East Hampshire

Campaign for Real Ale

Campaign for Real Ale

Beer Scoring

We support the National Beer Scoring Scheme (NBSS), and members can use this system to rate the quality of beer in pubs they visit.

Beer scores are very important in deciding on nominations for the Good Beer Guide - they assist with deciding which of our Branch's pubs go into the Good Beer Guide at our annual GBG meeting in February.
It's something that every member can do - it’s quick, it’s easy and it’s really valuable.

NOTE: You are not rating the pub itself by using this facility (that is done separately via the "Pub Of The Year" (POTY) voting) - you are rating only the beers they serve.

If needed, first familiarise yourself with the 5-point scoring system (see below), then, using your membership number and the password you use to access the national website, log into WhatPub, OR directly into the Beer Scoring website here...
...and away you go!

Remember it is about the keeping and quality (not your personal flavour preferences) - you are scoring the beer served in the pub, not the brewery.

The Beer Scoring system (half scores are possible):

0 No cask ale available
Not stocked or run out.

0.5 Undrinkable
If the beer is undrinkable please politely tell the staff.
Sometimes it might be reaching the end of the barrel, or the staff may have forgotten to pull the line through for the first pint of the day. Give them the benefit of the doubt and the chance to make amends.
In a good pub they should be able to recognise that the beer should not have been served and offer to replace your pint.
If it is replaced, the advice is to not to score the bad ale.

1 Poor
Beer that is anything from barely drinkable, to drinkable with considerable resentment.
Includes beer taken back as being poor and not taken off.
As with a score of 0.5, if a beer is actually this bad it is really worth having a polite chat with the staff.
Again, if it is replaced, the advice is to not to score the poor ale.

2 Average
Competently kept, drinkable pint, but doesn't inspire in any way.
Maybe not worth moving to a different pub though.
Below what is expected for the Good Beer Guide.

3 Good
Good beer in good form.
You may cancel plans to move to the next pub - you want to stay for another pint and may seek out the beer again.

4 Very Good
Excellent beer in excellent condition.
Exceeds expectations.

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

- In all of this it is always worth talking to the staff about beer quality, especially if the landlord or manager is around - without direct feedback how can they improve?
- Complement them on a great pint, certainly – but if you think things aren’t up to scratch it's worth talking about that too.
- Sometimes bar staff will take it badly and be confrontational about your opinions - grin and bear it.
- Of course, if the landlord or landlady looks like he or she is in a bad mood, it might not be a good idea to start speaking with them when their beer isn’t good enough! Use your judgement and offer feedback when you feel it may help.
- Be prepared to accept that you may be wrong and learn from it - some unfined and specialty beers may be intentionally cloudy, for example.
- Always be polite!
- Don't give a pint 5 just because it’s one you happen to like it - think - in your experience is this beer in front of me a really good example of this beer, or a pretty poor one?
- And don't give a pint 1 because it’s a stout and you happen to hate stouts!
- If in doubt, don’t score, or maybe ask a friend what they think - most people can tell the difference between a beer that just happens to have a flavour that "isn't for them" and a beer with actual defects.