Hemel Hempstead pub celebrates award win
The landlords of Monks Inn are celebrating after the pub won the Mid Chilterns CAMRA Pub Of The Year award
Clint Whitaker, and his business partner Matthew Toms, have been the landlords of the pub, in The Square, for just over a year and were delighted to be named pub of the year.
CAMRA was set up in the early 70’s to protect and promote cask beer and British pubs, each year, the branch committee recognises the best pubs in the area, those that excel in hospitality and the upkeep of cask ale.
Clint said: "I'm ecstatic to have won the award, it is great for the pub and we have not been here that long.
"It is a very prestigious award for real ale pubs, the award means a lot to us, these awards are normally for bigger, more established pubs. We are very honoured to have won.
"We do not deal with large brewers, we deal with local breweries, like Tring Brewery, smaller suppliers tend to have a higher ilk than the more established brewers.
"The beer we offer changes all the time, we change the selection every week
"We have 10 beers, five via gravity and five from handles, we also have craft beers and lagers - we like to give our customers variety.
"Our customers are mainly drawn to us for our real ales and real ciders, but we also have a variety of other drinks including a range of gins and lagers. We have comedy nights and weekly acoustic nights which are really successful."
The branch committee uses voting data from CAMRA members to help with the decision for each category.
Jared Ward-Brickett, chairman of Mid Chilterns CAMRA, said: "I am very excited to announce Monks Inn as our champion Pub of the Year; Clint and his team go above and beyond in their dedication to beer and hospitality.
"Drinkers may not realise that cask beer is a fresh product (hence the phrase ‘real ale’), and even once it has left the brewery, requires constant attention across a myriad of areas to serve a perfect pint.
"The awards are a great time of year for the branch, we embrace them as an opportunity to showcase local pubs, with publicans that are as much impassioned about beer as we are.
"CAMRA is a consumer organisation, therefore all committee work is carried out on a voluntary basis, a passion project for all involved – we are glad that the awards can hold some gravitas in the local community."