Stop all the clocks, cut off the telephone, etc. London Pride has gone hipster.
Since its launch in 1959, the Fuller's flagship beer has been brewed to the same recipe, using pale malt and Target, Challenger and Northdown hops. It's a recipe well-known to the palettes of City boys on a bender, American tourists fresh off the 747, and your dad. And, as London's beer scene has evolved, it's a brand that's been increasingly sneered at by those who think it's a bit fuddy duddy.
Maybe you can't blame them, given, for example, this recent ad campaign starring weatherman Michael Fish:
Fuller's, though, was listening. And, after tinkering away in their Chiswick brewery, have come up with London Pride... Unfiltered. It's the same beer (and the same 4.1% abv), but dry hopped with Target hops, and kegged and chilled, for those who like added hoppiness/effervescence to their brew. It's also unfiltered and unpasteurised — a trend we've seen a lot lately, from the likes of Camden Hells and imported tank Pilsner Urquell. That makes it a bit hazy, which is also currently cool.
To be fair to the Fuller's, they're being totally open about their plan: "London Pride Unfiltered is unashamedly designed to appeal to today’s younger consumer," they say. Still, we'd love to have been a fly on the wall for the meeting between the marketing team and those brewers, who've consistently asserted that London Pride cannot be improved.
Maybe London Pride Unfiltered will be the beer to bring parents and their kids back together in the pub again. Or maybe it'll be the new New Coke. Let's all go to the boozer and make up our minds.