Three keg ciders and a perry are on tap at this neat Victorian pub on a manicured Kensington backstreet. The pecunious locals often bring their drinks out to a little front terrace. Adulterated cider is generally dreadful, but an exception here is Aspall’s Perronelle’s Blush (Suffolk cider pepped up with crème de mure, 5.4 per cent ABV): a tangy take on kir royale.
Devoted to the provision of cider and pie-centric English food for 27 years, Chimes attracts Pimlico villagers and others to its woody, faintly rustic bar and restaurant. The four draught ciders include the likes of Westons Old Rosie and Biddenden Extra Dry, and there are plenty more apple-based treats by the bottle.
There’s a lively studenty vibe to this big old Fitzrovian pub. Behind the bar is a formidable array of draught cider (around a dozen choices, including keg). Westons is well represented, but the efforts of smaller cider-makers, such as Hogan’s (from Warwickshire) and Thistly Cross (a Scottish rarity) are worth sampling too.
A cherished little drinking hole near Trafalgar Square with its walls crammed with elaborately framed portraits, its narrow bar crammed with thirsty after-work folk, and its chill cabinets crammed with real cider (mostly in air-tight polythene containers). We counted eight varieties, including smooth, still, medium-dry Orchard Pig (6.5 per cent ABV) from Somerset.
Opened in April 2010, the Butchers aims to have three or four ciders constantly on draught, with the selection changing every two or three weeks. It’s a sizeable, bare-floorboards type of hostelry: an unfussy venue in which to quaff Hereford Dry Cider from Upper House Farm, or perhaps a medium farmhouse perry from Dennis Gwatkin.
An antidote to twenty-first-century flummery, this gorgeous pub sports a faithfully recreated, pared-down 1940s interior where pork pies are displayed under bell jars, bluesman Arthur ‘Big Boy’ Crudup throbs in the background, and four real ciders and perries (as well as plentiful ales) flow from the taps. Try a mug of medium-dry Burrow Hill cider with a pickled egg – and keep an eye out for doodlebugs.