I wrote last nights post about beer range bullies in Heathrow, at the end of a day in London with decent pubs and average beer.

Passing Euston on the way back to Camden to collect a couple of teenagers from a metalcore night, I thought “Ah, Bree Louise“. As you do.  It might be my last chance before the diggers move in as the pub gets demolished to make way for HS2.

Bree Louise.PNG
That London
23 Real Ales !!!!

Now if any London pub divides opinion, it’s the multi award-winning Bree Louise.  Look at the pub review sites and you’ll see that for some folk it’s come to symbolise what’s wrong with London pubs. Vast ranges, inconsistent beer.

Personally, I’ve had beer between NBSS 2 and NBSS 3.5 over a number of visits.  Last time there, a duff pint from the barrel was changed with bad grace.

But it’s a classic London local.  So good I popped in here after City beat Sunderland in the League Cup Final in 2014. Even then I had to pop in the Euston Tap for cooler beer.

Classic seating

But quibbles aside, a popular pub is a popular pub. As always, the Bree was bustling yesterday.  A good mix of folk providing the same sort of atmosphere you get in Stapleford’s Horse & Jockey or Stockport’s Magnet.  Folk who enjoy their beer but don’t obsess over it.

A bit of a Post Grad/rugby crowd vibe last night, which at least meant the beer was “selling like hot cakes” for a change. Resisting the Plum Porter was a mistake.

I was lucky to get a seat, even if it was next to the loos.  The smoking ban has at least ensured a proportion of a pub’s custom will sit outside even in sub-arctic weather.

Hard core

At the bar I asked a Welsh chap what I should drink.  You should always ask a Welshman when the question is about beer.

He said go for the New River Five Inch Drop. Luckily it wasn’t an 8% mango sour.  The beer in the Bree tends to stick to the relatively mainstream, style-wise at least.

This is Craft

This was excellent, cool and very hoppy (shock), one of the best pints I’ve had here (NBSS 3.5).

Traditionally it’s been the beer from the barrel that’s struggled in the London heat, so I thought I’d end my night with Stod Fold Dark, hidden in the bottom row of casks.

A head on the beer from the barrel

I cannot lie; this was nectar, one of the best pints anywhere this month (NBSS 4).  The beer does come from Halifax, mind, so you should expect the best.

NBSS 4 Bingo

So I signed the form to record my protest.  It’ll be the signature that looks like it came from Guido Fawkes after being stretched.

Save Bree Louise


Thanks for the memories. And best wishes to all the staff affected.








  1. I have been in the Bree Louise once on the 3rd November 2007,i had a drink of Doom Bar,which was a decent drink,there was also GK IPA and some stuff in barrels.
    I was lucky enough to do the Magnet when it was a Wilsons house.

    Glad you like the atmosphere in the Horse and Jockey,it used to have a very rough reputation in the early 80s when it was an Ind Coope tied house with no real ales on,locals only from Stabbo or Sandiacre.
    Nice to see a pub like that which i have seen closed for a while,get reopened by an independent owner and have good choice of real ales on the bar,the Horse and Jockey Bitter is brewed by Full Mash which is a five minute walk from our house..

    Liked by 1 person

      1. If you do ever visit my home town of Stapleford again, Martin ,you should give Larry’s a try,it is just down from the Horse and Jockey,it opens at 9am every day and always has one decent real ale on and always local,it has been extended and you will see when you go in how pro Forest Stapleford is.
        The Nags Head & Plough was a big Forest pub,the Old Cross and Midland still are,the chip shop even had a photo of the Forest squad behind the counter.
        We do love where we live,even if it is a bit rough.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. I went in for the first time earlier this year. All beer was well kept, performed well and served well. I was with someone who also liked the ciders they had on.

    I went back weeks later, the same cider was still on – and tasted of strawberry vinegar, the staff were kids with scant regard for anything and the pricing seemed well over the top compared to the first visit.

    But the beer was the right temp and generally in good nick. So yes, inconsistent but then again I feel the Euston Tap has lost its way a bit too.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Inconsistency has been the word, so I was pleased to find the beer in good form yesterday. Do ciders go off in a different way to ales ? They’re not all strong 6% ciders,either, particularly the newer flavoured ones, which are an acquired taste.

      Haven’t been to Euston Tap since I stopped making work trips into London, must remedy.


      1. No idea why that came down an anon.

        The ciders they keep in boxes and really should be refrigerated, at least when not being served, i.e. overnight. Given I went in August and how stuffy that pub actually got on both occasions, its just going to turn the ciders quicker.

        I personally think that box ciders will degrade more or less the same as cask beer, regardless of strength.

        Liked by 1 person

  3. The two casks on the right of the top photo are stooped at such a steep angle, that I’d be surprised if they contained anything apart from dregs. I certainly wouldn’t risk anything from them!

    I’ve only visited the Brie Louise once, and wasn’t impressed. Your comment Martin, about a seat next to the loos, reminds me of my own visit; along with the relatively mainstream beer styles it tends to stock. Nothing wrong with that per se, it’s just that many are from obscure, “one man and his dog breweries”, which means the quality is often suspect to start with. Alright if you’re a “ticker” I suppose, but not a pub I’ve been in a hurry to re-visit.

    I doubt I’ll get the chance now, what with HS2 on the horizon, so whilst I personally won’t miss the pub, I’m very mindful that it is someone’s livelihood, and quite possibly their home as well. This applies equally to the pub’s staff.

    I’m also aware the pub has many devotees and people who are happy to call it their local. Unfortunately the country’s need for additional rail capacity means a much-loved London institution will bite the dust. Of course, if British Rail hadn’t axed much of the former Great Central line, back in the sixties, we wouldn’t be in this situation now, and the Brie Louise would still have a future. However, we only ever see the short term picture in this country.

    ps. The Euston Tap reminds me of drinking in a public toilet, so I tend to avoid the area around Euston when I fancy a drink.


  4. “The beer in the Bree tends to stick to the…” carpet, surely?!

    Agree with the comment that Euston Tap has lost its way a bit – it even smelt like drinking in a public toilet when I was last there.


      1. Quite, Manchester is quite dull and samey having spent its time trying to be like London. Which is what Leeds is now repeating.

        Sheffield all the way.

        Liked by 1 person

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