL teams. I know a few folks who support Chelsea, others who fancy Manchester United, and still more who favor Everton. Oddly, I don’t know anyone who likes Arsenal. Then again, maybe that’s not so odd. Supporters of these teams align themselves with local groups, like Seattle Spurs, the local group of Tottenham Hotspur supporters.

Last night, members of Seattle Spurs and Gorilla FC (a Sounders supporters club), along with other beer-loving soccer fans, attended a special event at Reuben’s Brews. The guest of honor was Ledley King, who is a legendary Tottenham player. Seriously, this fella was a special kind of footballer. The lively and starstruck crowd climbed all over itself and cheered as Ledley pounded the tap into the firkin. Countless photo opportunities followed. Washington Beer Blog correspondent North Seattle Sarah, who is an ardent Chelsea supporter, even took advantage of the chance to get her picture taken with a Premier League star.  Jerseys were autographed and young Tottenham fans, like little Reuben Robbings, after whom Reuben’s Brews was named, where hoisted into Ledley’s arms for pictures.

That's North Seattle Sarah with Ledley.
That’s North Seattle Sarah with Ledley.

The whole scene was akin to a bunch of Mariners fans getting to meet Edgar Martinez.

To brew the beer, Adam enlisted the help of representatives from Seattle Spurs, a club to which he belongs. Also, he reached out to Gorilla FC. Together they decided that proceeds from the beer should benefit Seattle Street Soccer, a local organization that uses soccer to empower homeless people.

Adam brewed London Calling English Pale Ale in the British tradition, using British Maris Otter malt and British crystal malt, along with Golding hops and a British fruity yeast strain. The beer weighs in at 4.7 percent ABV. Like pretty much everything coming out of the brewery at Reuben’s Brews, it is a delicious beer. A bit toasty, with some nice biscuit notes, mild sweetness, and a pleasantly restrained bitterness. The cask-conditioned version is absolutely brilliant.

If you enjoy real, British ale, or you need an introduction, you should to visit the brewery and try some London Calling.

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