2 February 2020
So to the highlight of the year, attempting to make Surrey look like an attractive pub destination for our American readers.
With a Sunday night in Walton-on-Thames to come (calm down, calm down), I start in Staines.
Perhaps not the most startling town in England, but you’re surrounded by runways and reservoirs and Runnymede and rugby fans.
It’s a a shame about the rugger.
It wasn’t too troubling in the Olde Red Lion on the edge of town.
But then these were normal folk, more interested in Molson Coors than mauling.
A delightfully dull beer range had Ghost Ship as the exotic guest, but this is London Pride country.
With late Sunday roasts being scoffed at the bar and window ledges I had to take my cool, decent Pride (3+) out with the smokers, who are always the most interesting of pubbers anyway.
Their delight in the French stuffing of our boys was palpable.
A mile walk down to posh Laleham where tempers were more frayed.
“Bring on Jonny Wilkinson” they probably said.
Or possibly “oy, more Dom over here my good man“.
It was chaotic, and the bar blockers didn’t help.
Pride or TEA, anyway, so Pride it was. Would I make it out before the pashminas and pooches attacked?
Into £4.40 a pint territory, so no chance of a tip, despite the attractive flower display set out for the purpose.
And to be fair, it was a second Pride drinking well in an hour, though noticably less chilled.
Hate rugger, love the extra turnover rugger brings to pubs.