Camra's Pub of the Year will be announced at the end of the week. The four finalists are :
Tom Cobley Tavern, Spreyton, Devon
Royal Oak, Rusper, West Sussex
Kelham Island Tavern, Sheffield
The final judges have made their decision and the presentation will be widely publicised on Friday.
I played my part in the judging process by chairing the London regional panel and also judging the super regional pubs for the South East. I was recently hauled up for giving a misleading comment on this blog that I had knocked off marks because a certain pub did not do food. Although I had made it clear that food is not part of the judging, and that this was absolutely untrue, I removed the wording that caused offence.
The four pubs in the final have over 50 hand pumps between them which in itself has also received some comment. Being fairly close to the process, I trust the judges and the judging process completely. If anything, it is the judging criteria that people should study. However, let's remember we are the Campaign for Real Ale and the book is called The Good Beer Guide. It is little surprise that pubs with a well kept, wider cask ale offering float to the top in our competitions.
I will bring you the winner at midnight on Thursday.