Beer Hawk to open bottle shop in London

The UK’s largest online beer retailer is opening a bottle shop in London to capitalise on the city’s growing love of craft beer.

Beer Hawk’s first bricks and mortar site will be on Stamford Street, near London’s South Bank, close to the Houses of Parliament, and it will open its doors in May.

It will follow the hybrid format that has worked so well for the likes of We Brought Beer and The Bottle Shop in London.

Beer Hawk is based in Yorkshire, but co-founder Chris France said he could not look past London for its first bricks and mortar retailer.

“Leeds, Manchester, and Liverpool all have amazing craft beer scenes, but the number of customers we have in London and the sheer size of the scene means it’s the UK’s most sensible city to launch our first bar,” he said. “We’ve picked somewhere near Central London so that we can use this as a place to treat our existing London

Stella Artois and Budweiser brewer AB InBev owns Beer Hawk, so the world's largest alcoholic drinks producer will now own its first physical UK retail site, a sign of a continuing blurring of the lines in a consolidating market.

In a recent interview with DRN, Beer Hawk’s founders discussed moving to 12,000sq ft premises in Wetherby, West Yorkshire, so it can increase its storage capacity tenfold, and it now has a thriving wholesale arm with a dedicated trade site.

Beer Hawk is part of Ab InBev’s ZX Ventures division, which has recently opened the Goose Island Vintage Ale House in London, and built a shiny new site for Camden Town Brewery in Enfield.

But in an interview with Good Beer Hunting the retailer said it is not bothered by the idea of its association with the multinational brewer – which is responsible for Corona and Becks, among others – affecting its craft credentials.  

“For some people in the beer community, the ownership structure of the brewery or retailer is the defining factor, but for us it’s more about the actual beer itself,” it said. “All we’ve ever wanted to do is to help as many people as possible drink the best beer for them, and we’re 100% committed to making that happen regardless of where that beer comes from.”

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