It’s not every venue that can claim to have a history as colourful as The Brewery’s. Our City of London home once housed the prestigious Whitbread brewery, an immense enterprise that produced a dark style of beer known as porter for over 200 years.
Established in 1750 by Samuel Whitbread in what was the derelict King’s Head brewery, our Chiswell Street building was the largest brewery in the world by the 1780s and the setting for the production of over 202,000 barrels of porter in 1796.
Such achievements attracted royal acclaim and in 1787 Whitbread’s brewery was visited by King George III, Queen Charlotte, their three daughters as well as several dukes and duchesses, lords and ladies. Whitbread understandably pulled out all the stops to impress his eminent guests and in doing so, created a legacy of entertaining that we continue to aspire to today. In fact, we’ve named two of our stunning event spaces after these regal guests – the King George III room and the Queen Charlotte room.
Here we look back at this and other notable soirees The Brewery has hosted over the years, as well as what our historic venue can offer for your next event.
The royal seal of approval
According to a newspaper report of King George III’s visit to Whitbread’s brewery from the time, the royal couple were given a guided tour of the building and its machinery from Samuel Whitbread himself.
As the report states, the King, Queen and their entourage were then treated to a sumptuous banquet at The Brewery.
“Their Majesties were led to a cold collation, as magnificent as affluence and arrangement could make it. The whole service was plate. There was every wine in the world. […] As there was no want of anything else, there was no want of appetite.” (Whitbread’s Brewery, University of Glasgow).
Whitbread’s brewery continued to wine and dine the great and the good throughout its history. As the MP Thomas Creevey said in 1823, “I really had a most agreeable dinner at Sam Whitbread’s brewery on Saturday. We sat down 22, I think.” (Whitbread’s Brewery, University of Glasgow).
Since those days of royal visits, The Brewery is still welcoming high profile guests to an array of exciting events. Famous faces spotted in our cobbled courtyard in recent years include Kanye West and Kim Kardashian, Tom Hardy and Adele.
In 2013, we hosted the annual AIM awards (Association of Independent Music) with live music from Twin Atlantic and Daughter. More recently our versatile venue hosted the ICE gaming after party for Playtech Software Ltd in collaboration with events company Made Up. In contrast to the royal banquets of our 18th century history, this glittering event boasted custom lighting and laser production, set and video design and amazing aerial performances.
Cutting edge events in a historic setting
So what can The Brewery provide in the way of entertainment at your next event? Whether you want to recreate the opulence of a royal banquet, dazzle your party guests with special effects, create your dream wedding or deliver your best business conference yet, we can help make it happen.
With such a rich variety of event spaces available, each steeped in history and with their own unique charm, The Brewery is ideal for anything from a small meeting or gathering to the celebration of the year.
Our award-winning event design team excel at turning your vision into reality, complete with bespoke menus created by our talented chefs, sparkling audio-visual options, lightning-fast connectivity, imaginative set design and the best live entertainment contacts in the business.
Take a look at our services to discover more about how The Brewery can make your next event unforgettable or contact us today.