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BITE user comments - ianbeer

Comments by ianbeer

The Grape and Grain, Crystal Palace

Popped in at lunch just to see what had happened to one of the worst pubs in London, the unlamented 'Jack Beards'. Very pleasantly surprised. Terrific range of beer, friendly staff and a good atmosphere. Recommended.

18 Aug 2009 03:13

The Nightingale, Balham

The Nightingale has just become the first Youngs managed house to stock a beer from a small independently brewery, Morrisey Fox's 'Pround of Pubs Best'. It's a malty 4% bitter. It won't last long so visit ASAP!

Let's hope it's the first of many.

19 Jul 2009 18:46

The Wheatsheaf, Borough

It looks to me as if The Wheatsheaf will survive. Why bother waterproofing the end-wall if it's going to be demolished? I look forward to the re-opening - if I'm right...

22 Mar 2009 03:16

Niksons Bar and Restaurant, Battersea

Closed. Premises re-opened as 'The Bolingbroke'. Part of small chain of up-market pubs / Gastropubs such as the Stonhouse in Clapham and Avalon on Balham Hill.

Have eaten there (very good) but not had a drink. Draught beers were Deuchars & Timothy Taylors Landlord. Presumably expensive.

25 Dec 2008 18:12

The Old Ship, Hammersmith

The Old Ship has been sold Youngs. Presumably this will result in better quality than recent contributors have mentioned. Might also mean higher prices though!

22 Sep 2008 15:29

The Spread Eagle, Camden

New managers from 31/3/08. In the process, a most wonderful manager leaves the licensed trade. A sad loss indeed. Good luck to the new couple.

1 Apr 2008 03:10

The Plough, Clapham Junction

Demolished January 2008

14 Jan 2008 20:01

Finch's, Chelsea

Name changed to Kings Arms from 23rd November 2007 following refurbishment.

17 Dec 2007 22:46

Crockers Folly, Maida Vale

The boards were off the windows on 30th Nov' and people were looking around inside. There was a van outside that belongs to a well known Lebanese restaurant. I wonder if this could be a clue to the future.

13 Dec 2007 21:20

The Kingfisher, Chertsey

Made my second visit a couple of weeks ago, once again on a riverside walk from Putney to Windsor. And, once again, despite only wanting a glass of tap water the service was absolutely top-notch. Very friendly and polite. The food still looks wonderful as well.

Strongly recommended.

27 Aug 2007 22:11

Rose Revived, Newbridge

Of dear! Some friends from Canada and the US asked if this would be a good place to stay. Seems marvellous as a pub so I instantly recommended it.

Alas - far from perfect. Repeated Emails from North America were never answered. Bookings had to be made by 'phone. Once there my friends found no hot water in their rooms. No apologies or refunds were offered. They came away with the general impression that this is a lovely pub/hotel but that the staff were disinterested.

Ah well, I suppose that's what happens when an ever expanding co. like Greene King get a little remote from their outposts. No motivation at a local level.

What a shame. It's one of the best located houses in the whole of the UK. What a pity it failed to live up to that. Sorry GK - only 3/10 for this this one.

10 May 2007 02:49

The Alexandra, Wimbledon

Just been here for dinner on a Wednesday evening. Ate in the restaurant section that used to be Finch's. Service was excellent and the food was as good as you would expect from Young's suppliers. My overseas companions were suitably impressed and, being American, were literally amazed by the quality of the Wells & Youngs bitter. Portions could have been a little larger and the smoke did get in from the rest of the pub. So... only 7/10 where it could have been 9/10.

Great crowd of friendly people in the front when we left 3 1/2 hours later. I'd recommend this place to anyone. Looks like Youngs are getting it right here - no, I don't work for them!

10 May 2007 02:26

The British Pilot, Allhallows

This pub was built in the between 1929 and 1932 as the hotel for the fledgling resort of 'Allhallows on Sea'. The developers of the new resort went bust but the Southern Railway Co. continued to pump money into the project. Charringtons pumped money into the pub itself and it's now a surprising survivor from another age.

Where the resort town failed, the caravan park has triumphed. This is mobile home land par-excellence. The permanent population is probably very small. The pub is making a go of it though - my word do they try hard. Everything from live bands to Sunday roasts. O.K. the beer is fizzy. I wouldn't usually say anything good about a pub with fizz but this deserves serious praise. Given where it is it could be genuinely awful - it isn't. The Landlady and her friends were truly welcoming when I arrived after a trudge over the marshes. Good people trying hard. Well done British Pilot.

