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Nelson Arms (Free House)

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Beer (sort)Average Score (sort)No. Samples (sort)
Harvey's - Old Ale (or Sussex XXXX Old Ale)Exceptional2
Kent - Brewers ReserveExceptional1
Downlands (formerly South Downs) - Evening Star Revival APAExcellent1
Kent - Starry NightExcellent1
Surrey Hills - CollusionExcellent2
Ramsgate Brewery (Gadds') - No. 3Excellent1
Durham - Chocka Mocha Milk StoutExcellent1
Iron Pier - Fruit CakeExcellent1
Kent - Swing LowExcellent1
Harvey's - KissExcellent1
Rother Valley - AnthemExcellent1
Rother Valley - Brew 3800Excellent1
Kent - Caramel LatteExcellent1
Larkins - PorterExcellent1
Dancing Duck - dcukExcellent1
Lakedown - HarmoniumExcellent1
Orkney (Sinclair) - Raven AleExcellent1
Kent - Pilgrim Single Hopped Pale AleExcellent1
Iron Pier - West Coast IPAExcellent1
Fuller's (part of Asahi Europe) - ESBExcellent1
Kent - MaiaExcellent1
Kent - Hygge Excellent1
Gyle 59 - Shave X BeerExcellent1
Rother Valley - Storm SurgeExcellent1
Kent - Beyond the PaleExcellent1
New Bristol - Bristol BitterGood1
Two by Two - Azacca MosaicGood1
Kent - VistaGood1
Saltaire - YSBGood1
Downlands (formerly South Downs) - Mister Watson's DecadeGood1
Swannay (formerly Highland) - Island HoppingGood1
Bradfield - Farmers Cherry BeerGood1
Cerne Abbas - Tiger Tom Ruby MildGood1
Rother Valley - Hoppers AleGood1
Three Legs - E S BGood1
Kent - Born To Be MildGood1
Siren Craft - Recurring DreamGood1
Lakedown - Kicking Donkey Best BitterNot Tried0
Brew York - TonkokoNot Tried0
Ramsgate Brewery (Gadds') - No. 5Not Tried0
Siren Craft - Soundwave IPANot Tried0
Purple Moose - Elderflower AleNot Tried0
Titanic - First ClassNot Tried0
Siren Craft - MementoNot Tried0
Sambrook's - Pumphouse Pale AleNot Tried0
Tonbridge - Ebony MoonNot Tried0
By The Horns - Macaroon StoutNot Tried0
Sambrook's - Night ShiftNot Tried0
Brew York - Fairytale of Brew YorkNot Tried0
Orkney (Sinclair) - DragonheadNot Tried0
Brighton Bier - MildredNot Tried0
Kent - The Quiet AmericanNot Tried0
Fuller's (part of Asahi Europe) - Gale's HSBNot Tried0
Brew York - Empire ESBNot Tried0
Ilkley - Ruby JaneNot Tried0
Verdant - PenpolNot Tried0
Track - SonomaNot Tried0
Anarchy - Citra StarNot Tried0
Anarchy - Gold StarNot Tried0
Good Chemistry - Storms PassNot Tried0
Siren Craft - Suspended in CentennialNot Tried0
Lakedown - Spring AleNot Tried0
Downlands (formerly South Downs) - RevivalNot Tried0
Hop Shed (formerly Unity Brew House) - Pecking OrderNot Tried0
Cairngorm - Trade WindsNot Tried0
Turning Point - Lucid DreamNot Tried0
Orkney (Sinclair) - Red MacGregorNot Tried0
Marble - MildNot Tried0
Adnams - Old AleNot Tried0
Verdant - Future YouNot Tried0
Downlands (formerly South Downs) - Tripod IPANot Tried0
East London (ELB) - NightwatchmanNot Tried0
Picture 1. Nelson Arms, Tonbridge, Kent
Picture 2. Nelson Arms, Tonbridge, Kent
Picture 3. Nelson Arms, Tonbridge, Kent

