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Beer of the Week (w/e 5th December 2021) with Bucking Fastard on the Pub Forum

Cowes Ale House, Cowes

Pub added by E TA
5 Shooters Hill
PO31 7BE

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Reviews (Current Rating Average: 8 of 10) Add Review see review guidelines

Please Note: This review is over a year old.

Graham Coombs left this review about Cowes Ale House

A small wood-panelled shop conversion with a nicely-historic feel, although it clearly isn't. There is one room with a small bar at the back and a small decked area out the back. Ales on mid-Covid were restricted to Island Nipper and Goddard's Wight Squirrel, with something from Portobello due. Overall fair enough, but not great on this occasion.

On 22nd September 2020 - rating: 7
[User has posted 2465 recommendations about 2410 pubs]

Please Note: This review is over a year old.

Blue Scrumpy left this review about Cowes Ale House

Having been to the Newport Ale House almost 2 years ago and having found it packed, I wasn't quite sure what to expect from a visit to the Cowes Ale House.

In fact, it was much quieter than I was expecting, with just 3 other locals indoors. Apparently there were more people in an outdoor area at the rear.

Set on a pedestrianized street, it's a small and friendly place offering decent service.

The 3 ales were all from island breweries - Island Wight Night, Yates's Islander & Goddard's Inspiration. I was hoping for a darker beer, but there were none on.

Nevertheless, this was the only place on the island we found offering real cider on this visit. Choices were Weston's Rosie's Pig, Norcott's Mango & Lime Cider, Lilley's Pear & Raspberry Cider & Crazy Goat & Thistly Cross Original.

This is clearly a place for conversation and was easily my favourite pub on this visit to the Isle of Wight.

On 13th August 2020 - rating: 7
[User has posted 870 recommendations about 870 pubs]

Please Note: This review is over a year old.

Pub SignMan left this review about Cowes Ale House

Just a short walk from Cowes ferry terminal, following the town’s characterful High Street, this is a welcoming micro pub and sister venue to the Newport Ale House. Like most micro pubs, this is a small, single room shop conversion with limited seating options. You enter through a small porch, into a bare boarded room with high backed pews down the right-hand wall and low stools and tub chairs down the left, all serving tables made from up-turned barrels. One wall is decorated with nautical themed wallpaper and has some nice paintings and some models of steam locomotives and other such forms of transport on high shelves. To the other side, the wall is liberally covered with a collection of old black and white photos showing the town in years gone by. The servery is to the rear of the room, set at a 45-degree angle to allow you to pass by for the toilets which are further along. The bar has a plain tongue and groove counter and simple shelving bar back with four of five casks racked up to one side. On our visit, there was a bloke set up under the large frosted front window which has the pub’s name picked out on it, playing the guitar and harmonica to an appreciative bunch of locals.
There were just the two ales available on my visit – Goddard’s Duck’s Folly and 1895 – with two or three other barrels set up but not quite ready yet. After a bit of a wait for the barman to show himself, I tried the Duck’s Folly, which was a decent enough drop, whilst my other half ordered a mug of tea and endured some good-natured ribbing from the locals for her troubles.
We spent much longer in here than the quick visit we’d planned, such was the warm, welcoming vibe we got. The good beer, cheery locals and decent live entertainment all worked well and whilst this place lacks the character of its sister pub in Newport, its still a good micro pub and worth checking out when you’re in Cowes.

On 6th January 2020 - rating: 8
[User has posted 2630 recommendations about 2630 pubs]

Please Note: This review is over a year old.

Just a quick pint, then I'm off left this review about Cowes Ale House

Attractive shop-conversion micro-pub, with its compact bar furnished and decorated exactly as you would expect. Rather dark inside, but there is also a tiny decking patio at the back. No handpumps on the narrow counter, with the real ales being dispensed by gravity from a stillage behind, with Goddard's Starboard!, Hanlon's Stormsay and Southwark Full Sail available when we stopped by. Well worth seeking out.

On 4th June 2017 - rating: 8
[User has posted 6620 recommendations about 6620 pubs]

Please Note: This review is over a year old.

Quinno _ left this review about Cowes Ale House

A shop conversion into a micropub, this is the second on the island run by the same folks (the other is in Newport). It’s done pretty well, a long narrow room which is nicely decorated (nautical wallpaper, high-back pew seating, wooden barrels for tables, breweriana) and there’s a rear courtyard. Two ales on (the other was off as it wasn’t clearing “and I’m not serving my customers that!” from behind the bar). The remaining two (Island Vectis and Butcombe Bitter) came off stillage which always makes me nervous but these were in great shape. Also enjoyed some excellent pork cracking from the local butchers. The guy behind the bar was friendly and chatty and another customer came in who proceeded to join in the chat. Really good place, flummoxed as to how this isn’t in the Good Beer Guide (but then again, a number of the local CAMRA branch choices seemed odd to me). One of the best pubs on the Isle for my money and I will definitely pop in again next time.

On 10th July 2016 - rating: 9
[User has posted 4200 recommendations about 4187 pubs]

Please Note: This review is over a year old.

E TA left this review about Cowes Ale House

A Victorian shop converted into a micro pub about two years ago. There is a paved yard with tables and chairs at the back, not pretty but functional, as is the interior décor which hides the original architecture. The wood-floored bar is comfortable for a micro, with a selection of seating styles ranging from church pews to comfy chairs, complemented by a set of wooden barrels converted to tables and chairs. There is free WiFi, but that is the only electronic luxury – the awful row from the jukebox was hardly luxurious. The shop windows had been replaced with etched glass showing the pub’s logo. The welcome from the landlord and the bar-flies was warm and genuine, although there were a couple of autochthonous idiots in the garden who felt threatened by the presence of unfamiliar humans. Three ales on gravity – Courage Directors, Rev James and island Brewery’s Yachtsman. All were in first class condition and most appreciated. I think this is a new favourite in Cowes and will become a regular venue.

On 30th June 2015 - rating: 8
[User has posted 2736 recommendations about 2704 pubs]