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Hops, Crewe

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user reviews of Hops, Crewe

please note - reviews on this site are purely the opinion of site visitors, so don't take them too seriously.

As you approach this place, it feels like it is going to be similar to a wine bar or a restaurant. But the interior has the feel of a micro pub. Although it is slightly larger than most micro pubs and it certainly pre-dates the micro pub scene. 6 ales and 6 ciders or perrys were on (although looking at the last review, I may have missed the 2 ales on gravity) - Townhouse Barney's Stout, Raw Grey Ghost IPA, Hopcraft Queen Anne's Revenge, Cwrw Ial Kia Kaha, Red Willow Stateless & Seamless, Ross-on-Wye Broome Farm Perry, Snails Bank Tumbledown & Very Perry, Lilleys Merry Monkey & Abrahalls Lily The Pink & Slack Alice. There were a fair few customers in and it had got much busier as I left to continue my Sunday evening jaunt around the town. My favourite pub in Crewe, on this evidence.
blue_scrumpy - 22 Jan 2017 20:18
Has it really been 5 years since I last commented on this place. Doesn’t time fly when you lose both your parents ?!

Anyway, it continues to be one of the best pubs in town. There have been a few minor changes recently, which I think are for the better. Firstly, in addition to the six handpumps, there are now 2 or 3 beers available on gravity (the casks are in the room behind). There have been a few teething problems with this, in regards to advertising the existence of these beers, but hoe there is a board with pimp clips, next to the handpumps. Also, one of the keg-fonts is now dedicated to “Craft keg” – usually English. Not noted before is that the left-hand pump is usually reserved for dark beers. Today it was the gorgeous Bristol Beer Factory Milk Stout.

I’ve not noticed the bar being “clogged up with locals standing”, but I can understand how it can easily become so, as it isn’t very big. In fact the whole place could do with being larger. Size not being helped by the tendency to have a small number of large tables, rather than a large number of small ones. There is a room upstairs, but I’m not sure if it’s normally open. Luckily, good weather means the place rapidly spills out onto the terrace outside. This must be the most relaxing place to drink in town, the only drawback being the view, which was a car park, is a building site, and will be a leisure centre.

8/10 – probably the best beer in town

Martinsh - 21 Dec 2015 00:12
Still a top pub with an excellent selection of ales, a couple of which were new to me, as well as ciders and continental bottles. Barman very friendly and knowledgeable about his products as well as decent fellow drinkers. Can't decide whether I prefer the Borough Arms or not - they are both cracking pubs.
Stamfordian - 23 Nov 2015 00:13
I really liked this place and would say it's the best pub in crewe (which isn't hard). Anyway great range of beers and bottles but the chubby girl behind the bar is surly and has zero personality. She threw the pack of crisps on the bar towards my girlfriend and didn't thank us for taking the glasses back. Send this wiman to charm school or replace her with a traffic cone.
Caskales - 7 Sep 2015 12:45
I was in here last month and what a lovely unusual surprise. Very welcoming staff, lovely laid back atmosphere, good beer, and very good selection.
canarly - 31 Mar 2015 18:05
Vying with the Borough for range of continental beer, but seems a bit cheaper. Not at all a traditional pub, quite reminiscent of bars I've visited in Belgium (hello Brugse Biert'je). Not been full when I've been in but seems well frequented. A beacon in the dross that are most of the pubs in Crewe
gordonthemoron - 31 Mar 2015 14:59
Far from being a traditional boozer in name and appearance, it however ticks the boxes for lovers of traditional beer. Very nice.
16jamesdoc - 29 Oct 2013 16:26
Very busy today, and deservedly so. A good choice of ales and a huge choice of continental draught and bottled beers, some of which were new to me. The place has been very professionally set up and is well run by efficient and friendly bar staff. My pint of 4.5% dark mild was tasty and in very good condition.
Stamfordian - 8 Sep 2013 00:36
Nice attempt at a Belgian cafe bar that makes a change in a town full of standard pubs. Strangely incongruous setting close to a Salvation Army mission and a few other unlikely buildings and it could be a bit hard to find for the first-time visitor but it's well worth the trouble.

Nice selection of bottled and draught foreign beers and well-kept real ale on handpull. Friendly service and the prices are realistic.
djw - 27 Jul 2013 12:15
Nice attempt at a Belgian cafe bar that makes a change in a town full of standard pubs. Strangely incongruous setting close to a Salvation Army mission and a few other unlikely buildings and it could be a bit hard to find for the first-time visitor but it's well worth the trouble.

