Picture: What's Brewing editor Ted Bruning pulls the first pint and is
presented with a brace of pheasants by Andy & Sue.
[Picture supplied by Ad LIB Partnership]
Another former Greene King pub once threatened with closure and now in the hands of a free trader is the Black Horse, Rampton - it's in the same ownership as the Chequers, Orwell. GK continue to supply both their own beers and also from their guest list; a recent visit found IPA and Abbot, Old Speckled Hen and Draught Bass. The food side is still being developed but a full menu of home-cooked food is available from Thursday through to Sunday lunch.
Maurice and Linda, the new team in the Admiral Vernon, Over, have big plans for this well-situated Charles Wells pub. In the short term, a much-expanded range of real ales is planned. Maurice has been impressed with the enthusiasm of the locals for the real thing - at his previous pub in Hemel Hempstead he'd only shifted two firkins a week. In the longer-term, a major remodelling of the interior is planned, along with innovations on the food side (which will be especially pleasing to lovers of Indian cuisine).
The long-delayed replacement Fox in Bar Hill (Punch Taverns) opened just before Christmas.
Still called the Fox, it has a large L-shaped open-plan interior and sports the pseudo-domestic décor currently
fashionable among pub-chain designers: lots of light wood, framed prints, ornaments on glass shelves etc.
Some elements, such as the fireplace, verge on the risible. Real ales are Greene King IPA,
Marstons Pedigree and Draught Bass. Food is served up till 9.30: there's a standard menu plus
specials. Not a pub to get the pulse racing, but virtually anything would have been an improvement on
the keg-only vomitarium that was its predecessor.
[See ALE 303.]
There were concerns recently over the viability of three Greene King pubs near one another in Harston: the Queens Head, the Pemberton Arms and the Three Horseshoes. The latter has now opened a "Crayfish Restaurant and Oyster Bar".