“It’s 5 o’clock somewhere,” is a mantra that’s always helped the nation leave work a little earlier on a Friday to head to their local watering hole for a much-needed pint. It’s an excuse that doesn’t always fly with your boss but when it does, your minor victory against ‘the man’ makes that nectar taste all the sweeter.
Cornwall, the southern-most county in England, is a land where that chilled-out attitude is 24/7. If the surf’s up, you’re late for work. If the farmer’s cows are in the road, you’re working from home. If a Cornishman tells you he’ll “be with you dreckly, me ‘ansum”, he means he’ll be with you when he’s damn well ready, you good-looking gent.
This mellow attitude is the reason why so many amazing craft beers are coming out of the south west. No rushing, no stressing: it’s the formula for a bloody great pint. Don’t believe us? Get your lips around one of these five bottles…
01 Black Flag Brewery
As raw as the ’70s punk band with the same name, this is an unpasteurized, mouth-watering taste bomb that packs a punch. blackflagbrewery.com
02 Padstow Brewing Co
We visited this family-run brewery and left with three boxes of beer. Their 6.8% Sundowners pale ale is a beer we could happily live off. padstowbrewing.co.uk
03 Firebrand Brewing Co
Just a year old, Firebrand has already nudged its way into the best drinking holes in London with its near-perfect US-inspired Graffiti IPA. firebrandbrewing.co.uk
04 Rebel Brewing Co
This brewery can boast a CAMRA Champion Beer of Cornwall award-winner in its offerings. Quaff this IPA with a slab of Cornish cheese. rebelbrewing.co.uk
05 Harbour Brewing
We gave a silver award to this one (made by two surfing pals) in our Craft Beer Awards, reinforcing it as one of our all-time best finds. harbourbrewing.com