A public house also known as a pub is an establishment comprising of a bar and a restaurant where alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks as well as food are sold. Pubs also serve as social centres where people meet for talks, drinks, eating, relaxing and also to catch up on sporting events. Most also have a garden area where people can sit in the summer and children can also have a meal. Pubs in England can either be independently owned or owned by breweries or other corporations.
There are presently over 40,000 pubs in England and according to Statista, a statistics company based in the UK. There is however a significant drop in this number compared to the over 60,000 in 2000 which has been the highest till now. Several factors have been attributed among them, the ban on smoking in pubs in 2007, increased alcohol prices, reduced drinking practices among others. The pub culture is still thriving though seeing as many pubs are consistently improving their services and adopting new trends in a bid to attract more customers.
Most English pubs use the pay as you order system and the orders are placed at the bar. Drinks are either served from taps or bottles with most pubs which are owned by breweries mainly serving their own beer brands. Some popular beer brands served in almost all pubs include; lager, which is light in colour and served cold contrary to common British beer which is dark and served at room temperature, Guinness, Cider made from apples and an Irish beer known as Stout that is very dark and creamy. Beer is served in pints or halves which are smaller than pints. The pubs are also not limited to alcoholic drinks only as soft drinks are also sold.
The most common foods sold in pubs include; Toad in the hole, Fisherman’s pie, Bangers and Mash, Fish and Chips, Vegetarian nut roasts with also some specials and desserts also included in the all rounded menu. Games are also common in clubs with games such as darts and even traditional games such as Bat and Trap being played.
The pubs also have very intriguing names with most dating back to over 600 years ago and these names are common when giving directions in England. Government laws on drinking age are followed to the letter with 18 being the legal drinking age. People who are 16 and 17 years of age may have a glass of wine, beer or a cider with a house meal in specific areas of the pub and provided they are accompanied by an adult who orders the drink. It is also illegal to sell beer to an already drunk person and off sales are only done with the production of a photographic ID as proof of 21 years of age to avoid hefty fines and revoking of licences.
Most pubs are open for 12 hours mostly from 11am to 11pm mostly due to licencing with 24 hour licences being difficult to obtain and families with children are only allowed up to 9pm.
English pubs are an integral part of British culture and have a long and storied history. They have been serving as community gathering places, social hubs, and drinking establishments for centuries. Here's some more information about English pubs in England:
1. History: The tradition of English pubs dates back to Roman times when roadside inns served as resting places for travelers. However, the pub as we know it today can be traced back to the medieval period. Monasteries played a significant role in brewing and selling ale, and after the dissolution of the monasteries in the 16th century, taverns and alehouses began to emerge.
2. Atmosphere: English pubs are known for their cozy and welcoming atmosphere. They often feature low ceilings, wooden beams, open fires, and traditional décor. Pubs can vary in size, from small village pubs to large city establishments. They are usually frequented by locals and tourists alike, providing a friendly and sociable environment.
3. Drinks: Beer is the most popular drink in English pubs, and the country has a rich brewing tradition. You can find a wide range of beer styles, including ales, bitters, stouts, and lagers. Many pubs also offer a selection of ciders, wines, spirits, and non-alcoholic beverages. Pubs often have a range of hand-pulled real ales, which are served at cellar temperature and are an important part of British pub culture.
4. Pub Food: English pubs are known for serving hearty and comforting pub food. Traditional dishes like fish and chips, bangers and mash (sausages and mashed potatoes), pies, and roast dinners are commonly found on pub menus. Pubs may also serve snacks like pork scratchings (crispy pork rinds) or ploughman's lunches (a cold meal with cheese, bread, and pickles).
5. Pub Names: English pubs often have unique and quirky names that reflect local history, folklore, or landmarks. Names like "The Red Lion," "The Crown and Anchor," or "The Rose and Crown" are common. These names add character and individuality to each pub.
6. Pub Culture: English pubs are not just places to drink; they serve as community hubs. They are meeting places for friends, social clubs for various activities, venues for pub quizzes and live music, and even sometimes host local events or celebrations. Pubs often have a beer garden or outdoor seating area for patrons to enjoy during warmer months.
