This brewery, established in 2008, has two locations and the one I visited at 82 West Fuxing road is easily accessible from the Shanghai Library and Changsu Road metro stations. The ground floor does have two large screen televisions, showing American sports programmes, but I was able to sit in a corner with soft lighting, and near a real wood fire, which was rather cosy. Prices were similar to the Brew and it was also possible to order a platter of six beers to sample, five of which I would be more than happy to drink on a regular basis.
The Standing 8 Pilsner at 4.9% had a crisp taste, a good level of carbonation and a lingering rather sweet aftertaste. The Contender Extra Pale Ale, also 4.9%, had a hoppy nose and citrusy flavours; a beer similar in taste to the excellent Windsor Knot from the Windsor & Eton brewery, and I suspect that it is brewed with Nelson Sauvin hops.
The Roshambo Session IPA, weighing in at 5.3%, is a dry, hoppy beer which might not be regarded as a session beer strength wise by most British drinkers but certainly, pun intended, packed a punch. The 5.8% Ginger Baker Beatdown is an excellent beer; the ginger taste is not too pronounced and there is a very pleasant and warming after-taste.
I thought that the Black EyePa, a hefty 6.7%, was a little disappointing with a sharp aftertaste and too much alcohol on the nose. By comparison, the even stronger Winter Warmer, at 7.1%, was rich and spicy possibly cloves with a warm aftertaste and, to my taste, better balanced than the Black EyePa.
Neither of the upcoming beers shown on the board, Imperial Brown Ale and Imperial Stout, were tapped during the time I spent warming myself by the fire which, given the need to navigate myself back to Changsu Road station, may have been a blessing in disguise!
All in all, an excellent brew pub with a range of interesting beers and friendly English speaking staff which, on the evening I visited, had a number of local visitors as well as plenty of expats and tourists.
John Bush - February 2014