Date: 22 July 2009 - A Gem of an Idea

Sampled by:


When discussing this week’s cycle ride with Jem and Satan at The Crossways beer festival they suggested that if we were in Bentley we might as well go the extra yard and call at The Anchor at Lower Froyle. So we did.
The main body let the train take the strain as far as Bentley station whilst ROC cycled. He must, however, remember the turn off the ridgeway for Lower Froyle is at the well at Well, as all other roads will lead to Bentley.

PubLocationOS Map RefAnchor Lower Froyle GU34 4NA CommentIn the recent, rather well done, refurbishment they could have lost sight that the establishment was still a pub and turned the whole place gastro. However, whilst there is no doubt the main emphasis is on food they have maintained a separate bar to accommodate those of us who only want a drink. Indeed the barman was at pains to point out that while you can be served food in this bar, none of the tables are bookable. Not that it mattered as we stayed outside the front of the pub.
Andwells Gold Muddler 3.9 £2.60 4 Sharp and refreshing
Triple fff Stairway 4.0 £2.80 4 Smooth as a baby’s behind
Bowman Wallops Wood 4.5 £2.80 4.5 Truly exceptional

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Star Bentley GU10 5LW
This village pub boasts The Star of India restaurant. Perhaps it was the ambiance of the Orient they were trying to recreate but really it was just too dark to drink safely, let alone write any notes. All the beers tried were a trifle on the cold side, apart from the Moondance, which had its own problems – it could only be described as warm and soapy.
Timothy Taylor Landlord 4.2 £2.95 3 -
Triple fff Moondance 4.2 £2.95 2 Something funny about it
Fuller’s London Pride 4.1 £2.95 3 -

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Bull Bentley GU10 5JH
With its comfortable atmosphere and good selection of well-kept standard bitters, this is always a popular call for Mengo, albeit only once a year! The pub was quiet by the time we got there but the landlord reported it had been busy earlier. It was suggested to him that however nice the beers stocked were, as both the Youngs and Ringwood bitters were much the same strength, it might be an idea to replace one of them with guest beers available to him from Enterprise’s SIBA list. Perhaps not the suggestion to make to a landlord who had been in the pub nine years and obviously knew what his customers wanted. Still nothing ventured……………….
Courage Best 4.0 £2.80 3.5 -
Youngs Bitter 3.7 £2.80 4 Very enjoyable
Timothy Taylor Landlord 4.3 £3.00 3.5 -
Ringwood Best 3.8 £2.80 3.5 Smooth and tasty

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Wheatsheaf Farnham GU9 7DR
As usual, Wednesday evening was Quiz Night and this had drawn in quite a few punters. Somewhat noisy after the quiet contemplation of the previous pubs visited today. At least the sound on the TV had been turned down. Reasonable beer range reasonably kept but they had committed the cardinal sin of charging extra for drinking in half pint measures. All beers were £3.10 a pint but £1.60 a half. Do we not like that?
Triple fff Alton’s Pride 3.8 £3.10 3 -
Timothy Taylor Landlord 4.3 £3.10 3 -
Hogs Back TEA 4.2 £3.10 3 -