Wymondham – Green Dragon

This is the first time that I’ve been to the Green Dragon in Wymondham, a Good Beer Guide listed pub which is also one of the oldest in the county. The owners say that it has been here since 1371, no doubt used by those involved in the building and operation of Wymondham Abbey.

The pub itself isn’t open for inside customers at the moment, it’s all a bit difficult to manage any safe form of distancing. What is open is the beer garden and there’s a staff member at the entrance guiding customers to their tables, which usually have to be pre-booked. The pub has also made clear what to do and where to wait, with track and trace being in operation here.

The beer selection of the day, with no darker beers available. The staff member said that they had been getting several requests for a dark beer, but I don’t know whether it was a conscious decision not to get one, whether there’s one waiting to go on or whether they can’t get hold of anything exciting. I didn’t like to ask and sound like a difficult customer…..

The beer garden, all nicely laid out, clean and organised. This is apparently usually where music performances, beer festivals and the like take place. It’d be interesting to see the interior when they’re open, the photos I’ve seen certainly make it look quirky and historically interesting. The listed building record notes that the current building is likely from the mid-fifteenth century and was probably constructed as a shop and private residence.

The Lavender Honey from Wolf Brewery, well-kept, at the appropriate temperature and with a clean taste with a strong note of lavender and honey. I’m not sure that I would have wanted two, it was a bit insipid for my liking, but the flavours were interesting.

The pub was having some problems with its logistics, we waited 24 minutes for a round and when it arrived they’d brought out one too many beers. However, this was fine, they gave it away free, so I was enormously forgiving. Although it meant I had another pint of Lavender Honey. The other pint was Trawler Boy from Green Jack Brewery, I didn’t get much from it at all, although it was smooth and well-kept.

Service was efficient throughout, with the forgivable error of one round probably getting lost in their ordering system. Staff at the pub were engaging, friendly and polite, always welcoming. I understand a couple of pubs in the town are still closed at the moment due to social distancing not being possible, but I suspect this pub would have been busy anyway. There’s a community feel evident to it and someone new to the area could likely come to this pub and feel welcome. Staff knowledge on the drinks selection was a bit weak, but, being fair again, these are challenging times and the set-up is inevitably different.

I didn’t order food, but others at the table did, and it was of a decent quality and not unreasonably priced. I thought the packaging look a little random at first, but when it was opened up it was well presented and the hot elements kept away from the cold. It certainly saves on the challenges of washing-up at the moment.

All told, a welcoming pub, although for my own tastes, I would have preferred a wider selection of beers as it felt rather unbalanced. Unfortunately, the pub doesn’t respond to their negative TripAdvisor reviews, I like reading them to get a measure of how they react to problems.

And a photo of the pub from the 1950s…..