7. Opening Hours: Traditionally, English pubs had strict opening and closing times, but in recent years, regulations have become more relaxed. Pubs generally open from around 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. on weekdays, with extended hours on weekends. However, there are also some pubs that have obtained licenses to serve alcohol beyond these hours.
8. Pub Etiquette: When visiting an English pub, it's customary to order drinks at the bar and find a table or stand at the bar counter. Table service is less common in traditional pubs. It's also customary to offer to buy rounds of drinks for your group. In some pubs, you may need to find a seat or table yourself, especially during busy periods.
9. Pub Crawl: A popular activity among locals and tourists is the pub crawl, where participants visit multiple pubs in one evening, typically in a particular area. This allows you to experience different atmospheres, sample various beers, and soak up the pub culture.
English pubs hold a special place in the hearts of the English people and are an essential part of the country's social fabric. They offer a warm and convivial atmosphere, a wide selection of drinks, and a chance to experience the rich traditions of British pub culture.
WHAT IS THE MOST COMMON ENGLISH PUB?
The most common type of English pub is the traditional community pub, often referred to as a "local." These pubs are found in towns, villages, and residential neighborhoods across England. They are typically small to medium-sized establishments that serve as gathering places for locals to socialize and unwind.
Local pubs are known for their friendly atmosphere, where regular customers and neighbors often know each other by name. They are frequented by a mix of locals of different ages and backgrounds, creating a sense of community. Many locals consider their pub as an extension of their living room, a place where they can relax, chat with friends, and enjoy a pint.
These pubs often have a distinct character and are named after local landmarks, historical figures, or local history. Examples of common pub names include "The Red Lion," "The Crown," "The Rose and Crown," or the name of the village or town where they are located. The traditional exterior may feature signs and hanging baskets, and the interior is often adorned with wooden beams, old photographs, and memorabilia.
Local pubs typically serve a range of drinks, including a variety of beers, ciders, wines, spirits, and non-alcoholic options. They may also offer traditional pub food, such as pies, fish and chips, or Sunday roasts.
While there are many local pubs throughout England, it's important to note that each pub has its own unique character and can vary in terms of size, style, and offerings. So, while the local pub is the most common type, the specific pub you visit will have its own individual charm and atmosphere.
What do English pubs serve?
English pubs serve a wide range of drinks and often offer food as well. Here are some common offerings you can find in English pubs:
1. Beer: Beer is a staple in English pubs, and they typically offer a variety of beer styles. Real ale, also known as cask ale, is a popular choice. It is traditionally brewed and served at cellar temperature, often pulled from a hand pump. Other beer options include lagers, bitters, stouts, and craft beers. English pubs often showcase a selection of local or regional brews, allowing you to try different flavors and styles.
2. Cider: Cider is another popular drink served in English pubs. Traditional cider is made from fermented apples and comes in various styles, from sweet to dry. You might find both still and sparkling cider options.
3. Wine: Many pubs have a selection of wines available, including red, white, and rosé varieties. While beer is more commonly associated with English pubs, wine options are becoming more prevalent to cater to a wider range of tastes.
4. Spirits: English pubs typically have a selection of spirits, including whiskey, gin, vodka, rum, and others. You can enjoy these spirits on their own or as part of classic cocktails like gin and tonic or whiskey and soda.
5. Non-Alcoholic Drinks: If you prefer non-alcoholic beverages, English pubs usually have options available. You can find soft drinks, juices, mineral water, non-alcoholic beers, and specialty mocktails.
6. Pub Food: Many English pubs serve food, and it's an integral part of the pub experience. Traditional pub food tends to be hearty and comforting, featuring dishes such as fish and chips, bangers and mash (sausages and mashed potatoes), pies (e.g., steak and kidney pie, chicken and mushroom pie), ploughman's lunches (a cold meal with cheese, bread, and pickles), scotch eggs, and sausage rolls. Pubs may also offer burgers, sandwiches, salads, and a variety of appetizers or bar snacks.
It's important to note that the specific drink and food offerings can vary from pub to pub. Some pubs focus more on their beer selection, while others may prioritize their food menu. Additionally, some pubs may have seasonal or daily specials, providing further variety for patrons to enjoy.
