They say…

Des de Moor
Best beer and travel writing award 2015, 2011 -- British Guild of Beer Writers Awards
Accredited Beer Sommelier
Writer of "Probably the best book about beer in London" - Londonist
"A necessity if you're a beer geek travelling to London town" - Beer Advocate
"A joy to read" - Roger Protz
"Very authoritative" - Tim Webb.
"One of the top beer writers in the UK" - Mark Dredge.
"A beer guru" - Popbitch.
Des de Moor

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Beer tours

couragetowerbridge

beer-sign-w600 Enjoy a guided pub tour or beer tasting in the company of an expert.

As an accomplished and experienced walk and tour leader, public speaker and Accredited Beer Sommelier, I can offer:

For beer tours, my speciality is , but I can also devise and lead tours in some other cities. For tutored tastings and other events, I’m happy to travel to a venue that suits you.

London brewery heritage walk: Porters, peers and pilgrims

barclayperkinsplaqueA fascinating regular walking tour of London’s brewery heritage and numerous other historic sites. View the surviving Victorian splendour of Whitbread and the original Truman’s, discover where porter was first perfected, cross iconic Tower Bridge with views of Courage’s Anchor Brewhouse, see where brewers got rich beyond the dreams of avarice on the former site of Shakespeare’s Globe, and end with a pint at the Borough’s last coaching inn, near London Bridge and numerous other beer venues. Celebrate London’s beer renaissance by reminded yourself of its illustrious brewing past.

A leisurely walk of approximately five miles (8 km) taking about three hours through easy territory with plenty of stops along the way, with a medium-sized group of up to 30 people. This is a public walk open to individuals, couples or groups: just book the required number of tickets. Older children are welcome so long as they’re able to walk the distance though do be aware that the content is largely about and beer. Note this walk visits heritage sites, not working breweries, and no drinks are included.

Forthcoming dates:

  • Sunday 15 October 2017 1030hrs
  • Thursday 28 December 2017 1030hrs: walk off some of the seasonal excess and get a breath of fresh air while discovering brewery heritage.

Ticket: £10 per person + booking fee. Book online at Design My Night.

Meet at Old Street Underground/National Rail station (downstairs by ticket hall), London EC1Y 1BE.

Private heritage pub tours and tastings

Olde Cheshire Cheese, London EC4

Olde Cheshire Cheese, London EC4

When you’re tired of London pubs, as Dr Johnson might have said, you’re tired of life. And what better way to discover them than in the friendly company of one of the capital’s leading beer and pub experts?

My standard Fleet Valley Tour explores the exceptional pubs and hidden corners of the historic part of London between Holborn Viaduct and Blackfriars Bridge, on the banks of the long-covered river Fleet, including Legal London, Fleet Street and the western edge of the City. There are short walks in between each pub.

It includes:

  • Pauses in four great pubs serving excellent beer including traditional English cask and more contemporary styles. Most of the pubs are recognised Heritage Pubs with exceptional interiors.
  • Half a pint of beer per person included in each pub, with beer recommendations and a tutored tasting if required.
  • Glances at more historic pubs along the way, as well as numerous other picturesque and interesting sites with historic, literary and architectural interest. You’ll even get to hear the river Fleet — something even most born and bred Londoners haven’t done.
  • Informal expert commentary on London pubs, beer and history.

The walk takes three hours, starting from Chancery Lane Tube station and finishing at another Tube station in the area.

This tour runs weekday afternoons only starting at 1400hrs. Later starts are really only practical early in the week as pubs can get very busy: please enquire.

Cost: from £230 including taxes and drinks for a group of up to six people.

This is an ideal activity for a small group of over-18s only and the size of the group is limited by the small size of some of the pubs visited. We can manage a single group of up to eight people at additional cost. We may also be able to manage larger numbers by splitting into more than one group with an additional guide: please enquire.

Online booking will follow shortly but in the meantime please contact me at des@desdemoor.com.

Customised tours in other parts of London are possible and on different times and days including at weekends. For example I have itineraries for the Bermondsey brewers on Saturdays; a beautiful walk taking in pubs and breweries around Brixton and Brockwell Park; a beer tour of the South Bank; and a tour of Hackney Wick and the Olympic Park. Or I can devise an itinerary with a location and theme to suit your requirements.

I also regularly lead brewery tours for London Brewery Tours and others.

