Hucknall pub is Camra’s best for 2018

Nottingham Campaign For Real Ale (CAMRA) has announced its “Pub of the Year 2018” and “Cider Pub of the Year 2018”.

The Urban/City Pub of the year and overall winner is the Station Hotel in Hucknall – which features in our very own Notts Gots and the runner up is last year’s winner the Poppy and Pint in Lady Bay. The village winner is the Old Green Dragon in Oxton and the runner up is the Frame Breakers in Ruddington.

Pubs are nominated by Camra members and a shortlist created, following which volunteer members visit each one and judge based on a number of criteria, which include beer quality, warmth of welcome and general mix of clientele amongst other considerations. The Nottingham finalist now goes forward to be judged in the Nottinghamshire round of the Competition. Any member can nominate a pub and volunteer to judge, the process is run independently of the branch committee. There is no time limit as to how long a pub has been open to be nominated for judging, so newly opened pubs can be judged against long established ones.

The cider Pub of the Year competition is judged on a similar basis, except the emphasis is centred on the range and true quality of real ciders and perries served in the pub.

For the Pub of the Year competition, we again decided to select two winners to reflect the mix between the urban area, including the city centre, and Village pubs, this gives a fairer spread and allows the village pubs not to be forgotten.

Urban/City and Overall winner: Station Hotel, Station Terrace, Hucknall. The pub has been operated by the local Lincoln Green brewery since February 2017 following a refurbishment. There is a traditional bar and a large comfortable piano lounge along with a room at the rear featuring traditional pub games. The railway station and tram stop are nearby. There are twenty hand pumps, all dispensing a different beer or cider. There is also an impressive selection of gins and whiskys – 50+ of each. Missed your tram home? no worries you can stay the night in one of the hotel rooms. As one of the judges commented, “A great pub, well worth a return visit”.

Runner up Urban / City: Poppy and Pint, Pierrepont Road, West Bridgford. Last year’s winner serving the people of Lady Bay and those who travel to appreciate the homely welcoming atmosphere. Twelve hand pumps dispense Castle Rock beers plus guests, often from new breweries. There are a couple of real ciders and excellent food is served.

Village winner: The Old Green Dragon, Blind Lane, Oxton. The open plan pub is light and airy with four distinct drinking areas, with one designated as the snug. Outside a patio area has been created and at the back is an enclosed garden. Alongside the food there are six beers and two ciders on offer with local breweries featuring. Want to visit this pub to the north of Nottingham? see if you can find a driver with an electric car, they have charging points so the car is refreshed whilst you sup your pint.

Runner up Village: Frame Breakers, Ruddington. A traditional pub in the centre of the village run by Nottingham Brewery and featuring a number of their beers along with guest brews and a cider wall. Formerly the Bricklayers Arms it features an open plan layout with chunky furniture and a good food offering.

The Nottingham Cider Pub of the Year 2018: BeerHeadZ, located at the old cabman’s shelter at Nottingham Railway Station. The runner up is Doctor’s Orders in Carrington.

The Cider pub of the Year relies on nominations and a range of pubs were nominated this year. BeerHeadZ although only open a few months, impressed the judges with the quality of the real cider & real perry available. They are passionate about real cider from smaller makers and use a dedicated cider & perry wholesaler to source quality craft products. BeerHeadZ is a great ‘quirky’ new addition to the city.

Nottingham CAMRA Branch Chairman Steve Westby says “At a time when pubs continue to close it is pleasing that our volunteer panel of judges continue to find a wide selection of excellent local pubs to visit. The Station Hotel only reopened just over a year ago and has successfully brought in new and old customers and proved a good reason to catch the tram north. The team behind the pub do a splendid job in creating a successful, popular pub offering a good range of quality beers in a friendly atmosphere. The winner of the Village category, The Old Green Dragon in Oxton, shows that the pub can be an asset to the local community providing locals and visitors with a friendly welcome and a good choice of beer”.

The presentation for The Station Hotel, will be at the branch meeting on Thursday 29th March.

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