Visits Details

21 May 2024 (Philip Pirrip)
Evening visit until close. Couple of milds on in readiness for this forthcoming weekend's mild festival here including Sarah Hughes Dark Ruby.
BeerABVScoreNotes
Larkins - Porter5.20ExcellentFirst rate, keeping superb head and lacing until the end
Kent - Maia5.00ExcellentMost drinkable 5%er
Downlands (formerly South Downs) - Evening Star Revival APA4.80ExcellentSuperb with a tongue rasping dry bitterness. Not quite sure if this is revival of a Dark Star beer per se. Moreish
Bradfield - Farmers Cherry Beer4.20GoodGood but needed more cherry flavouring
Titanic - First Class3.80Not Tried
Sambrook's - Pumphouse Pale Ale4.20Not Tried
Sambrook's - Night Shift3.50Not Tried
Brighton Bier - Mildred3.70Not Tried
Brew York - Empire ESB5.40Not Tried
19 Apr 2024 (Ian)
Friday lunchtime. Everyone saying what a great pub this is. Relaxed welcoming lovely. Great beer and Cider selection
BeerABVScoreNotes
Rother Valley - Hoppers Ale4.40GoodProper English hopped bitter
Kent - Born To Be Mild3.50GoodGood malts
New Bristol - Bristol Bitter4.00GoodCharacterful English bitter
Kent - Vista4.50GoodNew single hopped beer cracking condition
East London (ELB) - Nightwatchman4.50Not Tried
Brew York - Tonkoko4.30Not Tried
Kent - The Quiet American4.20Not Tried
Siren Craft - Soundwave IPA5.60Not Tried
Downlands (formerly South Downs) - Revival4.80Not Tried
09 Apr 2024 (Philip Pirrip)
Evening visit until close.
BeerABVScoreNotes
Rother Valley - Anthem4.30Excellent4½* Exceptional condition with superbly balanced six hopping
Surrey Hills - Collusion5.20Excellent4½* This ale is addictive enough without being in this condition!
Lakedown - Harmonium5.70ExcellentA powerful taste in top notch form
Turning Point - Lucid Dream5.30Not Tried
Siren Craft - Memento3.80Not Tried
Marble - Mild4.10Not Tried
Verdant - Future You4.50Not Tried
03 Apr 2024 (Philip Pirrip)
Mid evening visit until close. Never not worth the effort of the journey here. Harvey's Easter Ale waiting in the wings to be put on tomorrow.
BeerABVScoreNotes
Fuller's (part of Asahi Europe) - ESB5.50ExcellentJust proves how good ESB can be
Harvey's - Old Ale (or Sussex XXXX Old Ale)4.30ExcellentSuperbly balanced with lasting head and lacing
Kent - Beyond the Pale5.40Excellent4½* Exceptional with an addictive bitterness making two mandatory
Durham - Chocka Mocha Milk Stout5.50ExcellentA smooth stout to round the evening off
Anarchy - Citra Star4.10Not TriedCame on late on
Good Chemistry - Storms Pass4.30Not Tried
Lakedown - Spring Ale3.80Not Tried
Hop Shed (formerly Unity Brew House) - Pecking Order3.60Not Tried
27 Feb 2024 (Philip Pirrip)
Evening visit until close. Train delays to and from.
BeerABVScoreNotes
Surrey Hills - Collusion5.20ExcellentBordering on a 4½ mark
Kent - Swing Low4.00ExcellentTop notch condition
Kent - Caramel Latte5.20ExcellentCan Kent and the Nelson do no wrong tonight
Kent - Pilgrim Single Hopped Pale Ale4.50ExcellentSingle hopper in impeccable form
Orkney (Sinclair) - Dragonhead4.00Not Tried
Fuller's (part of Asahi Europe) - Gale's HSB4.80Not Tried
Downlands (formerly South Downs) - Tripod IPA5.20Not Tried
Verdant - Penpol3.80Not Tried
Lakedown - Kicking Donkey Best Bitter4.20Not Tried
21 Feb 2024 (Philip Pirrip)
Evening visit until close. It was the Swannay that was tonight's biggest seller.
BeerABVScoreNotes
Ramsgate Brewery (Gadds') - No. 35.00ExcellentNo 3 just as it should be
Harvey's - Kiss4.80ExcellentQuite floral hopping
Gyle 59 - Shave X Beer5.10ExcellentFirst rate and a good body to this
Swannay (formerly Highland) - Island Hopping3.90GoodSuspect nearing end of cask
Cerne Abbas - Tiger Tom Ruby Mild4.40GoodBasic dark mild
Ramsgate Brewery (Gadds') - No. 54.40Not Tried
Purple Moose - Elderflower Ale4.00Not Tried
