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The Forest Tavern (Portobello Pub Company)

Beer (sort)Average Score (sort)No. Samples (sort)
Hammerton - N1Excellent1
London Fields - Hackney HopsterExcellent1
Anarchy - Smoke BombExcellent1
East London (ELB) - NightwatchmanExcellent1
East London (ELB) - Orchid Vanilla MildExcellent1
Redemption - Fellowship PorterExcellent1
Adnams - The Herbalist (collaboration with Magic Rock)Excellent1
Revolutions - Into Your ArmsExcellent1
Hackney - Best BitterGood1
King Beer (formerly W.J. King) - Green BulletGood1
Stewart - ZymicGood1
Stod Fold - GoldGood1
Mad Squirrel (formerly Red Squirrel) - Mister Squirrel (superseded by 4% version)Good1
Rooster's - BuckeyeGood1
360° - Sussex #42Acceptable1
RedWillow - FecklessNot Tried0
Volden - Session (or Session Ale)Not Tried0
Thornbridge / Thornbridge Hall - JaipurNot Tried0
Hammerton - Pentonville Oyster StoutNot Tried0
Derventio - Et Tu BrutusNot Tried0
Volden - Pale (formerly Pale Ale)Not Tried0
Hardknott - CoolfusionNot Tried0
Siren Craft - Yu LuNot Tried0
London Fields - Shoreditch Triangle IPANot Tried0
Five Points - Hook Island RedNot Tried0
Ilkley - American SmoothNot Tried0
Brains - SANot Tried0
Tomos Watkin - OSB (Old Style Bitter)Not Tried0
Adnams - Topaz GoldNot Tried0
TicketyBrew - Pale AleNot Tried0
Adnams - LighthouseNot Tried0
Adnams / Camden Town Collaboration - South TownNot Tried0
Dark Star - Partridge Best BitterNot Tried0
Rudgate - Battle AxeNot Tried0
Blackjack - The PokiesNot Tried0
Liberation (formerly called Jersey) - Liberation AleNot Tried0
Caledonian - Deuchars IPANot Tried0
Thwaites - Lancaster Bomber (please now use the Banks's entry)Not Tried0
Cottage - Norman's Conquest 5%Not Tried0
Volden - VIMNot Tried0
Adnams - Old AleNot Tried0
Twickenham (also uses sub-brand Old Hands) - RedheadNot Tried0
Picture 1. The Forest Tavern, Forest Gate, Greater London
Picture 2. The Forest Tavern, Forest Gate, Greater London
Stephen Harris

