Nice spot. Solid range of traditional styles spread across about eight casks, plus some more progressive items on keg and in bottle. Good value. Friendly staff. Low-key ambiance. The walls and ceiling are covered in pump clips. There is unobtrusive music. Given the convenient central location, I would say this is definitely a place you should check out if you are passing through Reading.
Jun ’15 Rating 82. Continues to improve, great beer choices, excellent place to go. Oct ’07 rating 72. Great pub in the centre of town, a little gothic in attitude with a diet of rock music played. The beers are varied and generally kept very well. Lots of small alcoves to sit in if it isn’t too busy, Friday night was chaotic however. There is a small area out the front for drinking too, watching the shoppers going about their business..
The bar area is tight, small and you have to reach across barfly’s to get your beer.
Overall a great boozer.
Fin (941) Merton, Oxfordshire, England, England | June 4, 2015
We visited the Alehouse on Tuesday 26th.May 2015. I remember coming here many, many years ago when it was the Hobgoblin, I’d been here before on my own and I think with Loz, however Loz can’t remember whether she’d been here or not. The pub sits in one of the main shopping drags in town with a Prezzo and the Oracle almost opposite, I think that the latter is a shopping centre. It’s a bit of a labyrinth inside with a number of small woodens cubicle/train carriage types rooms that lead off the back of the main bar situated at the front. The main bar is quite small and festooned with beer pumpclips for decoration, they are everywhere. You enter from LH side at front and the bar is unmissable off to the right. There are a few small tables but it is a small place so not many. Beer choice was good with a decent selection of cask and keg beers l, these are listed on a board above and left of the bar. There is some seating outside (as I recall). Its decor is quite spartan mostly wood and pumpclips. Only one member of staff noticed during our visit but he was friendly as were the clientele. Quite like this place, it hasn’t changed a great deal but just about enough to try and keep up with the changing beer trends.
A long time favourite when in Reading, this small pub with snugs to the rear has a great range of ales on tap along with real ciders. Its amazing that it survives in the middle of the pedestrianised area oppposite the Oracle as must be a prime retail potential but it is well patronised so hopefully it has a long future.
What a great pub - just my sort of place! It’s very central, just on the edge of the pedestrian area, and has tables and seats spilling out into the street. The main bar area is quite small with only a few tables (including one on a little raised platform, where I sat so I could survey the scene) but there are also tiny wooden cubicles in a back room where I imagined naughty children might be sent. They had 15 hand pumps - all interesting and including three from West Berkshire Brewery - plus some ciders and 3 keg taps, with no mass market junk anywhere to be seen. As I hope I’ve conveyed, I liked it a lot.
(Visited 10 June 2014).
A legendary pub bang in the centre of town. About the only pub that does not have bouncers outside on a Friday or Saturday! Probably because they serve quality beer not mass-advertised rubbish which seems to attract the trouble makers! The bar is small and there are a few tables in various nooks and crannies. A must visit if in Reading. Years ago my friend got told to get out when his mobile phone went off!
Small cosy citypub, in the citycenter. Can at times be a bit crowded, not having that many seats... A bit worn out place, but in a nice way. Great range of beers, most times in good condition. Friendly staff, even though they sometimes seems to think, that we take to long time to decide, which beer to have :-)
For sure worth a revisit...
Every shopping street should have a place like this, yet very few have. Slap bang in the main pedestrian shopping area of Reading, an ideal place to pop into for a swift drink. Small, not to say a bit cramped. But has plenty of character. You’ll always find three or four West Berkshire beers here, complemented by another three or four guests, which are rarely common beers. So there’s usually a scoop or two. Recently had to change its name from the Hodgoblin due to extortionate (financial) demands from Marstons, who own the brand name. Boo hiss to Marstons. Actually, the new name describes it pretty accurately. An archetypal, no frills, town centre ale house. Some people have found the landlord a bit grumpy but I’ve always found the staff fine, if sometimes a little world weary. An essential stop on any Reading visit.