Three days back from Dorset, three days of mild cold turning into raging man flu.

My planned day in London exploring new Beer Guide pubs already scuppered by you-know-what, I gave up on meeting Stafford Paul and Reading Quinno as well as a Prolapse gig in Hackney.

But Quinno, a caring soul, reminded me I was a wuss and that beer cures all known ailments (source:PHE), so after four Lemsips I gave in and got the train to Aldgate. #PubMan.

Worth it for this view alone.


That East London

Now Tandleman (Peter) knows a bit about beer, and he’s no blind fan of London cask (

He was curating the beer fest at Aldgate’s Dispensary, probably the premier cask pub in E1, a perfect half-way stop on the way to Hackney.

On the way I got to pay last respects to an old favourite;

Farewell Still & Star

The Dispensary was quite smart, almost gastro, when I visited last year.

But beer fests bring out the drinkers, and at 2.30 this could have been the City Arms in Manchester.

They’d roped in one of the brewers (Thames Side, whose own Porter was excellent) to help with the beers, while the Tand looked after quality control by tasting the beer. It’s very important to taste the beer.

Cooling jackets meant cool beer, perhaps still a degree above Manchester but three below London norms.

All spot-on, and all the classics. Workie Ticket, Cwtch, Tribute, Plum Porter, Hawkshead. NBSS 3.5-4 the lot, and £4 the pint. It can be done.

Within 2 pints my man flu was gone.

The banter was great, a masterclass in taking your pint back, and got better as the incomparable E joined us to debate the world’s best pubs.

We left when the credit ran out, and the walk down to the loos (something akin to the catacombs of Rome) started to cause Quinno’s knees to creak.

Not just soap

A great London pub. There, I’ve said it.


  1. We’d hoped to go to the Still & Star when we were in the area recently & were disappointed to see it had closed.Did you see the sculptures of the horses running through water nearby ? It is my favourite of all in That London -absolutely fantastic

    Liked by 1 person

  2. “Worth it for this view alone.”

    Interesting contrast between old and new.

    “But beer fests bring out the drinkers, ”

    A bit like was being bandied about at Paul Bailey’s blog; you can have a beerfest at a single pub. 🙂

    “It’s very important to taste the beer.”

    I tell my wife that constantly but there are times when she justs rolls her eyes.

    “Not just soap”

    It looks like some sort of dip on either side of the candle.

    “A great London pub. There, I’ve said it.”

    No argument here. 🙂


    PS – “Hee was curating the beer fest ”

    Is that a new gender neutral noun?


    1. Ooh, a dip. What would you dip in it ? Answers on a postcard to Russ folks.

      Interesting debate on Paul’s blog I thought. You may be surprised to know that one chap (Ben Viveur) told Tand on his blog it was a boring range of beers that wouldn’t attract the tickers. “Boring”.


      1. Who wants to attract the tickers anyway? They only drink thirds of beers they’ve not heard of before, the more obscure and lower quality the better. Great list of beers that will bring proper drinkers out in force!

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Don’t be silly, they’d be queuing up for the Speedway Stout, and they’ll split 3 pints between several panda pop bottles to sell on the black market.

        Plum Porter – interesting one that, I don’t think it’s anywhere near as nice as it used to be. Seems really sweet and chemically these days to me. Has it changed or have I?

        On reflection I think you’d better just have Bass.

        Liked by 1 person

      3. Well I haven’t seen Plum Porter quite as much as previous couple of years, but in a random non-Beer Guide pub in Portsmouth recent it was sublime (though I could see why some would struggle with the flavour). No, still works for me.

        Liked by 1 person

      4. Ah sneaky, was just about to ask what BRAPA had to do with it! Best give it another go next time I see it then.

        Not been to the Dispenary, but next time I’m in East London (could be 2022) will call in!

        Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s