Another year, another trip to Englefield Green, for a fourth GBG pub in a village you’ve never heard of.
Don’t lie, you’ve never heard of it, though the legions of beer “tickers” (ugh !) will no doubt be familiar with Egham and its infamous United Services Club with a gazillion different hoppy beers to taste.
Englefield looks like an Egham suburb, and it’s only 20 minutes from the station, but feels a different world.
To the south, perhaps our finest looking University;
and to the north, the vast spread of Windsor Great Park.
Some way from the eponymous central green, the Bailiwick has me fearing the worst, as the word “Phoenix Original” stare out at me from the WhatPub description.
Yes, a Brunning & Price dragging Rochdale’s finest kicking & screaming into suburbia.
I went local.
Having told you I never go for the tiny brewery, I went for the Guardsman. That’s the subliminal impact of a little hat on the pump clip. Works for Rosey Nosey as well.
Hilariously, the bar towel reads “Banter & Pints“. A less suitable slogan I couldn’t imagine. “Brokers & Prosecco” would work.
Lunchtime was winding down, and inevitably a large group chose to stand around at the bar, rather than a) sitting down or b) getting out of the pub.
I found a table (with beer mat !) near gentlefolk in jumpers, and waited for the inevitable “splitting the bill” fun.
My pint was everything you expect, and nothing that you hope for (NBSS3) So it’s cool, well presented and without haze, but lacks the sparkle of the best, and fastest selling, cask.
Here’s a close up for the purists among you.
So let’s be clear.
- Brunning & Price have some of the highest customer service anywhere
- They make a real effort to put local beer on, which is nice..
- If you like people who say “Excuse me” unnecessarily, you’re in for a treat.
- I hardly ever see anyone actually buy a pint while I’m there.
- They’re not pubs.