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Beer of the Week (w/e 17th October 2021) with Wittenden on the Pub Forum

North Star, Chessington

271 Hook Road
Hook
Postal town: Chessington
KT9 1EQ

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Pub Type

Ember Inns (Mitchells & Butlers)

Reviews (Current Rating Average: of 10) Add Review see review guidelines


Graham Coombs left this review about The North Star

Perhaps because this pub is tight on the road it seems surprisingly large when you get inside, with areas off to either side and behind which were clearly once separate bars and extensions. It has typical Ember Inn decor but is a bit more pubby and less dining than most, with apparently a good local following. There is a patio to the rear. The beer range was rather restricted post-Covid, with just London Pride and the house Black Sheep Twilighter on pump at time of visit but condition was good. Food was quite adequate and service friendly so would be quite happy to return.

On 28th May 2021 - rating: 7
[User has posted 2409 recommendations about 2354 pubs]


Please Note: This review is over a year old.


Moby Duck left this review about The North Star

A large roadside Ember Inns pub with an impressive 10 handpumps on the bar though not all were in use on my visit, beers on were Pride, Tongham TEA, Fullers/Yeastie Boys Double Summer, Titanic Plum Porter, Brakespear Bitter and the house beer Ember Bitter, tight sparklers were in place on all beers.Not really my kind of place.

On 1st August 2017 - rating: 5
[User has posted 1430 recommendations about 1415 pubs]


Please Note: This review is over a year old.


Roger Button left this review about The North Star

I suppose I will always hold a certain degree of affection for the North Star as it was the venue for my embryonic drinking and, having been born and brought up on what was once called the Hooklands estate, it was my first ever local. It has always had a reputation for reasonably civilized drinking even when it was swamped by us teenage youngsters in the 70’s but we were always kept in place by the staff who we fully respected.

Originally built in the 1840’s the North Star would have stood out for miles being situated on brow of a hill overlooking what was at the time commons land and the pub itself was the main meeting place in the area. These days it doesn’t really have any of its historic charm but has been refurbished into a fairly modern style pub that is probably aimed more towards pulling in family diners than appeal to a general drinkers market. At the rear is a decent sized patio garden with several covered benches.

The carpeted interior has been knocked through to a largish single room albeit various extensions and add ons do give it a bit of a rambling feel and there are several separated drinking areas. The décor is quite breezy and light with an almost African/Polynesian theme by way of various statuettes and trinkets. In the centre of the pub, part of an old wall remnant has been cleverly converted into a wine display cabinet. There was a flat screen TV but on the whole it is more of a chatting pub than a sports/games kind of place. In what must be a first on my pub travels, they have a cash machine that doesn’t charge for withdrawals.

The pub is part of the Ember Inns chain and it must be said that both the food and drinks during my recent visit were very good quality, value for money and served up by extremely welcoming staff. Of the 8 hand pumps, there were 5 mainly ubiquitous ales (Youngs Ordinary, Youngs Special, Doom Bar, Adnams and the slightly more redeeming guest pool ale Brains Milkwood). Prices are exteremely reasonable with the most expensive ale (Milkwood) a mere £2.70, a bargain by Surrey standards. The food is from a typical chain pub grub menu but there were sufficient choices to suit my needs and the food was far better than I had expected for the price.

Whilst the pub certainly isn’t how I remembered and I am not a fan of modernized interiors, I would have no qualms about popping in for a meal or a few drinks although the sentimental value of the place probably means that the pub is always going to have more of an appeal to me than most and the pub is probably still the pick of the pubs in the immediate vicinity.

On 14th April 2011 - rating: 6
[User has posted 1238 recommendations about 1232 pubs]


Please Note: This review is over a year old.


Steve C left this review about The North Star

The North Star is a large Ember Inns pub that has the usual hotel lounge feel with orange lighting and group seating. Surprisingly there is no allowance for children under 14 due to lack of facilities, whatever they are. Food is served until 21:00 everyday and the prices seemed to be very cheap for what I witnessed being served. I visited a couple of days before Christmas and the ales available were Reverend James, Adnams, Nutty Black, Greene King IPA, Youngs Special, Christmas Gold Tale and two hand pumps were unused. Peroni was also available alongside a standard draught selection from which I was served a decent pint of Guinness after a long wait. The queue at the bar was bearable as whilst the staff were hacking their way through the hoards of youngsters ordering Red Bulls and vodkas with Smirnoff Ice chasers a young chap let me order before him as he had an order longer than my arm – and they say the yoof of today have no manners! There is a large beer garden out the back with plenty of covered seating and a smoking shelter. I spotted a plasma screen that was off and from what I could see there is no Sky Sports, but a quiz was advertised from 21:00 every Sunday.

I’m not sure why this pub is popular with the younger inhabitants of the area, but it is and I’d rather drink over the road as there is no queue at the bar and the music is better.

On 19th January 2011 - rating: 5
[User has posted 3592 recommendations about 3572 pubs]


Please Note: This review is over a year old.


Malden man left this review about The North Star

A large modern interior, reminiscent of a hotel lounge, with light coloured decor, mirrors in "arty" frames, statuettes of Buddha and South Sea Island figures, and a low volume easy soundtrack. Seating too is of the modern trend, high tables with continuous high bench seats, plus other areas with that carefully designed mixture of jumbled up chair types at the same table. Mostly carpeted but with areas of stone effect floor (not real...like the rest). There are a few TV screens about, Wimbledon showing on the day.
As stated previously, an Ember Inns pub, food therefore important. There is also a rear garden. Beers on my visit were several but unadventurous, Youngs Ordinary and Special, Pride, GK IPA, Adnams Bitter, and "Morlands" Original....GK then. Interestingly, my visit coincided with the Cask Marque inspector checking things out. Not being one to earwig, I left the barman and the CM rep to it, but I can report that the pub passed the inspection well! The beer was in fact well kept, and at £2.50 for Pride, good value.
Not pubby enough for me to be honest, although the beer was ok. A better range would entice me more, but really this doesn't feel like a drinkers pub and would suit the couples out for a bite and Sunday lunchers very well I guess.

On 30th June 2010 - rating: 5
[User has posted 1688 recommendations about 1663 pubs]


Please Note: This review is over a year old.


Rex Rattus left this review about The North Star

I have since been in this pub a number of further occasions, and the food has always been good – by pubco standards (it’s an Ember Inn), and there have always been a couple of interesting ales on, not taken from the ranks of the usual suspects. The following is from Dec 08: I was in there with a very large party for our Christmas lunch. Food was not good – tough steak, undercooked veg, meals arriving with longish intervals between them, etc. I don't blame the staff – they did their best and remained pretty cheerful throughout, but I just don't think they are really geared up to handling large parties. Ales on were Young's Special, Adnam's Bitter and London Pride. I had a couple of pints of special, which was just about OK. A friend had said that the food has always been pretty good in the past, so I shall give it another try after Christmas, and when I am not going mob-handed.
Otherwise this is an unremarkable pub, but comfortable enough for a pint or two, but in my view not worth going out of your way to visit.

On 28th February 2010 - rating: 6
[User has posted 2582 recommendations about 2499 pubs]