South Cheshire

Campaign for Real Ale

Good Beer Guide Selection


Like many CAMRA branches we use the data compiled from beer scores submitted by CAMRA members over the course of the year to help choose which pubs go in the Good Beer Guide, so every branch member has the opportunity to contribute to GBG selection.

We have adopted CAMRA's National Beer Scoring System (NBSS) which recommends scoring the condition of your pint, how well it has been looked after at the pub, based on the following guidelines on a scale of 1 to 5, including 1/2 marks if you can't decide between 2 of the gradings (e.g. 3.5):

0 Undrinkable No cask ale available or so poor you have to take it back or can't finish it.

1 Poor Beer that is anything from barely drinkable to drinkable with considerable resentment.

2 Average Competently kept, drinkable pint but doesn't inspire in any way, not worth moving to another pub but you drink the beer without really noticing.

3 Good Good beer in good form. You may cancel plans to move to another pub. You may want to stay for another pint.

4 Very Good Excellent beer in excellent condition.

5 Perfect Probably the best you are ever likely to find it. A seasoned drinker will award this score very rarely.

Whilst the NBSS system attempts to introduce objectivity, beer-scoring remains very personal and a beer which might be a '4' to one person could be a '3' to someone else so it's important that we receive as many scores as possible in order to even things out.

We also apply minimum criteria per pub for both the number of scores and the number of people submitting scores. To be considered for the Good Beer Guide a pub must achieve these minimum criteria and rank towards the top of the 'league table' for average scores.

The average scores per pub are collated and reviewed quarterly at branch meetings then in January the Branch GBG Coordinator hosts the first GBG meeting which will review each pub which has met the selection criteria for entry into the GBG, resulting in a recommended 'short list of pubs' for next year's guide.

Members will then have a chance to (re)visit pubs on the short list before a second and final meeting in February where a final 'recommended list' will be submitted for publication in the next years GBG.

CAMRA members can take part in the process by submitting scores on line via WhatPub WhatPub where you can enter your score for any pub you have visited across the UK. You will need your membership number (user name) and postcode (password - capitals, no spaces e.g. CW11AA) to log on, together with the pub name and location, the date of your visit, (optionally the name of the beer,) and your score.

We always need more scores from our members and encourage you all to score your beer whenever you visit a pub and let us have those scores. This is even more important for our rural pubs. The area we cover is huge and there will always be deserving pubs that we struggle to get to or overlook, and whose regulars do not submit scores. If you have ever thought why a pub is in the guide, or indeed why it isn't, then by scoring it you can make a difference. If you think your 'local' should be in the guide then let us have your scores and make us more aware of it!