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Username: trebles_all_round

Age: 160

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The Albion, Winchester

The Albion has now been reopened about six weeks, and... things don't look too promising.

The bar is currently as brightly lit as any operating theatre in which you may unluckily find yourself. The place is stark with walls devoid of any decorations. Someone described it as "sterile" which is as good an epithet as I could come up with. The place simply doesn't look very inviting. From the outside it looks like someone's front room... a front room which has just been re painted it, the curtains are waiting to be rehung and the halogen lights used to ensure you could see what you were doing are still the only form of lighting.

I am sure the Flowerpots' owner runs a good pub in Cheriton (I've not been there for ages) but, IMHO, trying to replicate that business model with the Albion is a mistake. For most Flowerpots visitors a trip there is an event which is pre planned and eagerly anticipated - and not without reason.

A trip to the Albion, on the other hand, for the majority of people that find themselves in there, is for an opportunistic pint before or after the train or some other event. No music, no Guinness, no payments by card can only serve to deter the curious passer by.

I cannot knock the quality of the beer - as you might expect from such as respected brewer - nor, indeed, the prices (Pots £3.00, Goodens £3.20 and Pots IPA (the 6% guest) at £3.40). Personally, however, I'd rather pay more per pint and be somewhere with a bit of personality.

Sorry, Albion, but you're not doing it for me at the moment.

10 Apr 2015 19:42

The Albion, Winchester

LoFi said "Something of a miracle turnaround by the current landlord - after many years of wavering between "Just about OK" and "God awful", this is now one of the best, most interesting pubs in Winchester."

I am sad to report that this owner has sold up and moved on for personal reasons. So long, and thanks for all the great beers.

Time will tell what the new owner makes of it. I have high hopes as reportedly the new owner is a local real ale brewer of some quality ales.

22 Jan 2015 17:08

The Albion, Winchester

In terms of variety of beer the Albion is easily the best pub in Winchester

Not a pint of Fosters, San Miguel or Greene King PA in sight. The lagers on offer at the moment.. Vedett, Kozel and Asahi Bitters: too varied to be able to list. The Albion specialises in smaller breweries. From their last tweet (@TheAlbion2) currently offered are beers from Burning Sky, Arbor Ales, Magic Rock. There is also a multitude of interesting bottled beers.

Into spirits? Their collection of whiskies is unequaled. Not to mention the variety of gins and vodkas available.

It's not the biggest pub in the world which means it can be a bit busy, especially on a Friday night.

Someone below said below it's a bit pricy. To be fair it's only the price of the bitters which may take you a bit by surprise as they may be closer to £4 than some of the other pubs in Winchester. The lagers are well below the most expensive in town. But you are paying for a well kept, quality product. Even if you pay 50p a pint more than your GK IPA that's only a couple of quid in the evening. Well worth it, IMHO.



24 Jul 2014 08:01

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trebles_all_round has been registered on this site since 10th December 2007