The Crown and Two Chairmen, Soho, June 2018

Good to be back at my new favourite Soho pub after another evening at the Soho Theatre. A typically manic performance from Robin Ince (trying to squeeze a good few hours of material into an hour slot).

On my last visit, they were in the middle of a Thornbridge craft beer residency, a kind of mini-tap takeover. The next instalment of craft beer residency just happens to be up and running now. It’s an American theme this time, with Sierra Nevada and Anchor both represented here tonight.

First up was West Coast Hazy IPA from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. Yes, that’s a west cost NEIPA, very easy drinking and refreshing, and only 4.2% too.

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Alongside this was Blood Orange Blonde from Anchor Brewing Company, a rather non-descript blonde ale with not a lot of blood orange in evidence.

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Dinner was a simple pub classic, fish’n’chips. Nothing to get excited about, just plain fodder. Some pub fish’n’chips are fantastic, others are just ok. This was just ok.

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Still a great Soho pub, just avoid it at the weekends as it gets absolutely rammed! It was busier than usual because they were showing the World Cup, but the game was almost over and it soon emptied out afterwards.

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Soho Theatre, London, June 2018

I’ve said this before, but it bears repeating. Beer at comedy venues is generally pretty awful. The Soho Theatre try and break the mould by getting some reasonable cask ales in, but they need a crash course in how to look after cask ale, since it almost always suffers from mistreatment. And the way that the bar staff treat the beer engine, you’d think it was a piece of gym equipment with 50kg on the end of it. And they certainly don’t embrace the sparkler.

If you have a keg beer (and they have one or two reasonable ones) then you’re fine, but they seem to wreck every cask ale that they touch. This T Drop by Adnams might have been nice, with subtle notes of jasmine, hibiscus and Earl Grey tea.

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However, there was none of that here, and it just tasted a bit beery. At least it was cool on another hot night in the big smoke.

One person who was not cool, was tonight’s entertainment, Robin Ince, trying to fit about 2 and 1/2 hours of material into about an hour, whilst breaking in a new cardigan. Manic doesn’t even begin to describe it, but brilliant does. Try and see the full length version, where Robin’s joy of performing in London doesn’t overtake his ability to perform at least some of the routines. A deranged delight.