28 Jan 2007 03:58

The Plough, Clapham Junction

A new planning application for 14 flats, 1 house, and a bar/restuarant (Youngs) has been lodged.

25 Jan 2007 19:06

The Plough, Clapham Junction

The pub is currently closed. Apparently there was a serious incident (on Christmas Eve?) in which the interior was badly damaged.

12 Jan 2007 18:33

The Plough, Clapham Junction

This is still a Youngs House. They have been trying to redevelop the site. As far as I know all the proposals, so far, have been rejected by Wandsworth Councils planners.

This one of the very few pubs which could make me spend an evening at home. I don't want to publicly describe what this place is like.

30 Dec 2006 17:59

The Spread Eagle, Camden

Regarding the comment of 29 Nov 2006....

Tut, tut. Naughty, naughty. I suspect this is an aberation. Look forward to a first class local once the new management has settled in. Has potential to be the best PUB in Camden. I'll give it 7 - could well deserve a 10 one day. Let's see...

22 Dec 2006 03:05

The Prince Alfred, Maida Vale

The Prince Alfred has recently been sold to Young & Cos Brewery. They'll probably be looking towards building an up-market clientele with an emphasis on quality food.

16 Nov 2006 23:21

The Riverside, Vauxhall

Visited early (before noon) on a Bank Holiday Sunday so, there were only 6 customers. It's got everything going for it. A gauranteed elite custom, very expensive fittings, Youngs Beers (4 available), apparently good food, polite service (the Poles speak good English) and, of course, a wonderful location.

I may well return to what is the best Airport lounge I've seen this side of Heathrow.

Utterly souless.

28 Aug 2006 03:57

The Grove, Balham

Just made 2 late evening visits - first time for a few years. Looks a bit 'bog standard gastro' but much improved and the staff were absolutely brilliant.

In fact so good that I thought I'd put a comment to that effect here. Well done to all - I suspect I'll be back!

3 Nov 2005 04:57

The Nightingale, Balham

Just refurbished and, thankfully, Youngs have only passed a light hand over this little gem. Not a drop of character has been lost and the improvements to the garden deserve a robust trade in the summer.

For some decades the Nightingale has appealed to all walks of life. It's as if it was the only pub in the village. It certainly does have an almost unique rural charm within London.

The management have had the foresight to retain (and build on) that long standing atmosphere.

Almost the last traditional pub in the area. Both beer and food are consistently excellent. Worth travelling to see it.

3 Nov 2005 04:51

The Kingfisher, Chertsey

Passed here yesterday during a riverside walk from Windsor to Putney. Gasping for a drink, I asked for a glass of tap water. Some pubs don't like that. Not here.

I was served with outstanding courtesy and even offered ice and lemon. There was no hint of being charged and no attempt to try and sell me bottled mineral water. Upon leaving the barman thanked for my custom and said he hoped I'd enjoy the rest of my afternoon.

Superb service! If I lived anywhere near here I'd definately visit regularly. The food looked great as well. I'm giving this 10 points.

24 Aug 2005 19:05

The Moon Under Water, Balham

A regular tells me that some of the more violent customers have been barred but it's filling up with under-aged drinkers. So I called in last weekend. It's true! - Some of these people can't be more than 14 and they all seem to get served. I had 1 pint and left .

It remains - by far - the worst pub in Balham. Might be worth a visit just for a masochistic laugh.

1 Apr 2005 20:10

The Nightingale, Balham

SUPERB..... The new management are dedicated to keeping this as a traditional pub. That's very rare in this area. Thorough refurbishment due in April 2005 but as a Pub and not a Bar/Concept etc., etc. .

Will remain very strong on support for local charities.

A remarkable House. Totally welcoming to all and fast becoming unique. Well-done the new hosts - who know me only by sight - no bias in this comment.

20 Mar 2005 01:21

The Beehive, Wandsworth

Closing on 19th April 2004. Apparently to be given a 'young - persons' makeover. Its last days as an old-fashioned boozer have seen it fall into decrepitude. Very average beer and only worth visiting for the last rites. Sad end to what was once one of the best traditional pubs in SW London.

5 Apr 2004 00:53

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