A NO frills pub in Stratford that does not even have a bar has received the ultimate honour.
The Stratford Alehouse – which has no music or gaming machines – has been included in the latest edition of beer drinkers bible The Good Beer Guide.
The family run micro pub on Greenhill Street has just one room and prides itself in the best old fashioned pub tradition by offering conversation and the finest cask beer.
Run by Bill O’Brien and his son-in-law Phil Atherton, the 50 customer capacity watering hole has gone from strength to strength since opening in 2013, winning CAMRA (Campaign for Real Ale) Shakespeare branch’s pub of the summer summer pub last year.
It now joins the New Bulls Head and the Bear as Stratford’s entries in the prestigious guide.
Bill originally got the micro pub idea after holidaying in Kent which is home to the first ever alehouse – the success of which has seen some 30 more start serving around the south east.
Phil told The Observer: “It is absolutely great to be included in the guide. It means a lot that real ale lovers appreciate what we are doing.”
The pub will be part of the Ale Trail at this weekend’s Stratford Town Centre Food Festival.
And Stratford Upon Avon Brewery – the town’s only brewery which started brewing last summer – has also won a place in the guide.
Rich Williams has rapidly grown the business to now supply a growing number of pubs both locally and regionally, as well as numerous beer festivals.
The brewery acquired its first pub in May, the Norman Knight in Whichford, which offers the brewery’s full range of ales, as well as food and other drinks.
The brewery is now in the process of further expansion to double its capacity from 50 to 100 casks per week, with the brewery and pub both taking on more staff to meet the demands of the growing businesses.