What is a typical English pub beer?
A typical English pub beer is often referred to as real ale or cask ale. Real ale is a traditional style of beer that is brewed and served without the use of extra carbonation or pasteurization. It is typically hand-pulled from a cask or keg using a hand pump called a beer engine.
Here are some characteristics of a typical English pub beer:
1. Cask Conditioning: Real ales are conditioned and served in casks, where the beer undergoes a secondary fermentation process. This process allows the beer to naturally carbonate and develop its unique flavors.
2. Serving Temperature: English pub beers are served at cellar temperature, which is slightly cooler than room temperature. This temperature range enhances the flavors and aromas of the beer, allowing you to fully appreciate its character.
3. Bitter and Pale Ales: Bitter and pale ales are the most common types of real ales found in English pubs. Bitter ales have a moderate hop bitterness and a malty character, while pale ales tend to have a more pronounced hop flavor and a lighter color.
4. Malt-Forward Flavor: English pub beers often have a malt-forward flavor profile, with a balance between the malt sweetness and hop bitterness. They can exhibit a range of flavors, including caramel, toffee, biscuit, and sometimes fruity or nutty notes.
5. Lower Carbonation: Real ales have lower carbonation levels compared to some other beer styles. They tend to be smooth and have a softer mouthfeel due to the lower carbonation levels.
6. Hand-Pulled: Real ales are traditionally served by hand-pulling the beer through a beer engine. This process creates a gentle pour and helps maintain the natural carbonation and flavors of the beer.
It's worth noting that while real ale is a popular style, English pubs also offer a variety of other beers, including lagers, stouts, porters, and craft beers from both local and international breweries. The specific beer selection can vary from pub to pub, so you can expect to find a diverse range of beer styles to suit different tastes.
What is typical English pub food?
Typical English pub food is known for its hearty, comforting, and often traditional dishes. Here are some examples of popular English pub food:
1. Fish and Chips: This is a classic British dish consisting of battered and deep-fried fish (usually cod or haddock) served with thick-cut chips (French fries). It is often accompanied by mushy peas, tartar sauce, and a sprinkle of salt and vinegar.
2. Bangers and Mash: Bangers and mash is a simple and satisfying dish made with sausages (bangers) served with mashed potatoes (mash). It is commonly served with onion gravy or a rich meaty gravy.
3. Pies: Pies are a staple of English pub cuisine. They come in various fillings, such as steak and kidney, chicken and mushroom, pork and apple, and vegetable. Pies are typically topped with a pastry crust and served with a side of vegetables or mashed potatoes.
4. Ploughman's Lunch: A ploughman's lunch is a cold meal consisting of a selection of cheese, crusty bread, pickles (such as Branston pickle or pickled onions), cold cuts (such as ham or roast beef), and sometimes a boiled egg or a salad. It's a popular option for a lighter meal in pubs.
5. Sunday Roast: Sunday roast is a traditional British meal typically enjoyed on Sundays. It features roasted meat (such as beef, lamb, chicken, or pork) served with roasted potatoes, Yorkshire pudding (a fluffy batter pudding), seasonal vegetables (such as carrots, peas, and Brussels sprouts), and gravy.
6. Scotch Eggs: Scotch eggs are hard-boiled eggs wrapped in sausage meat, coated in breadcrumbs, and deep-fried until crispy. They are often served as a snack or appetizer in pubs.
7. Sausage Rolls: Sausage rolls are a popular finger food made with seasoned sausage meat wrapped in flaky pastry and baked until golden brown. They are a common pub snack or light meal option.
8. Platters and Sharing Boards: Many pubs offer platters or sharing boards that feature a selection of meats, cheeses, bread, olives, pickles, and other accompaniments. These platters are great for sharing with friends or as a nibble alongside your drink.
In addition to these classic dishes, you may also find burgers, sandwiches, salads, curries, and other pub favorites on the menu. The specific offerings can vary from pub to pub, and some pubs may also have seasonal specials or a focus on locally sourced ingredients.
