Friday, April 29, 2011

No. 40 The Cross Keys

Visited on 28/4/11. Back in the day, the Cross Keys was the only Boddington's pub in Chester. That was when Boddington's was an independent brewery making its famous and distinctive pale Mancunian ale - as opposed to the tastless mass-marketed InBev keg Boddington's of today (sales of which have plummeted to a quarter of what they were ten years ago and are still heading south by the way). It's interesting then that the Cross Keys appears to be maintaining the tradition of selling distinctive ale. It's recently been bought by Joules of Market Drayton in Shropshire - a brewery which like many others closed its doors for the final time in the 1970s. However it's now reborn. A new brewery has been built, an exciting marketing plan has been put in place and if the ale on offer at the Cross Keys is anything to go by, the new Joules is destined to be a big success. Both the 'pale ale' and 'slumbering monk' sampled here were absolutely excellent. Great pub, great beer.

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