Swindon and North Wiltshire

Campaign for Real Ale

Campaign for Real Ale

Good Beer Guide

Good Beer Guide Selection Process

The Branch holds meetings each month and, during the three months prior to submission of Good Beer Guide (GBG) nominations to the regional director, the GBG Co-ordinator will provide a list of pubs within the branch area that have been nominated for the next GBG. This list will include all current GBG listed pubs, unless there is a reason they cannot be considered. An example would be closure.

The primary factor in determining whether a pub should be included in the guide is a record of serving consistently good real ale. This can be evidenced by the average NBSS beer score, provided that the number of scores provided over the previous 12 months is sufficient; a small number of good scores is weak evidence that a pub has consistently served good beer.

Other factors include:

  • The pub, and its management's reputation; we would normally expect a pub to be selling consistently good ale for at least six months for it to be included in the GBG
  • The importance of real ale to the pub's business model; where it is a sideline it would be easier to remove
  • The availability of real ale; for a pub to be included in the Guide we would normally expect it to serve real ale whenever it is open
  • The number of ales offered. While quality is more important than quantity, a pub with only one real ale is more likely to run out leaving drinkers with no choice
  • The geographical spread of pubs within the region; better to have an even coverage
  • The types of pub; better to have a mix of dry/wet led pubs
  • The operational model; better to have a mix of chain/independent pubs

The merits of each pub are discussed during the branch meetings. A draft a long list of pubs likely to be included, and under consideration, is produced and pub visits are arranged where possible to gain the most up-to-date information on the features of the pubs and the quality of their beer.

Following the pub visits a short list of suitable pubs is produced. Branch members then vote for their selection from the short list and the pubs (or clubs) with the most votes are nominated for inclusion in the next GBG.

The list of nominated pubs may have to be trimmed down to meet allocation limits imposed by the GBG editorial team.

The top three pubs that are excluded due to the allocation limit are placed on a reserve list. They will be promoted to the GBG if a pub has to be removed from the submitted list between the submission date and the time of the final proof (e.g. because it closes).

How to nominate pubs for potential inclusion in the GBG

NB:- this link is open to local branch members only.

Good Beer Guide Suggestions