Tuesday, 29 December 2015

The Bavarian Beerhouse

The Bavarian Beerhouse (Tower Hill) - Tuesday 22nd December 2015

9 Crutched Friars, London EC3N 2AU

On the approach to Christmas, SH and I decided to get a few more of our fellow rugby supporters out. As it was at short notice and tables were at a premium, we only managed to round up MB and RT in time for this particular visit. RT has not been well recently, so this was a nice opportunity to see him and catch up after a 2 year break. He was on top form and we all had a great evening with plenty of witty banter passing across the table.

We managed to down three beers during our allotted 5:30-9:30pm shift and also partook of some fine Bavarian fare; the other three had variations on a sausage theme but I went for the Bavarian meatloaf topped with a fried egg, all on a bed of sauteed potatoes - yum!

This bar seems to be a lot quieter than the one in Old Street, but was still quite busy none-the-less. I think we will all be up for a return visit in the New Year to watch a bit of Bundesliga (although football is not really my thing) and a few more beers. My eldest son has been to this bar with me previously on a Bayern Munich match day and is also up for a return visit, so I may go for a daytime visit again so he can come along too.

Beers drunk on this visit :

1) Krombacher Dunkel (4.3%) - a rich, malty, complex dark beer
2) Erdinger Hefe Dunkel Weissbier (5.3%) - a full-bodied, rich, smooth dark beer
3) Erdinger Hefe Weissbier (5.3%) - a premium wheat beer
Number of visits : 1st / 1 previous at this actual bar

The Ship & Shovell

As it was RT's first meet-up with us in a while and he is not too familiar with the area I said that I would meet up with him before we went to the Bavarian Beerhouse. I thought that I would like that return visit to the Ship & Shovell promised to myself a couple of weeks back.

1-3 Craven Passage, London WC2N 5PH

We only had the one beer here before we moved on, but it was a lovely pint in a very busy setting. We had to prop up the bar between the central and right hand pillars of the bar, but managed to grab a seat to finish our pints after only a few minutes.

After we had finished at the Bavarian Beerhouse we all went our separate ways, but as MB lives only one stop down the train line from me, and it was still early, we decided to grab a couple more pints back here at the Ship.  MB had not been in here before, so it was a nice surprise for him. A couple of pints here went down very well after all the German fare.

Beers drunk on this visit :

1) Ruby Rustler (4.1%) - Badger Brewery (Hall & Woodhouse), Dorset - a rich, fruity session beer
2) First Call (4.0%) - Badger Brewery - a fresh, citrus and spicy ale

Number of visits : 2nd

Saturday, 26 December 2015

The Penny Farthing

The Penny Farthing - Saturday 19th December 2015

3 Waterside, Dartford DA1 4JJ

The Christmas season is upon us, so I will hopefully be popping out a few more times over the next couple of weeks. First up is another micropub in my immediate vicinity - The Penny Farthing. I have only visited this once before and enjoyed it in there very much. So, when my running mates asked where we should go for a beer I suggested the Penny Farthing as NW has been there before and CM likes micropubs. As it was ourturn to head down NW's way it turned out to be a good choice with everyone.

I arrived nice and early to grab a table but the pub was full when I got there. I ordered a pint and stepped outside to sit at one of the tables overlooking the green and the river Cray. A couple of small parties of lads turned up and I had a chat with them about beer and pubs until NW arrived. As luck would have it, as soon as he ordered a beer a table of revellers finished up their pints and left. We quickly grabbed their table and saw the night out over a few beers when the rest arrived.

Whilst supping our ales and having a great catch-up we were visited by an itinerant tradesman who sold me a bag of licorice allsorts which I shared. The next round saw us sharing some bags of nuts and crisps and as the evening panned out, the landlady gave us some salted nibbles with our drinks.

This pub is great for atmosphere, choice of beers on offer and great customer service.

Beers drunk on this visit :

1) Shuffled Deck (3.8%) - Black Jack Micro-brewery, Manchester - a hoppy golden ale
2) Sergeant Pepper (4.2%) - Mighty Oak,
3) Seasider (4.3%) - Gadds' Ramsgate Brewery, Broadstairs, Kent - an amber ale
4) Glacier Ice (4.9%) - Cottage Brewing, Lovington, Somerset - a strong IPA

I could not find a graphic for the Glacier Ice - even on the brewery site.

