As possibly mentioned before, there is little Fuggles enoys more than discovering a great new place to enjoy good beer. Just such a happy occasion befell me on Friday night. I was alerted through the program from the Battersea Beer Festival to a number of real ale festivals held in South West London bars. I was particularly keen to check out the Eagle Ale House over the bank holiday, having never been there. It is certainly off the beaten track (several friends took quite a while to materialise), but that helps preserve its charm, as you don't have to fight your way to the bar in between protecting your small corner of the standing room only.
Safely esconced in a nice corner booth, I perused the bar and started with the Quantock Wills Neck, a late hopped Golden Ale, with just enough bitterness and citrus freshness to it. I was just considering which of the remaining 7 hand pumps to try when it was pointed out to me that the beer festival was in the garden. I am so used to "beer festivals" being advertised and turning out to be about 4 beers, that I had been quite excited to see 8 hand pumps. Having realised this is the normal level of choice I will definitely be going back.
So into the garden, and armed with a beer menu (a beer menu!) of 50 odd beers and a handful of cider and perries, I worked my way through what was on that night.
Top picks of the night:
Darkstar Partridge Best (Top beer of the night)
Green Jack Albion Mild
Sadly I didn't make it back on Saturday or Sunday to tick off the beers that hadn't yet settled on Friday, but I'll definitely be back at the Eagle, beer festival or not, for their wide selection, cosy atmosphere and great staff. And now at least I know how to find it.