Appendix 4- The Real Ale Challenge

Appendix 4

The Real Ale Challenge –54 Different Pints

—“—Hound Dog
ClearwaterProper Ansome
St AustellTribute
CotleighBarn Owl
St AustellHSD
DartmoorDartmoor Best
Shepherd NeameSpitfire
—“—Maid in Devon
OtterOtter Ale
SharpsDoom Bar
Country Life Old Appledore
TintagelCornwall’s Pride
—“—Castle Gold
TintagelHarbour Special
St AustellTinners
Skinners Betty Stogs
—“—Willy & Kate Wedding Ale
ElgoodSpring Challenge
SkinnersCornish Knocker
MorlandOld Speckled Hen
Ruddles County
St AustellProper Job IPA
St AustellVentor ( bottled)
Springhead Charlies Angel
Green KingAbbot Ale
Wells Bombardier
Branscombe ValeBranoc
George GaleHSB
Courage Directors
BadgerBest Bitter
Hop BackCrop Circle
St PetersOrganic Bitter
Downton Brewery Apple Blossom
St AustellEndevour
SkinnersSet Sail
O’hanlonsYellow Hammer
CottageMallard IPA
Dolphin Inn, Newton FerrersDolphin
Mildmay Colours InnColours

Selecting my top five B&Bs or pubs was a positive doddle compared to trying to rank the beers that I drank. The task is not helped by the fact that we are so fortunate in having a plethora of excellent breweries in the south west, ranging from small back-yard outfits supplying the local area (like Country Life Brewery, Bideford) to the ubiquitous big boys (like St Austell) producing industrial quantities of ale and distributing it across the region. My assessment is also probably influenced a lot by the ambience- I mean, would I have rated my pint of Old Speckled Hen as highly if it had not been drunk with the backdrop of a setting sun outside the Sloop on the harbour side at St Ives?

Anyway, hesitantly dipping my toe into a subjective, deeply personal pool of controversy, I’ll have a go at my Top Five;

  1. Exmoor               Stag
  2. St Austell            Proper Job
  3. Skinners             Betty Stoggs
  4. Otter                   Otter Ale
  5. Tintagel               Castle Gold

Ask me another day though and chances are I’d give you a different five.

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