CAMRA Dover, Deal and Sandwich branch
Saturday 5th February 2011
It's early February, so time to take the train to Dover for the Winter Ale Festival. This year I went on the Saturday rather than Friday, although I wish I hadn't, as most of the beers I wanted to sample had been guzzled to extinction on the Friday.
However there was still enough to satisfy. No beer is less than 5.0% abv and yet all of them are just £2.50 a pint, £1.25 a half! I don't know how they do it.
This festival is also held in a stunning location, the Maison Dieu, a onetime Town Hall in Dover, five minutes from the Priory railway station. Truly a hall, with wooden roof supports and stained glass windows. Massive portraits of former town luminaries adorn the walls. This area is where the beer is served, the next room contains the seating area and a stage. This looks as if it dates from the late Victorian era.
Again the CAMRA Dover, Deal and Sandwich branch excelled themselves with this festival and it is totally recommended, although go on Friday if you want to select from the full range of beers. The only (slight) drawback was the two old blokes "singing" and playing the piano, yet most of the customers liked them, so who am I to criticise?
For further details on future festivals please consult the website: www.camra-dds.org.uk