Nice selection of bottled and draught foreign beers and well-kept real ale on handpull. Friendly service and the prices are realistic.
djw - 27 Jul 2013 12:15
A very unique pub, set in the style of a Belgium bar. Furniture is from an old school or faith school, it really adds to the ambience and in its simplicity it makes this pub a not-to-be-missed pub. Five first class ales on, mostly from local breweries, one is a regular brewed for the pub. Many Belgium beers on draught, and hundreds of bottles to choose from. Very friendly pub, everyone is welcome, set just on the edge of the town Center sandwiched between the rebuilt giant Tesco store, and next to the old railway church.
Kez1 - 1 Mar 2012 08:15
Feels like an old school building that has been turned in to a cafeteria/bar. Awash with council 'care' workers on this visit. Plenty of bottled Belgian beers and a few ales on. I tried a pint of Faithless V - a Macclesfield brew which wasn't particularly nice.
anonymous - 27 Oct 2011 16:51
Great selection of beer including a wide range of belgian bottles and 5 cask ales.
reviews4udirect - 12 Jun 2011 01:16
While working in the area made a special trip to see what this place was like. Very impressed, a choice to rival the nearby Borough. divided between handpumps, draught fruit beer and the bottled collection contained within the total non-pub decor. Spent a superb evening sitting outside putting the world to rights. .
Cotnap - 23 Sep 2010 22:43
WOW! What can I say about this little oasis of beer heaven, smack bang in the middle of Crewe.

Not generally acknowledged for the quality of its drinking establishments, most of Crewe's pubs tend to be of the 'brass and glass' variety selling the usual superchilled, creamflow and alcopop garbage.

Hops' entry and review in The Good Beer Guide 2010 says it all really. A Belgian style caf bar offering over 100 Belgian, continental and British bottled beers, catering for everyone's tastes; three cask ale hand pumps (generally 1 dark ale/stout and 2 lighter, hoppier offerings) and a selection of Belgian beers, lagers and fruit beers on tap - or a fancy frothy coffee if you're that way inclined!

The vibe is that of a friendly, family run pub, which whilst not particularly catering for children, makes you feel comfortable and safe enough to know that well behaved youngsters are welcomed during the day and early evening. Yob and lager-lout free, their choice not to stock alco-pops and shots means the clientele is made up of the more discerning drinker, with a character and age mix rarely seen in a single establishment.

The small bar hogged by locals isn't as much of a problem as other reviewers make out - I've experienced much worse (regulars sat at stools covering the full width of the bar, completely unwilling to make way!). The bar isn't that small and whilst the regulars may crowd the bar a little as they make conversation with the bar staff, they are always polite and kindly move to one side to allow other patrons to see what's on offer and place their orders.

The bar staff are very pleasant, friendly and also knowledgeable about the range of beers on offer, willing to offer suggestions should you want to try something different and out of your comfort zone. I have discovered many new taste sensations this way.
IPRarely - 16 Aug 2010 11:52
The more I go to this place, the more I like it.

Since my last review they have now started doing food weekday lunchtime, though it appears to be basically only sandwiches. They are now one of the few accredited agents of Orval in this country.

I've never had problems with the place being crowded, but I do wonder why some people feel the need to stand at the bar when there's only room for 2 people there and the rest of the place is empty !!

Have upped my rating - now 8
Martinsh - 5 Jul 2010 14:25
There are good and bad points about Hops.

The Good - excellent range of drinks, resonable prices, good location, nice beer garden out the front.

The Bad - The regulars seem to think they own the bar and crowd the small area making it diffiicult to get a drink (I know this isn't unique to this pub but this one has a particularly small bar area which means it's more irksome than usual). If you're going in the afternoon/early evening make sure you like kids as someone will inevitably have their baby with them. The landlady can be snotty, but the rest of the staff are nice.

On balance, it's a decent enough place and worth a visit.
4eyedspy - 3 Jun 2010 10:07
Finally got aroudn to going to this a couple of weeks ago. Enjoyed my visit (and the beer - Red Diesel) but thw wholse experince weemed rather flat for some reason which I couldn't put my finger on. Maybe it was the minimalist decor - but that seems to be deliberate.

P~lease note that the sign saying "we regret there is no food available today" is ALWAYS there !
Martinsh - 26 Apr 2010 23:34
Former wine bar just outside the town centre that has thankfully seen the light and turned to beer. It's modern and airy, with polished wood and furniture giving a definite contintental cafe-bar feel, although it's pretty small and cosy and not without character. 3 handpumps dispense microbrewed ales, with Acorn Madness, Titanic Iceberg and a stout, the brewer of which unfortunately escapes me, available. The Iceberg was in good form. A wide selection of Continental beers are also available.
As is often the case for such places, it has a 'library' of beer related literature, a welcome sight. A pleasant beer garden is situated at the front and overlooks the partially demolished Christ Church. The bar has made the GBG 2010.
Although it's not traditonal as such, I enjoyed it here and it's good to see an addition to the modest Crewe real ale scene- it could yet rival the Borough Arms! Definitely worth a visit.

Carlurmston - 7 Apr 2010 16:33

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