Visits: 1st / 1 previous

The Crayford Arms

37 Crayford High St, Dartford DA1 4HH

We left the Penny Farthing at closing time but still wanted another beer. We wandered up the hill to the Crayford Arms, a pub I have not been in for maybe 25 years. There is a small choice of real ale in here, but enough to have an evening's session on a return visit. We grabbed a final pint in here (the Spitfire was off, so I had to settle for a not bad pint of Master Brew)and then wended our merry ways.

Beers drunk on this visit :

1) Master Brew (3.7%) - Shepherd Neame, Faversham, Kent - A bitter, hoppy amber ale

Visits : 1st / a few previous

Monday, 14 December 2015

The White Horse

The White Horse - Thursday 10th December 2015

20-22 Peckham Rye, London SE15 4JR

It was raining, it was pouring and this old man really should have been snoring, but a meet up with RM one of my RPG buddies was something I had been looking forward to for quite a few weeks.

Ordinarily we just met up every Wednesday at the gaming club, but as games of interest have been a bit on the rare side recently we decided to go out and just grab a beer and have a natter. We had a great chat about gaming and a great variety of matters life and family.

Unfortunately one of the beers (Dark Star - a long time favoured beer) was off (the barrel was empty just as I ordered my first pint of it), so I was limited to just two ales to choose from. RM is a cider drinker and he was catered for with a couple of choices, but he stuck with Aspalls on tap.

The pub is much bigger than one would gather from the external view. It consists of a main public bar and a huge dining area out back. We sat in the public bar, which had a pool table partitioned off to one side. It was quite lively in there considering it was mid-week ish - evey table and stool at the bar was full and there were several gentlemen stood at the bar propping it up with ales in hand. The bar staff were very friendly and helpful, bringing one of my pints over to the table for me after ot was ordered.

Peckham Rye is not a place I have ever really visited before. I have passed through on the train on the way to work for several years, but I am glad RM decided on this little (big?) gem of a pub.

Beers drunk on this visit :

1) Best Bitter (3.5%) - Ringwood Brewery, Ringwood, Hampshire - a tangy, hoppy session bitter
2) Wandle (3.8%) - Sambrook Brewery, Battersea, London - a great session amber ale

Visits: 1st

The Ship and Shovell

The Ship and Shovell - Wednesday 2nd December 2015

1-3 Craven Passage, London WC2N 5PH

GW put out a call-to-arms a week or so ago for some trusty souls to embark upon a drinking session at a pub close to where we all work. The call was answered by myself and GL and GF - all of whom worked at my previous place of work - it was a bit of a work reunion. GW had decided on a pub he had only visited the once previously and fell in love with as it is the only pub we are aware of that has a bar on two sides of the same street and the only one in London that sells Badger beers (Hall & Woodhouse brewery). I cannot believe that in all the years I have worked in London, the amount of times (thousands) I have passed through Charing Cross station and walked down Villiers Street, and been to the shops, bars and clubs in the arcade, I never made it to the end of the arcade and up the steps to this little gem of a pub(s).

It was a busy night in the two bars but we were lucky to have a table due to GW and GF getting there nice and early. As we had already eaten, we missed out on the fine looking fare on offer, so concentrated instead on a few pints of great ale. Seeing as it was a Badger house, we quickly settled into a steady pace on one of my all time favourite beers - Tanglefoot.

This is definitely a pub I will visit again - and soon!

Beers drunk on this visit :

1) First Call (4.0%) - Badger Brewery, Hall & Woodhouse, Dorset - clean, fresh, single hop
2) Tanglefoot (4.9%) - Badger Brewery, Hall & Woodhouse, Dorset - a floral, fruity golden ale

Visits : 1st

After a goodly few pints at The Ship & Shovell we decided to move on and save a few Badger ales for another visit. We moved up the road a little to The Coal Hole.

The Coal Hole
91-92 Strand, London WC2R 0DW
This pub has become one of my regular haunts now - it always offers several different ales and a lively atmosphere. This evening was no different and we had to prop up a bar close to the rear of the pub by the fruit machines. We all decided to stick to the same beer after the first pint - Three Wise Hops. I gave everyone a quick taste of this very fine ruby red ale and they were all hooked. This beer is brewed under licence from the Nicholson's pub chain to the Truman's brewery.

Several pints of this later and we had to wend our merry ways home. All of us via the kebab shop nearest to our own homes - great minds thing alike.

Beers drunk on this visit :

1) Three Wise Hops (4.3%) - Truman's Brewery, Hackney Wick - a spicy, citrusy ruby red ale

Vists : Several