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Review of the New Inn, Cropton. By Jerry Diccox

Article received on 07/04/2016

I thought you might be interested in my comments relating to a visit this week to the New Inn, Cropton. I believe it is in the area covered by your branch. You have my permission to publish it under your “members travels” section.

We drove the 25 miles or so from Thirsk to meet friends at The New Inn, Cropton. They were staying in Ravenscar, so had travelled even further. Fellow beer fans, they had found out about this much-vaunted pub serving beer from its on-site micro-brewery, so we had high hopes. This being a Tuesday evening, we were surprised to find car park almost full - surely a good sign. Inside, we were greeted by an impressive array of beers. So much to choose from. And therein lies the problem. I am accustomed to asking to try a sample (ie a mouthful or two) of a couple (but never more than three) of the beers on offer in a pub, before I make my choice. Immediately I got the impression from the barmaid that she disapproved of what she clearly regarded as giving away free beer (remember, I am talking here about two or three mouthfuls of two or three different beers, nonetheless she regarded me as a freeloader, out for a free drink). Reluctantly she let me try the Yorkshire Pale and the Classic. I chose a pint of the latter. Very nice. My friend was drinking the Chocolate Orange. Time for a second pint, back at the bar I asked to try the Chocolate Orange it being an unusual beer, I wasn’t sure if I would like it. “What is that your friend is drinking?” she asked, gesturing towards his almost empty pint glass - by which she mean’t, “Why don’t you just go and try a sip of his instead of expecting me to give you a freebie?” I ignored her hint and tried the sample she begruggingly poured me. I didn’t like it, so asked to try the Endeavour and the Warrior. By now, she was clearly fed up doleing out so much free beer. I mean, what a cheek: the four of us were only spending £50-£60 on food and drinks after all, what a cheek to expect to be able to sample the beer before we bought it! To her, we were clearly taking the piss! She pointed out that the pub offers 1/3 pint sample glasses (3 for £3.50) and she clearly wanted me to buy those (well, it’s better for business than giving away beer, after all, and why should a pub care if the customer wastes it?). She wasn’t interested in my answer that even 1/3 pint is too much of a beer you don’t like, and in any case, these “taster selections” are usually provided by pubs which understand that while drinkers may wish to sample lots of different beers, they can only manage smaller measures, or otherwise will be legless! Anyway, just to make her point, she made sure not to top up my pint once the head had settled (I had watched her do this to every other customer), so she had clearly had enough of me by then. If any further evidence was needed of how glad she was to see the back of us, after settling the bill for the rounds of drinks and the food, our “thanks, goodbye” greeting was, of course, completely ignored.

What a shame. You can’t fault the selection of beer on offer at this excellent little pub, but for me, the attitude of the bar staff (warm, welcoming, helpful, polite - or the opposite as in this case) is always a factor in influencing whether or not I’ll return to the pub, and obviously, I won’t return to the New Inn. At least the barmaid will be happy.

CAMRA member 244640

The Old Post Office Tavern by JOHN JENNINGS

The Old Post Office Tavern, Brompton By Sawdon.

Opening night impression from John and Loraine

My wife and I arrived at 20.00 and were a little concerned initially as there was only one vehicle , parked outside, and due to (as we were advised later) the absence of any outside lighting on the building we were wondering if we had the correct date!

However upon entry, we were pleasantly surprised to find the premises quite well attended.

It is fair to say the capacity is around thirty customers, and there is adequate seating capacity for all.

The ambience was nice, and the bar staff made us most welcome and there were some nice Christmas decorations dotted around the bar which added to the festive spirit.

On the matter of the outside lighting, we were advised that due to “issues” the signage was put on the premises the day before start of business, and the outside lighting will be some number of weeks before fitment!

We were advised that the customers were predominantly from the village, which may account for the lack of vehicles. Bearing in mind there is no specific parking area outside and the immediate area outside is a clearly marked “Bus stop”, may be cause for concern and frustration for any visitors who do not know the area.

On offer on the opening night (At a special price) were four beers, all of differing styles and a nice range of specific gravity`s, ranging from 3.7-5.2, something for everybody as my wife commented.

As would appear the norm, sample bottles showing the colour of the beers were alongside the pumps.

Listed on the sign were five ciders, again covering a nice range of tastes and SG`s the top SG being 7.2 and we were assured was in great form!

 One comment from a member of the public referred to the ciders being dispensed from “cardboard boxes “in full view of the public!  This observation may be something the management may wish to address in the future but we did not see this as an issue!

There was a nice range of none alcoholic drinks available for the nominated drivers, and a range of peanuts were on the bar free to customers. There appeared to be a full range of crisps and snacks available for purchase.

At the end of the bar were, the current edition of the Ouse booser, this was the only evidence of Camra  merchandising resource apparent, however we were not able to confirm this as the bar staff were kept quite busy as this was opening night!

We had a stay of approx. two hours and left quite happy, with the evening, there may be a few teething issues, notably parking and lighting, but hopefully these issues will be overcome in the future.

Rosie & Phils day out

Malt 'n' Hops

On Saturday 25 October we got on the Coastliner at Staxton and travelled to Malton for an afternoon of beer tasting.
Our first port of call was The New Malton Inn. Only two of the three pumps were available as we entered this busy eatery. Both pumps were occupied by The Hop Studio beers; Blonde (3.5%) and XP (4.0%).
Next, a first visit for me to Rory's Bar. This is another eating house with two hand pumps. Both Wold Top on our visit. Bitter (3.7%) and Worts N'Ale (4.1%).
Moving on to The Yard. Bitter disappointment here. The hand pumps have been reduced by half. Only one left, Great Yorkshire Yorkshire Classic (4.0%). Yorkshire Blackout is now on keg.
The Spotted Cow was the next venue. Adnams Old Ale (4.1%), Navigation Columbus 1492 (4.4%) and Tetley Bitter (3.8%). Love the Tap Toom in this pub.
Finally, The Blue Ball. Great Yorkshire Blackout (5.0%), Tetley Bitter (3.8%) and Timothy Taylor Landlord (4.3%). Lucy the Great Dane kept us company, briefly, until she was distracted.
All too soon it was time to catch the bus home. Another pleasant afternoon in this North Yorkshire market town.

(Many thanks to Phil & Rosie for this contribution.)