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Beer gardens in St Albans: 15 of the prettiest places to go

PUBLISHED: 10:00 22 August 2017

These beer gardens are perfect for those hot summer days (photo: the Prae Wood Arms)

These beer gardens are perfect for those hot summer days (photo: the Prae Wood Arms)

Archant

Pop a bottle of Prosecco or grab a glass of real ale and head into the beer garden at one of these 15 pubs with pretty beer gardens in St Albans

In no particular order

1. The King Harry, 2 King Harry Ln

King Harry Lane’s eponymous pub focuses on good food with its raved-about Sunday roasts, and well kept drinks with an extensive list of real ales and beers to sample. There will be much to do, including the Craft Beer Festival and on Monday nights each week there is the quiz night to get involved in.

The garden: walk through the cosy interiors and you will be greeted by the welcoming beer garden with areas out in the sun or shaded by large umbrellas. Find a seat and enjoy a cold glass of real ale.

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2. White Hart Tap, 4 Keyfield

With its own on-site micro brewery, the White Hart Tap is passionate about beer. With The pub has four house beers, alongside three guest beers to enjoy with bottled craft beers, draught lagers and cider too. There is also a wide selection of whisky and a great wine list.

The garden: bring the pooch along and sit under the giant willow tree in the idyllic beer garden during the warmer months.

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3. The Six Bells, 16-18 St Michaels St

The half timbered, Tudor style Six Bells pub is over 500 years old and retains many period features including its open fireplace and wooden beams. If you join the pub on a Thursday evening (6pm to 10pm), there will be wood-fired pizzas fresh from the outdoor oven and cold drinks awaiting.

The garden: being located close to Verulamium Park, the Six Bells is ideally situated for a post-walk drink and some food in the beer garden.

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4. The Garibaldi, 61 Albert St

A pretty red brick tavern, the Garibaldi is bursting with flowers in the summertime and serves its simple food menu with changing specials inside or out in the garden.

The garden: drink and dine al fresco at the Garibaldi on the patio terrace garden, with pot plants and trellises that make this feel like a home away from home.

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5. The Peahen, 14 London Rd

The interior design at the Peahen has a stylish, vintage feeling with a modern twist that perfectly complements the history of the place, which was built in the late 15th century. Food is high on the agenda; the menu has featured tempting creations such as the buttermilk chicken burger with Emmental and BBQ sauce and desserts such as salted caramel cheesecake with a dulce de leche sauce.

The garden: step through the archway made of logs into the patio garden and gather round a large table with friends for wine and good food.

6. The Foragers at the Verulam Arms, 41 Low Dagnall St

The Verulam Arms is a unique pub – that also happens to be one of our favourite restaurants – serving “wild” food found by the Foragers. Making the utmost of seasonality and even holding far flung foraging exhibitions, this is exciting food in a gorgeous red brick building.

The garden: featuring a covered section packed with climbing plants and colourful benches exposed to the sunshine, the garden at the Verulam Arms is a peaceful retreat from the city buzz.

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7. The Rose and Crown, 10 St Michaels St

Recently refurbished, but still steeped in history, the Rose and Crown has plenty of classic dishes on its menu as well as some innovative ones including a spinach and ricotta strudel with ratatouille and salad.

The garden: Admire the 16th century architecture of the old place as you grab drinks from the outdoor bar that opens during the evening, making for a vibrant atmosphere during those balmy summer nights.

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8. The White Lion, 91 Sopwell Ln

With exposed brickwork and cosy décor, and specialising in homemade pies, the White Lion is truly a place of comfort for visitors. There is a dedicated lunch and dinner menu or light bites that comprise the snacking menu with moreish finger food such as black pudding scotch eggs with homemade brown sauce; pork crackling straws with apple sauce; or cheese and biscuits with pickle and pickled onions.

The garden: strung with fairy lights, there is a large lawn area and a covered patio area to choose from, all surrounded by large trees, creating the feeling of a secret spot to unwind in.

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9. Great Northern, 172 London Rd

“Made from scratch, locally sourced ingredients, seasonal and delicious!” is proudly displayed on the Great Northern’s website. This independent pub serves exciting, colourful and original dishes alongside plenty of wine, beers, spirits and cocktails.

The garden: order some food and take your drinks into the large beer garden, complete with large benches for a sociable atmosphere to eat, drink and be merry.

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10. The Plough, Sleapshyde

Looking like a little thatched cottage, the Plough in the small village of Sleapshyde just outside St Albans is a perfect retreat after a ramble in the countryside; why not visit the grand stately home Hatfield House for a wander beforehand?

The garden: the beer garden backs onto the surrounding meadows, making for a beautiful al fresco experience surrounded by nature.

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11. The Lower Red Lion, 36 Fishpool St

On Fishpool St, nestled among the pretty whitewashed cottages which are clad with flowers in the warmer months, you will find the Lower Red Lion. A traditional real ale pub, it is also a bed and breakfast with cosy rooms. With plenty of British dishes, there will be changing chef’s specials too so keep an eye on the board.

The garden: the tranquil surroundings of Fishpool Street make for a great spot for beers in the sun in the small beer garden.

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12. The Mermaid, 98 Hatfield Rd

With including CAMRA’s coveted Pub of the Year under its belt, the Mermaid has real ales and ciders alongside Belgian beers, so beer lovers will be right at home. You might even be tempted by the pub’s hearty pie and mash?

The garden: head outside to enjoy the atmosphere and you might catch some live music as you sit with lights overhead.

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13. Ye Olde Fighting Cocks, 16 Abbey Mill Ln

Located just a stone’s throw from St Albans Cathedral is reportedly Britain’s oldest pub, Ye Olde Fighting Cocks, that may date as far back as the 8th century. There are plenty of changing real ales to try and live music every Friday night in its open mic sessions. Food is excellent too, with chefs using locally sourced ingredients in their dishes.

The garden: there is ample outdoor seating at the Fighting Cocks and pretty views of trees and the old pub itself to boot.

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14. The Three Horseshoes, 612 Hatfield Rd, Smallford

Nestled between St Albans and Hatfield in the village of Smallford is the Three Horseshoes pub. Rustic interiors include exposed beams and vintage style décor or head into the large open beer garden and enjoy home cooked food with drinks in the sun.

The garden: outdoor seating on the lawn is surrounded by trees and makes for a great way to while the afternoon away.

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15. The Prae Wood Arms, Garden House Ln

You’d be forgiven for thinking the Prae Wood Arms is a stately home with its regal interior design and exterior walls. The 19th century former “cottage” serves fresh British fare and experimental dishes from further afield. Expect plenty of wines, gins and more on the drinks menu and friendly service too!

The garden: with lots of outdoor seating in the garden, the patio terrace extends out to a huge lawn that’s perfect for children and dogs to enjoy. At the bottom of the garden is a river and there is greenery surrounding the entire place – dreamy outdoor dining for all!

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