Monday 23 March 2009

Beers in Ripley

Beer in Ripley

On Saturday myself and the lovely Lisa ended up drinking in Ripley as one of our friends had arranged a get together there. Ripley is just off the A3 and back in the day was on the main road from London to Portsmouth.

Because of this old transport connection, and the large number of local alkies, Ripley has maintained an impressively large number of pubs for its size. We started in a lovely looking old pub, the Ship, with a pint of London Pride. Sadly it tasted a bit watery so we weren't overly impressed. The other beers on offer weren't very inspiring either, being Greene King Abbot, Hogsback TEA and the recently revived Courage Best. Quite why the rights to this boring beer have been bought by Wells and Young's is a mystery to me. When I first started going to pubs Courage and Allied pretty much had the local area sewn up so Courage Best was a very common beer. Universally known as Courage Worst it was an insipid weak brown beer lacking in taste. Wells and Young's have managed to capture this lack of character perfectly making a boring beer with a slight sweetness. 

When one of our friends who lives locally said that they had Surrey Hills Shere Drop on in the Half Moon we didn't take much prompting to move on. The Half Moon isn't as nice a looking pub, but there were lots of seats and the beer was far superior. Shere Drop is a pale beer with plenty of citrusy hops so despite the price (£3.20 a pint!) we managed to sink quite a few. With prices this high I can see why pub trade is falling, but sometimes it's worth it. 

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