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38 Reviews
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21 of 21 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Cheshire stalwarts
We have every edition of this guide published over the last 20 years, and in that time have also reported on hundreds of pubs. We have hardly ever been let down by any pub listed as a main entry, and in the very small number of cases where we have, this has usually been due to a change of management. Our reason for not giving it a full five stars it that we agree that...
Published 7 months ago by Brian Marsden

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16 of 19 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Not like it used to be
I have bought the Good Pub Guide for decades - but may not buy the 2014 edition, and not because Messrs Aird and Stapley think thousands of pubs deserve to close. I have to confess a vested interest here, as I run my own pub review website and use the GPG for reference (not plagiarism I can assure you). Over the past few years I have referred to it less often because the...
Published 7 months ago by Paulk


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21 of 21 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Cheshire stalwarts, 6 Sep 2013
This review is from: The Good Pub Guide 2014 (Paperback)
We have every edition of this guide published over the last 20 years, and in that time have also reported on hundreds of pubs. We have hardly ever been let down by any pub listed as a main entry, and in the very small number of cases where we have, this has usually been due to a change of management. Our reason for not giving it a full five stars it that we agree that it's unfortunate that licensees now have to pay for a full entry inclusion (we are aware of two excellent pubs in Suffolk that have refused to pay this fee), but the publication has to make a profit, and we'd rather see this than no guide at all. Pubs can't get listed as main entries just by paying a fee, as some people seem to be implying; they have to satisfy the guide editors that they are worth including as main entries first.

Comparisons with the CAMRA Good Beer Guide are a little spurious, as this guide is funded in part by member subscriptions (we are members), and the only criterion for inclusion is beer quality. The GPG takes various factors into consideration, and there are many basic pubs that have no or minimal food in there as main entries, such as the fabulous Yew Tree in Cauldon, Staffordshire.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A first step to finding a decent pub, 19 Sep 2013
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This review is from: The Good Pub Guide 2014 (Paperback)
This has been one of my references for finding a good pub for many years. When you are travelling to a part of the country you don't know well, or have never previously visited, it can be invaluable. Now running at 1,100 pages it is formidable amount of information at a fair and reasonable price.

It is hard to go along with suggestions that the CAMRA Good Beer Guide might do a better job - it fulfils a different purpose. While I want to find a decent range of real ales, my other half wants to know that there are some good wines on offer too. And as for 'paid entries' , for as long as they are counterbalanced with independent opinions as well, what's your problem? Or would you rather pay the considerably greater full cost of researching and preparing a guide like the GPG? Of course you wouldn't.

If the annual guide has a shortcoming it is that things can and do change - from opening times, to menus and chefs. So, if you can, check the pub website too - and enjoy your trip to a great British institution, whether to a 'main entry' or to a pub included as 'worth a visit'. You will find many excellent pubs in those later sections that have been recommended for years and for all of the right reasons for eaters and drinkers alike.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Certainly not for the pocket, 18 Sep 2013
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This review is from: The Good Pub Guide 2014 (Paperback)
This gets thicker and thicker as the number of good pubs increases. It's even getting too big for the glove compartment. What makes a good pub? Opinions will vary but most of the recommendations seem sound, in one way or another. For some it's all about the ale and the craic, for others the food and for others the family. There are some in here that I've tried and wouldn't go back to for a variety of reasons. There are others that ive tried and will go back to. However, the descriptions are generally honest and allow you to make up your mind whether it's your sort of pub or not. A must have for the thinking, drinking British traveller. The App is not too easy to use (in my opinion) so buy the book.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Book, 25 Oct 2013
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This review is from: The Good Pub Guide 2014 (Paperback)
A super little book - we have already thumbed through it alot since buying it last week.
We should never be stuck on where to go now.
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13 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent as usual, 3 Sep 2013
This review is from: The Good Pub Guide 2014 (Paperback)
Please ignore those who chose to slate this guide.
This must be the sixth copy I have bought over the years.
I have never had a bad drink or meal in any current listing in the guide.
Really takes the guesswork out of eating or drinking in a new area.

Nice to see some old regulars back in the guide.

I thought the editorial was spot on and just echoed the thoughts of my local landlord.

The days of a pub surviving on just the triumvirate of beer, tobacco and dogs are long gone. If that has been replaced by good food, good service and good drinks then lets hear it for progress.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The Good Pub Guide 2014, 23 Oct 2013
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This review is from: The Good Pub Guide 2014 (Paperback)
This pub guide seems very good but we've not yet had a chance to use it much as we haven't travelled in the UK since buying it. The local pub it recommends is already our favourite eating place so I'm sure it will be good. But pubs are closing down and changing ownership so frequently these guides can soon be out of date, so its always best to check the info is up to date.....
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16 of 19 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Not like it used to be, 3 Sep 2013
This review is from: The Good Pub Guide 2014 (Paperback)
I have bought the Good Pub Guide for decades - but may not buy the 2014 edition, and not because Messrs Aird and Stapley think thousands of pubs deserve to close. I have to confess a vested interest here, as I run my own pub review website and use the GPG for reference (not plagiarism I can assure you). Over the past few years I have referred to it less often because the entries tend to be food pubs rather than just good pubs. I know why they charge for the main entries now, but there's a balance between making the publication pay, which it must do to survive, and undermining its 'trusted guide' integrity. Like a pub, if you lose sight of your customers' needs, you're doomed to fail.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A GREAT BIRTHDAY PRESENT, 23 Oct 2013
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This review is from: The Good Pub Guide 2014 (Paperback)
it is a birthday present for my son he loves it, now he just has to look through the book
instead of spending money on his phone
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great!, 10 Oct 2013
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This review is from: The Good Pub Guide 2014 (Paperback)
My new guide lives in the car and is invaluable! I haven't hd a guide for years now, but certainly wouldn't be without it now.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great help if in a unknown area, 1 Oct 2013
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This review is from: The Good Pub Guide 2014 (Paperback)
The reviews of the pubs are very helpfull,also the food reviews are a must as most of us use pubs for mostly meals nowadays as well as a social with friends.I hope not to many continue to become more like restaurants
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The Good Pub Guide 2014
The Good Pub Guide 2014 by Fiona Stapley (Paperback - 29 Aug 2013)
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