Tuesday 5 January 2010

Pubs U'll Like

The Brown Dog in Barnes has earned a lot of accolades over the years, so I'm sure they're not that bothered about my penn'th worth but I do feel you should give praise where praise is due, and it's a lovely pub.

We spent New Year's Eve in there having a couple of quiet pints of excellently kept Twickenham Original (4.2%) - an excellent supping bitter with a lovely nutty Amontillado end to it - and Winter Cheer (4.5%), a warming, dark, slightly spicy pruney flavour, with a fresh bitter end.

The food is always good value and top quality, the service is always friendly and they always have two handpulls on, which I've only ever had to ask for a replacement due to it having gone, once.

I've also got high hopes for Citizen Smith in Putney from the people who bought you Lost Society and Lost Angel in the Clapham/Battersea area.

It's got a good beer selection (although they do seem to be trying to hide their cask selection at every available opportunity behind an array of napkin/straw holders and cocktail menus) and you can choose from Sierra Nevada, various Meantime and Aspall's on draught, amongst others, and although they only had Sharp's Nadelik when I was last in (in top nick in their defence), I usually see an array of different guest cask beers on offer and I've not had a bad pint yet.

They've also got a nice idea about table service where possible; the only problem with this is that a) they don't seem to have enough staff on to do that until about 6-7pm in the evening and b) if you want to be a predominantly beer-led bar, encouraging people to sit down and wait for their drinks whilst you slice lemons for the cocktail menu tends to annoy beer drinkers - and given that when I have been in the last four times it's been 99% beer drinkers I'd suggest that judicious decisions on immediate service would be more advisable.

However, those are the low points, the pizzas are good with some standard and truly bonkers toppings strewn throughout the menu and it's a significant improvement on any of the premises' previous incarnations and the beer is very well priced, so if they can get the service element right then I've got high hopes for them indeed.

That's all for now folks, stay warm out there!

1 comment:

The Beer Justice said...

Hi there. Thanks for the head's up on this (and Ben McF's recommendation in Time Out). I dropped in to Citizen Smith last night for a sharpener. An excellent 35 strong beer list including cask, keg and bottle that any beer lover would find hard to resist with "grown up" tasting notes for each. Really busy, happening vibe too - even if I was the oldest in there by about 20 years. I will return. Thanks again.