TOP 10 ENGLISH PUBS IN ENGLAND
It's challenging to determine the top 10 English pubs in England as personal preferences and opinions may vary. However, here is a list of 10 renowned pubs that are highly regarded for their atmosphere, history, and quality of offerings:
1. The Eagle and Child, Oxford: This historic pub in Oxford has literary significance as a gathering place for the famous Inklings writers' group, which included J.R.R. Tolkien and C.S. Lewis.
2. The Ye Olde Cheshire Cheese, London: Located in the heart of London, this pub dates back to the 17th century and is known for its charming interiors and traditional British fare.
3. The Eagle, Cambridge: This pub is famous for being the place where Francis Crick and James Watson announced their discovery of the structure of DNA in 1953.
4. The George Inn, London: Situated near London Bridge, The George Inn is a well-preserved 17th-century coaching inn and one of the few remaining galleried inns in the city.
5. The Dog and Duck, London: This historic pub in Soho has been a popular meeting place for artists, writers, and musicians for decades, known for its lively atmosphere and traditional pub charm.
6. The Crown Liquor Saloon, Belfast: Located in Northern Ireland, this ornate Victorian pub is known for its beautiful architecture, stained glass windows, and unique booths.
7. The Turf Tavern, Oxford: Tucked away in the backstreets of Oxford, this pub is famous for its cozy atmosphere, hidden courtyard, and its long history as a favorite haunt of Oxford University students.
8. The Black Friar, London: Situated near Blackfriars Bridge, this Art Nouveau-style pub is known for its stunning interior with intricate decorations, including mosaic murals and a copper bar.
9. The Anchor Inn, Seatown: Nestled along the Jurassic Coast in Dorset, this charming pub offers picturesque views of the coastline and serves delicious seafood and local ales.
10. The Old Ferry Boat Inn, Cambridgeshire: Claiming to be England's oldest inn, dating back to the 6th century, this pub is located in a scenic village on the banks of the River Great Ouse.
Remember, this list represents just a small selection of the many wonderful pubs across England, and there are countless other pubs that offer unique experiences and delightful atmospheres throughout the country.
BEST ENGLISH PUBS IN ENGLAND
Determining the "best" English pubs in England is subjective and can vary based on individual preferences. However, here are some highly regarded English pubs known for their atmosphere, history, and offerings:
1. The Jolly Judge, Edinburgh: Located in Scotland, this historic pub is beloved for its cozy atmosphere, traditional decor, and extensive whisky selection.
2. The Nag's Head, Reading: A popular pub with a lively atmosphere, live music, and a wide range of craft beers on tap.
3. The Grapes, London: Situated in Limehouse, this riverside pub offers stunning views of the Thames River, a cozy interior, and a connection to Charles Dickens, who was said to have been a patron.
4. The Star Inn, Harome: Nestled in the picturesque village of Harome in North Yorkshire, this pub is renowned for its award-winning food, charming interiors, and cozy atmosphere.
5. The Old Joint Stock Pub and Theatre, Birmingham: Housed in a former bank building, this pub in Birmingham combines a historic ambiance with a theater upstairs, offering a unique experience.
6. The Salutation Inn, Ham: Located near the River Hamble in Hampshire, this 18th-century pub is known for its stunning riverside setting, excellent food, and welcoming atmosphere.
7. The Eagle, Farringdon, London: This historic pub is famous for being the location where scientists Francis Crick and James Watson announced their discovery of the structure of DNA.
8. The Hand & Flowers, Marlow: A renowned pub in Buckinghamshire, it holds two Michelin stars, making it the only pub in the UK with such distinction. Known for its exceptional food and welcoming atmosphere.
9. The Bell Inn, Aldworth: Nestled in a picturesque village in Berkshire, this traditional pub is famous for its thatched roof, warm hospitality, and being the starting point of the Ridgeway National Trail.
10. The Crown at Bray, Bray: Situated in the village of Bray, this pub offers a relaxed atmosphere and excellent cuisine, with a menu created by renowned chef Heston Blumenthal.
These are just a few examples, and there are countless other exceptional English pubs throughout the country that cater to different tastes and preferences. Exploring different pubs can be a delightful adventure, allowing you to discover hidden gems and unique experiences along the way.
