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Username: willyfog

Age: 40

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Latest comments by willyfog

The Black Horse, Reading

Have to agree whole-heartedly with previous reviews. Have been coming to The Black Horse for years and it is one of the most characterful pubs i've ever been in. These types of pub are sadly a dying breed (I thoroughly agree with one previous reviewer's comments about The Bell at Aldworth being of a similar type) with antiquated methods and fittings, but in a world of chain pubs, continental lagers and juke boxes it is a blessed relief to go back in time now and again.

Most of the ales have to be fetched from the cellar upon being ordered, the gents' toilet is outdoors with no roof and the urinal is really just a wall with a trough, the indoor seating areas are more akin to a living room than a pub and the pub itself is not the easiest to find for the uninitiated (particularly coming from the Wallingford side) being as it is down some country lanes that don't immediately promise much in the way of life. All these features add to up to the make The Black Horse a true hidden gem and one that should be treasured and preserved for as long as possible

16 Aug 2009 10:38

The Bell Inn, Aldworth

This country needs more pubs like this. It is at the true heart of the community being as it is in the centre of the village geographically and also seems to be the focal point of village social life. It ticks lots of stereotypical boxes of what you might ideally want from an English village pub with a great selection of real ales and cider, cheap bar food, plenty of local customers (young and old), dogs sitting on the floor, an open fire and a cricket pitch next door.

I don't want to say anything negative but if you were being pinickity you could point towards the fact that it's incredibly cramped inside, the gents toilet is outside and lacks any mod-cons (I think a light is the most advanced thing there is) and the food i've had hasn't been that great, but most of these things just add to the rustic charm of the place.

I highly recommend a visit, particularly in the evening when the atmosphere really comes alive

16 Aug 2009 10:23

Old Orleans, Reading

Ate last night with a work party and was disappointed with food. Ribs were slimy and greasy, chicken wings even worse and coleslaw was that insipid cheap supermarket type. Felt ripped off.

Service was friendly but they did forget 1 drinks order and had to be prompted to take our initial food order after a long wait. Decor feels like a hang-over from chain restaurants/bars of the 90's with lots of random tat covering the ceiling and walls. Could do with a spruce-up to bring it into the 21st century. Also was v noisy due to a large number of birthday parties in progress - this admittedly was late in evening but it may have been rather off-putting if you were dining in a smaller group.

Overall, pretty dire and there is better similar fare to be had within spitting distance

17 Jan 2009 09:56

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willyfog has been registered on this site since 17th February 2008