George Orwell, a man fond of a pint, used to write about his fantasy pub, The Moon Under Water, in his Evening Standard columns - 'two minutes from the bus stop where drunks and rowdies never seemed to find their way ...where there was no music and motherly barmaids called you "dear" while pouring pints in red china mugs' ...That was the 1940s; today our high streets have been taken over by cheapened identi-kit lounge bars (the Wetherspoon's chain has 14 Moon Under the Waters), and the pub, as a cornerstone of British life, has never been more under threat. What with smoking bans and the cost of a round being roughly equivalent to the price of a multipack from a supermarket, there are something like 57 pubs closing every week. In searching for the perfect pub Paul Moody and Robin Turner head off in pursuit of pubs that fizz with independence and a true frontier spirit, along the way raising a glass to 2000 years of British brewing history. It's partly an account of their road trip around Britain researching the Rough Pub Guide; and partly a deeper investigation into why British pub culture is the toast of the world.
As featured on the Today programme and in the Guardian Time Out Book Of The Week The Independent's Top 50 Ideal Presents For Men "A rattling good yarn," Scotland on Sunday "Entertaining and illuminating," Shortlist "A wry, witty book that's a lot less 'real ale' than you might think," Sport "Part road trip, part pub guide and part lament ...the enthusiasm for fine beers and charming independent pubs makes reading it very thirsty work," Financial Times "A pub crawl-meets-liquid social history ...this book can only help," Reuters "A very entertaining journey with plenty of input from the kinds of characters I'd love to spend a pint or three with. And I highly recommend you buy a copy. It's the ideal book to make you think as you drink in that pub that you love on a wet afternoon in winter," Reluctant Scooper "Written with a personality and intelligence that gives the book the feel of an informed, passionate chat down the pub," The Quietus