Cambridge – Elm Tree

I’m not sure that I’ve been to this pub in Cambridge before, but it’s been one of the ever-present locations in the Good Beer Guide over the last few decades. The pub is well-reviewed on-line, it’s a traditional real ale venue which has a loyal following of locals.

There was a friendly welcome and the pub is small and quite cosy, with the staff being engaging and helpful. There was once a bar billiards table here, but that has long since gone, which must have been a relief for Nathan as he’d have been annoyed to lose in Cambridge.

There’s a strong emphasis on Belgian beers and CAMRA note that the pub’s landlord has written a book about the subject. I’ve got little knowledge of Belgian beers, although maybe I’ll work on that in the future. In addition to the 100+ Belgian beers, there’s also a notable cider selection as well.

The Party Party from Brewpoint Brewery, which seems to be the remnants of the Charles Wells set-up that has just constructed a new brewery site at Bedford. It’s a middle of the road real ale, with the crisps (which are vegan despite the flavour of Roast Rib of Beef) complementing it perfectly. This pub doesn’t serve food, but customers are allowed to bring sandwiches and the like in if they want.

This pub didn’t have the craft beer options of some of the others that we visited, but the service was welcoming, the environment was comfortable and the beer was well-kept. I can see why this has persisted in the Good Beer Guide for so long and there were numerous real ales to choose from. This was also evidently one of those pubs that I felt someone could come in on their own and be made to feel welcome, always a key requirement of a pub in my view.