OLD ENGLISH PUBS IN ENGLAND
Old English pubs in England are steeped in history and charm, often retaining their traditional architecture and atmosphere. Here are some notable examples of old English pubs that have stood the test of time:
1. Ye Olde Trip to Jerusalem, Nottingham: Claiming to be England's oldest inn, dating back to 1189, this pub is nestled beneath Nottingham Castle and offers a fascinating mix of history, legends, and a unique cave-like interior.
2. Ye Olde Fighting Cocks, St Albans: Recognized by the Guinness World Records as the oldest pub in England, dating back to the 8th century, this pub exudes historic character with its timber beams, low ceilings, and an attractive beer garden.
3. The Ye Olde Man & Scythe, Bolton: Tracing its origins to 1251, this pub boasts a rich history and is famous for its association with the English Civil War and the ghostly presence of the "Man in the Scythe."
4. The Olde Cheshire Cheese, London: Rebuilt after the Great Fire of London in 1666, this pub has been a popular haunt for centuries. It retains its old-world charm with multiple floors, narrow passageways, and cozy nooks.
5. The Bell Inn, Ticehurst: Dating back to the 14th century, this traditional pub in East Sussex features exposed beams, log fires, and a charming beer garden, providing a quintessential English pub experience.
6. The Old Ferry Inn, Bodinnick: Situated on the banks of the Fowey River in Cornwall, this 16th-century pub is full of character and offers stunning views. It has welcomed visitors for centuries, including renowned author Daphne du Maurier.
7. The Lamb & Flag, Oxford: Dating back to 1566, this historic pub has long been a popular gathering place for scholars and locals alike. It has retained its traditional ambiance and is famous for its literary connections.
8. The Red Lion, Avebury: Located near the ancient stone circle in Avebury, Wiltshire, this 17th-century pub features stone walls, oak beams, and a cozy interior. It is a great spot to relax after exploring the prehistoric site.
9. The George Inn, Southwark: Situated near London Bridge, this former coaching inn dates back to the 17th century and is one of London's few remaining galleried inns. It has a rich history and is managed by the National Trust.
10. The White Hart, Stow-on-the-Wold: A charming pub in the Cotswolds, this historic inn dates back to the 14th century. It boasts an inviting interior with open fires, traditional décor, and a warm welcome.
These pubs offer glimpses into England's past and provide a delightful setting to enjoy a pint and soak in the atmosphere of centuries gone by.
FAMOUS ENGLISH PUBS IN ENGLAND
There are several famous English pubs in England, known for their historic significance, unique features, or association with notable figures. Here are some examples:
1. The Eagle and Child, Oxford: This pub gained fame as a meeting place for the Inklings, a group of renowned writers including J.R.R. Tolkien and C.S. Lewis.
2. The Grenadier, London: Located in Belgravia, this pub is famous for its association with the Duke of Wellington's Grenadier Guards and its haunted reputation.
3. The George Inn, London: Situated near London Bridge, this inn has a rich history and is one of the few remaining galleried inns in the city.
4. The Lamb & Flag, Oxford: This pub, dating back to the 17th century, has a long-standing reputation as one of Oxford's oldest and most famous pubs.
5. The Ye Olde Cheshire Cheese, London: A historic pub off Fleet Street, it has been a popular haunt for centuries and was frequented by notable figures like Charles Dickens.
6. The Spaniards Inn, London: Located on Hampstead Heath, this pub has a history dating back to the 16th century and is associated with literary figures like John Keats and Charles Dickens.
7. The Eagle, Cambridge: Known for being the place where Francis Crick and James Watson announced their discovery of the structure of DNA in 1953.
8. The Mitre, Oxford: This pub, established in the 17th century, has been frequented by famous figures like C.S. Lewis, J.R.R. Tolkien, and Thomas Hardy.
9. The Royal Oak, London: Located in Borough, this pub is famous for being the place where Samuel Pepys watched the Great Fire of London in 1666.
10. The Old Bailey, London: Situated near the Central Criminal Court, this pub is named after the nearby courthouse and attracts legal professionals and visitors.
These pubs have gained fame for their historical significance, connections to notable individuals, or unique atmospheres. They continue to attract locals and tourists seeking a taste of English pub culture and a touch of history.