More beer and brewery tours in London:

Tutored beer tastings

Pic: Matt Chinnery, thehalfpintgentleman.com

Pic: Matt Chinnery, thehalfpintgentleman.com

A tutored beer tasting in the company of an expert is a great way of enhancing your appreciation of beer, discovering more about the astonishing range of beer styles, flavours and aromas. how brewers conjure such diversity from simple ingredients and how to match beer with food. An ideal activity for pubs and bars, restaurants, beer and food festivals, clubs and societies and private and corporate events.

I’ve devised and hosted tutored tastings at a wide range of events and venues including the Great British Beer Festival, the BBC Good Food Show, Taste of London, Borough Market, Ludlow Food Festival, Foodies Festival, Bierfestival Groningen and many more.

Forthcoming public tastings and other events
Booking essential: please follow the links below.

Tastings at your venue or event

Des de Moor, London, May 2015. Pic: Luke Doyle.

Des de Moor, London, May 2015. Pic: Luke Doyle.

I can devise a themed tasting to suit your needs. I recommend focusing on no more than six beers. Some suggestions are:

  • Beer and cheese. A simple and popular introduction to beer and food matching: forget cheese and wine parties, as cheese is the perfect partner to beer, and easily served.
  • Belgian beer. You’ll be astonished at the dazzling variety of beers from the country that still leads the brewing world, from sour lambics and brown ales to big  monastic barley wines.
  • London beers. Discover some of the very best beers from the UK’s most dynamic beer scene, and learn about the capital’s illustrious brewing past as well as its present.
  • Classic styles. What’s the difference between an ale and a lager? And between a porter and a stout? And why do they all taste so good? Find out in my tour of essential beer styles.

My services include:

  • Selecting beers and food matches if applicable.
  • Sourcing beer and food if required. Alternatively, you can do this yourself, or, at a bar or festival, choose from the beers already available.
  • Advising on logistics and service.
  • Hosting the tasting itself. For six beers, allow 90 minutes to two hours, though tastings can be adapted to suit the available time slot.

You will need to find a venue and provide assistance with beer service. I can sometimes recommend suitable venues if required.

Cost: Subject to agreement but typically £230 per tasting, excluding travel and subsistence expenses outside London, cost of beer and food, venue etc. Discounts negotiable for charities and not-for-profits, including CAMRA branches.

Professional services

Judging at the Brussels Beer Challenge. Pic: Paul Peng Wang,

Judging at the Brussels Beer Challenge. Pic: Paul Peng Wang,

I can provide various additional services including:

  • Talks, presentations and readings
  • Beer appreciation training
  • Beer and food matching
  • Beer lists and menus
  • Beer judging
  • Copy writing and tasting notes
  • Advice and consultancy

My extensive experience as a beer judge includes:

  • World Beer Cup,  Brewers Association, USA, judge 2014 and 2016.
  • Great American Beer Festival, Brewers Association, Denver CO, judge 2013, 2015, 2016, 2017.
  • Brussels Beer Challenge Judge 2016.
  • International Beer Challenge, London, judge annually 2008-10, table captain annually 2011-17.
  • World Beer Awards, European and international rounds judge 2012, 2013, 2014, 2016.
  • The Beer Awards judge captain 2016, 2017.
  • Killarney Beer Festival Best Beer in Ireland, judge 2015, 2016, 2017.
  • Atlanta Cask Ale Tasting, guest judge 2017.
  • Champion Beer of Britain, competition organised by CAMRA at Great British Beer Festival, London, bottle conditioned beer judge 2012, final round judge 2013 and 2014, Southern England heats judge 2016.
  • Champion Beer of London, judge at final of inaugural competition 2017.
  • Birra dell’Anno, national Italian competition organised by Unionbirrai at RHEX, Rimini, judge 2012.
  • Het Beste Bokbier van Nederland, competition organised by PINT at Bokbierfestival, Amsterdam, judge 2013.
  • Fuller’s Cellarman of the Year, guest judge 2012, 2016.
  • UK National Homebrew Competition, Bristol, industry judge 2011, 2012 (run to BJCP rules, though I’m not an accredited BJCP judge).
  • Sainsbury’s Great British Beer Hunt, judge in predecessor Beer Competition 2009, guest judge in regional heats 2011.
  • Tesco Drinks Awards, judge 2007, 2008