Siren Craft - Memento3.80Not Tried
By The Horns - Macaroon Stout5.80Not Tried
06 Feb 2024 (Philip Pirrip)
Evening visit until close. The Guv had earlier in the day taken ownership of a treasure trove chest of old CAMRA paperwork and was musing how to make it available for general viewing.
BeerABVScoreNotes
Dancing Duck - dcuk4.30ExcellentUnspectacular but in excellent fettle
Rother Valley - Storm Surge5.40ExcellentA nourishing 5.4% stout. Good nightcapper
Three Legs - E S B5.50GoodFound this rather cloying and certainly not a clean taste
Cairngorm - Trade Winds4.30Not Tried
Orkney (Sinclair) - Red MacGregor4.00Not Tried
Adnams - Old Ale4.10Not Tried
Kent - Brewers Reserve5.00Not Tried
Downlands (formerly South Downs) - Tripod IPA5.20Not Tried
Lakedown - Kicking Donkey Best Bitter4.20Not Tried
19 Jan 2024 (Magnus Greel)
Mid afternoon to early evening catching up with a couple of retired colleagues, quiet upon arrival much busier upon departure our table was instantly nabbed upon vacation!
BeerABVScoreNotes
Orkney (Sinclair) - Raven Ale3.80ExcellentA pale amber ale with a fruity and spicy hop aroma, with malt flavours both biscuity and toasty.
Iron Pier - West Coast IPA5.20ExcellentJuicy, tropical fruit & pine hop character with resinous citusy aroma.
Siren Craft - Recurring Dream4.60GoodCreamy with rich espresso undertones
Two by Two - Azacca Mosaic4.70GoodDid not seem like a beer to me more of a hazy alcoholic tropical fruit punch..
Saltaire - YSB5.50GoodFull bodied well rounded hoppy citrus and deep caramel fare.
Tonbridge - Ebony Moon4.20Not Tried
Siren Craft - Suspended in Centennial4.00Not Tried
Downlands (formerly South Downs) - Revival4.80Not Tried
22 Dec 2023 (Philip Pirrip)
Evening visit until close. The hubbub of a pre-Christmas plus good Friday turnout.
BeerABVScoreNotes
Kent - Brewers Reserve5.00ExceptionalThe very very best condition Brewers Reserve I have ever had
Kent - Hygge 5.00Excellent4½* Absolutely superb condition - really should give a 5*
Kent - Starry Night4.20ExcellentOne of a trio of 3 Kent ales in superb condition tonight
Iron Pier - Fruit Cake4.60ExcellentOnly a half but spot on for flavour
Rother Valley - Brew 38003.80ExcellentDifficult to pick out where the flavours came from. An enigma
Ilkley - Ruby Jane4.00Not Tried
Track - Sonoma3.80Not Tried
Kent - The Quiet American4.20Not Tried
Anarchy - Gold Star4.50Not Tried
01 Dec 2023 (Ian)
Perfect back street boozer. Friendly. Great beer range.
BeerABVScoreNotes
Harvey's - Old Ale (or Sussex XXXX Old Ale)4.30ExceptionalBest I've ever had this beer
Downlands (formerly South Downs) - Mister Watson's Decade5.70GoodLime and tangerine flavours. Hides abv well
Tonbridge - Ebony Moon4.20Not Tried
Surrey Hills - Collusion5.20Not Tried
Brew York - Fairytale of Brew York4.70Not Tried
Kent - The Quiet American4.20Not Tried

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About the Nelson Arms

The pub sign. Nelson Arms, Tonbridge, Kent

Summary of Beer Scores

 Total
Exceptional4
Excellent61
Good22
Acceptable-
Poor-

Website.

The pub is found in Tonbridge, Kent, TN9 1UP.

Beautifully refurbished side street local in Cromer Street, a few minutes walk from Tonbridge station. Features an always interesting selection of cask ales, real ciders and keg beers. Local CAMRA branch Pub of the Year 2020, 2022, 2023 and 2024. 10 handpumps plus 2 unused (dummy) ones and 10 keg taps on the back wall. Different rooms with all Nelson linked names. Massive real cider / perry range here too. CAMRA West Kent Pub of the Year 2023 then became CAMRA Kent Regional Pub of the Year 2023. Selected as one of the last 4 in the CAMRA National 2023 Pub of the Year competition.

We have visited this pub 25 times, seen 140 different beers and tried 69 of them.

Map location

Postcode: TN9 1UP