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(In Search of) Real Ale Off Licences

Published: Jul 6th, 2009 | Author: The Beeralist

One of the pleasures of my regular trips to Kent is a visit to the Cask & Glass off licence in Tonbridge.

Now there are many off licences a lot closer to where I live, but the Cask & Glass is a bit special in that it sells real ale from a cellar via handpumps. There are usually one or two different beers available and the guys who run the off licence are happy to supply takeaway containers if you don’t have one of your own.

On Friday they had British Bulldog from the Westerham Brewery and last night (Sunday) they’d just started a barrel of Harvey’s Sussex Best – my favourite beer. Both tasted superb and the Harvey’s Best especially was a nice end to a great weekend. The prices at the Cask & Glass are good too – most beers are £2.00 – £2.20 per pint. I think they do some draught cider too.

They also sell all the other things you’d expect an off licence to sell – including some interesting bottled beers, and balti peanuts!

If you want to visit the Cask & Glass it’s located in the back streets near the station in Tonbridge. Here is a Google map for the Cask & Glass off licence.

Now the Cask & Glass is convenient for me in that it’s right on my journey home from Kent, but I’m wondering why there aren’t more off licences that sell draught beer. It’s approx 50 miles from where I live but it’s the nearest one that I know about.

There is another one in Tunbridge Wells – The Bitter End but the last couple of pints I had from there weren’t brilliant so I’ve stopped going there.

I know you can get draught beer from breweries, and indeed I’ve done that from the Hogs Back Brewery in Tongham which is much closer to where I live but still a fair drive away. I gather also that the Surrey Hills Brewery sells draught beer too – I’ll have to give it a whirl when I find out exactly where it is.

Do you know of any real ale off licences? I’d really like to find one nearer my home in Woking ideally.

2 Responses to “(In Search of) Real Ale Off Licences”

  1. paul says:

    These are probably closer to Woking, although I can't say if you'd find them any easier to get to):

    Beer Essentials, Horsham (www.thebeeressentials.co.uk) – usually has half a dozen ales (Arundel Sussex Gold & Dark Star Festival are permanently available) at similar prices to the Cask & Glass. Plenty in bottles, too. Good place – well worth checking out.

    Kings Brewery, Horsham (www.kingfamilybrewers.co.uk) if you like the beer (it is dead cheap, mind). Opens 10.00 – 14.00 on Saturday, as well as weekday working hours.

    There is another Bitter End in Bromley South (www.thebitterend.biz)

    I tracked down the location of Surrey Hills via their website & Multimap – between A246 & A25, north of Shere.

    Good luck!

  2. The Beeralist says:

    Much appreciated Paul. I do like Kings beers and the Arundel Sussex Gold is excellent too. I might be driving down to Brighton soon so worth a detour.

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