Date: 19 August 2009 - Nice Ride, Shame about the Beer


Sampled by:

PV, FN, ROC, KOC, RN & TM

One of the warmest days this year and the majority had a very nice cycle along the Basingstoke Canal to Crookham. PV and FN went all the way to The Chequers Bridge but KOC, RN and TM exited early at the Village. ROC, of course, enjoyed the decent down the hill from Warren Corner.
The ride back, to complete a round trip of some 14 miles, was along the dark and eerie Bourley Road.

PubLocationOS Map RefGeorge and Lobster Crookham Village GU51 5SU CommentWhen we arrived, there was one car in the park, a couple of people in the bar, a solitary Vier drinker outside and absolutely no one in the restaurant. You could call it a quiet night at the former Chequers pub and given the quality, or rather lack of quality of the beer, they should not be surprised at the absence of any real ale drinkers. But where have all the diners gone?
Brewerbeer%PriceMarkComment
Andwells King John 3.8 £2.70 1.5 No choice

PubLocationOS Map Ref
Black Horse Crookham Village GU51 5SJ
Comment
The pub was reasonably busy with a poker school in one corner and the football lads having a post training drink in another. The barmaid was reasonable as well.
Brewerbeer%PriceMarkComment
Courage Best 4.0 £2.70 3 Not the Best ever
Hogs Back TEA 4.2 £2.80 2.5 Not the best TEA ever
Greene King Abbot 5.0 £2.90 3 After the last one, anything is 3

PubLocationOS Map Ref
Fox and Hounds Church Crookham GU51 5NP
Comment
The friendly barman happily changed the Old Speckled Hen. The belted barmaid was just happy. Although the pub had looked busy when we cycled past on the canal, the barman reported it had in fact been a rather quiet night. Few diners then; just those out for an evening stroll stopping off for a quick drink.
Brewerbeer%PriceMarkComment
Courage Best 4.0 £2.80 2.5 -
Fullerís London Pride 4.1 £2.95 2.5 -
Morland Old Speckled Hen 4.5 £2.95 0 -

PubLocationOS Map Ref
Wyvern Church Crookham GU52 8JY
Comment
With the Black Sheep off, the barmaid of un-determinant origin served up a beer of average quality to PV and ROC while the rest did not even bother to come in. PV did manage to get a nice box, even though it is not big enough for a glass.
Brewerbeer%PriceMarkComment
Fullerís London Pride 4.1 £2.95 2 -

PubLocationOS Map Ref
Tweseldown Church Crookham GU 52 8DY
Comment
It is always pleasing to find a pub that still retains two distinct bars, and we settled in the empty public. There were only two beers on when we arrived but our expressed disappointment at missing out on the Adnams Bitter resulted in the landlord bringing on a new barrel of the stuff. The landlord (formally at The Fox and Hounds at Herriard) also mentioned that trade had been dire over the last couple of weeks. It had been the worse August since they took over the pub four years ago. Discussing the beer range, he explained he could obtain any of the beers on the Punch Taverns SIBA list but stayed with the three Ďmain streamí beers as these went down well with his regulars. He could not be persuaded it might be worth trying a more Ďlocalí beer even if this meant the pub would not be considered for the CAMRA Locale promotion. All the beers tried were in good condition and were by far the best tried on this ride around the pubs of Crookham.
Brewerbeer%PriceMarkComment
Courage Best 4.0 £3.05 3.5 -
Fullerís London Pride 4.1 £3.05 3.5 -
Adnams Bitter 3.7 £3.05 3.5 Worth waiting for

Although the Tweseldown does not shut until 11.30 pm on weekdays, only PV and FN took advantage and stayed for another pint. The rest hurried off to catch the even latter closing at the Garden Gate.
Postscript Mind you backs!