Visits Details

26 Jan 2018 (Stephen Harris)
Busy with Friday evening, after work drinkers.
Hammerton - N14.10ExcellentExcellent, that has boosted my hop levels.
Hammerton - Pentonville Oyster Stout5.30Not Tried
Volden - Pale (formerly Pale Ale)4.60Not Tried
Siren Craft - Yu Lu3.60Not Tried
01 Dec 2017 (Stephen Harris)
Early Friday evening. There is a throng in the front bar and just one lady sitting all alone in the back bar. After dithering for a moment or two, I decide to join the throng.
Hackney - Best Bitter4.40GoodA traditional brown Bitter. Malty and quite dry. In rather flat condition but tasty enough.
Twickenham (also uses sub-brand Old Hands) - Redhead4.10Not TriedThis ran out whilst I was here.
Volden - Session (or Session Ale)3.80Not Tried
29 May 2015 (Stephen Harris)
Busy Friday evening session.
Adnams - The Herbalist (collaboration with Magic Rock)4.80ExcellentLovely botanical beer that I stuck with all evening.
Caledonian - Deuchars IPA3.80Not Tried
Thwaites - Lancaster Bomber (please now use the Banks's entry)4.40Not Tried
Adnams - Lighthouse3.40Not Tried
Volden - VIM3.80Not Tried
16 Sep 2014 (Stephen Harris)
Brief, early-evening visit; I’m on a schedule.
East London (ELB) - Orchid Vanilla Mild3.60ExcellentTasty, vanilla-flavoured Mild.
Rudgate - Battle Axe4.20Not Tried
Liberation (formerly called Jersey) - Liberation Ale4.00Not Tried
09 May 2014 (Stephen Harris)
Early Friday evening and the front bar and outside tables are busy – nobody is yet in the back bar, which is primarily used for dining.
Stod Fold - Gold3.80GoodFull bodied, well-balanced, golden beer.
Brains - SA4.20Not Tried
Tomos Watkin - OSB (Old Style Bitter)4.50Not Tried
TicketyBrew - Pale Ale5.30Not Tried
Adnams / Camden Town Collaboration - South Town4.90Not Tried
29 Mar 2014 (Stephen Harris)
A small number of customers in at Saturday lunchtime. Most of them are sitting outside, on a pleasant spring day.
King Beer (formerly W.J. King) - Green Bullet4.30GoodAmber in colour. Well-hopped with New Zealand Green Bullet hops.
360° - Sussex #424.20AcceptableA straightforward, malty, brown bitter.
London Fields - Shoreditch Triangle IPA6.00Not Tried
Five Points - Hook Island Red6.00Not Tried
Ilkley - American Smooth4.30Not Tried
25 Feb 2014 (Stephen Harris)
Early evening visit and the number of customers is not into double figures – very pleasant though.
Redemption - Fellowship Porter5.10ExcellentFlavoursome Porter.
Revolutions - Into Your Arms6.90ExcellentVery nice indeed. Aromatic, strong, Red IPA using Australian hops.
Caledonian - Deuchars IPA3.80Not Tried
Thornbridge / Thornbridge Hall - Jaipur5.90Not Tried
Derventio - Et Tu Brutus4.50Not Tried
Hardknott - Coolfusion4.40Not TriedBeing sold off at £2 a pint as it had not proved popular with customers.
04 Feb 2014 (Stephen Harris)
This pub is very quiet in the early evening tonight. Beer in notably good condition.
London Fields - Hackney Hopster4.20ExcellentA golden, well-balanced, pale ale. Perhaps not as hop-driven as in the past.
Anarchy - Smoke Bomb3.90ExcellentA lovely, very smoky, dark porter.
Caledonian - Deuchars IPA3.80Not Tried
Cottage - Norman's Conquest 5%5.00Not Tried
Adnams - Old Ale4.10Not Tried
RedWillow - Feckless4.10Not Tried
20 Dec 2013 (Stephen Harris)
Busy in the early evening. The back room is now open as a dining area and there are several large groups in paper crowns and Christmas jumpers.
Rooster's - Buckeye3.50GoodGolden. Initially very dry after the previous pint. But actually quite balanced and I grew in to it.
Stewart - Zymic3.80GoodGolden. Pungent hop oil tastes. In fact, it tastes to me like a green hop beer.
Adnams - Lighthouse3.40Not Tried
Dark Star - Partridge Best Bitter4.00Not Tried
Blackjack - The Pokies3.60Not Tried
05 Sep 2013 (Stephen Harris)
Opening night has been put back by a week and then delayed by a few hours. Builders still present around the bar and the pub name still being added to the fascia as I arrived. Very soon got really quite busy.
East London (ELB) - Nightwatchman4.50ExcellentLovely beer in absolutely superb condition. Dark and fruity and chocolaty and a bit roasty. The best I’ve ever tasted of this beer.
Mad Squirrel (formerly Red Squirrel) - Mister Squirrel (superseded by 4% version)4.30GoodA straightforward, brown, traditional, premium bitter. Sweetish.
Adnams - Topaz Gold4.00Not Tried

About The Forest Tavern

The pub sign. The Forest Tavern, Forest Gate, Greater London

Summary of Beer Scores



The pub is found in Forest Gate, Greater London, E7 9BB.

This pub in Forest Lane was established in around 1870 as one of a line of three pubs right outside Forest Gate railway station. Its name – the Railway Tavern. It was a Cannon Brewery pub, later part of the merged Allied Breweries block. The pub was rebuilt in its present form in 1925 and is actually quite level – not at the jaunty angle that it appears to be in my photograph. Like many pubs, this one experienced difficult trading days around the turn of the century, closing down in 2005. Punch Taverns re-opened the pub in 2007, but it was not a roaring success. Antic the took on the pub, re-opening the doors in September 2013 and re-naming the pub the Forest Tavern. There is a large front bar, with a rear room that has now been brought back in to use and is primarily for dining. In typical Antic fashion, the pub features naked floorboards, bare brick walls, dim lighting and lovely staff. Pavement tables. Portobello took over from Antic here in 2020.

We have visited this pub 10 times, seen 42 different beers and tried 15 of them.

Map location

Postcode: E7 9BB