South Island

Readers of my other blog will be aware that I play with toy trains and have more than a passing interest in a certain location on New Zealand’s South Island.


This interest was not on my mind when I went to the Royal Oak in New Mills last night – Until I spotted that they had a beer I’d not tried before on the end pump. I am glad I have my other hobby because I would probably have stuck to the pub’s usual light bitter, Dizzy Blonde, if I had not made the NZ connection.

I really must say that South Island is one of the finest blonde beers I have tasted this year, there seems to have been a truly good selection of pale ales using unusual hops recently and this one is well up there with the best of them. The first pint of it actually tasted a bit sweet due to my having had a Dizzy previously, but the flavour came through a lot better with the next one. Unfortunately it’s a seasonal “guest” beer and, from what the landlord told me, it’s coming to the end of its production run.

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That’s a great pity because over the last couple of years my opinion of this brewery has risen greatly, primarily influenced by Dizzy and the short run pale/blonde beers.


Keep it up Robinsons, you are doing an excellent job!

New Mills has changed a lot since I used to work at Central station in the late 1970s and early 80s. On leaving the pub I was greeted with this trio, who I would have associated more with Marple or Romiley in those days…

royaloak 002Luckily they were confined behind glass!

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About Bob Hughes

Ex railwayman, life long railway modeller, lover of real ale and spicy food.
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