We like to get out and about looking for new pubs (although the evil of work has prevented this a bit recently).
Sometimes, we just chance our luck and hope that we’ll stumble on somewhere good. We’ve got quite good at peering through pub windows to see what’s on offer and have become pretty adept at turning on our heels and walking out of pubs that turn out to be rotten once we”re inside.
More often, though, we do a bit of research beforehand, using various resources.
We do have a copy of the Good Beer Guide (2007 edition) which we refer to, but as we’ve mentioned before, its focus on consistently good cask ale, rather than on interesting beers across the board, sometimes leaves us uninspired. Also, it could be better at clearly flagging pubs in a given area which stock locally brewed beers.
We like Beer in the Evening, but a number of our regular haunts don’t score above average (usually because a few Internet trolls have dragged the rating down). But the comments often give us a good idea of whether we’d enjoy the pub or not, regardless of overall rating.
These days, though, we’re most likely to survey our favourite blogs before visiting a new area. If several bloggers like the same pub, it’s probably worth a look. Over time, we’ve also developed a sense of which bloggers like the same kinds of pubs we do, so we rate their opinions more highly. It’s the next best thing to a personal recommendation.