Saturday, 2 April 2016

Beers in Bexleyheath

The Furze Wren - Thursday 31st March 2016

Broadway, Bexleyheath, Kent DA6 7DY

After last week's debacle I was hoping for a quieter evening and a nice curry. Alas, it was not to be. Although it was far less busy than last week it took around 15 minutes to get served - MB arrived five minutes before me, and after a further ten minute wait at the bar we finally got served. Now, if it was busy in there like last week then I would not have minded so much. Unfortunately, the competency of the barman who served us was atrocious. Several people who arrived at the bar after us were served before us. I reprimanded the barman when he finally got around to serving us, but I think it fell on deaf (and stupid) ears.

We decided to order the curry on our next round and again I encountered gross incompetency from another barman at the food ordering section of the bar; and to cap it all off the curry I wanted was not being served that evening.

We decided to follow up the Lazy Dog with a Crafty Fox after the play on the words in the IT ditty "The quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dog".We had one more pint thereafter (amazingly MB was served in a timely manner this time), which tasted very "soapy" straight after the stronger Crafty Fox, but after a few more sips the full flavour came through and very pleasant it was too. We decided to leave for pastures new after this pint.

Ordinarily, I like this pub, but the last two visits have really spoilt my view of it. I think I will see about visiting the Wrong Un at the other end of the Broadway for the next curry night and let the last two visits fade in my memory before going back again.

Beers drunk on this visit :
1) Lazy Dog (3.9%) - Elgood Brewery, Wisbech, Cambridgeshire - a pleasant session bitter
2) Crafty Fox (5.0%) - Hook Norton Brewery, Oxfordshire - a strong red beer
3) Red Ale (4.2%) - Sambrook's Brewery, London - an American style red ale

Number of visits : dozens

The Kings Arms

156 Broadway, Bexleyheath, Kent DA6 7DW

As we had enjoyed the Kings Arms last week as our alternative to the Furze Wren, we decided to head back there again this evening. We were greeted warmly by both of the bar staff, the music soothed my nerves and the Caledonia Edinburgh Castle was back on - what's not to like? We had a couple of pints of the Edinburgh Castle and then moved onto a beer I have not had in many a long year; Newcastle Brown Ale - and they served it along with half-pint glasses. I know it should be Geordie Schooners, but it wasn't with a pint glass.

I found out recently that the brewery are changing (have changed?) the recipe for Newcastle Brown Ale due to an issue with the American market - apparently it contains a colouring ingredient on the list of banned (carcinogenic) substances in the US which has been passed on at least two occasions by the European standards agencies. Who to believe? I don't know. Which is the bigger market (Europe or US) and which market should be listened to? Again, I do not know. Will it taste the same? Apparently they will be using malt to colour the beer going forward, so it may change the flavour. Hopefully it will taste the same and therefore still be drinkable on all continents again.

We had another great evening in the Kings Arms listening to the rock music and supping some very tasty beer. We also began to get recognised by a few of the regulars, so that is not a bad thing either. I think this may become more of a regular haunt in future.

Beers drunk on this visit :
1) Edinburgh Castle (4.1%) - Caledonian Brewing Co., Edinburgh, Scotland - malty, spicy full-bodied ale
2) Newcastle Brown Ale (4.7%) - Joh Smith's Brewery, Tadcaster, North Yorkshire - the classic red-brown strong ale
Number of visits : dozens

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