The first two arrived and ordered two pints of Hop House 13. When it was poured, they presented the page as requested on their mobile phone. Sadly the friendly teenagers who man the beer pumps were flummoxed "We don't know anything about this?". Our team is a persistent bunch. They insisted that a free pint had been promised and a free pint was expected. One of the helpful teenagers checked Facebook on his own phone. Sure enough, the pub was offering a free pint. At this, the teenagers decided to check with the manageress. Sure enough, it seemed that the promotion had been offered. The free pints were duly despatched. Then the rest of us arrived. As with the advanced party, we ordered our Hop House 13. Sadly we were informed that the barrel had run out. We asked if it was being changed "Oh no one can do it right now. Come back later". As most of us have a couple of pints, Carlings were ordered instead. We could have the free Hop House 13 as a second pint. The anticipation would make it even more tasty.
So then the time came for the second round. We went to the bar in eager anticipation. The helpful teenagers announced "We can't change the barrell because the cellar is locked and the manageress has the key". We queried "So lets get this right. You've run a promotion on Facebook to get people in the pub. Then when they arrive, there isn't enough beer and the cellar is locked, so it can't be rectified and the manageress won't come down and open the cellar?" The teenager helpfully replied "Erm, sort of yes".
Well much as we all wanted a free pint, we were thirsty. So an Estrella, five pints of Carling and an IPA were ordered. With that we said "Can we have two bags of Cheese and onion crisps, two bags of Salt and vinegar, a bag of Ready Salted and a bag of nuts please?". The helpful teenager responded "Sorry we can't get any crisps, they are in the cellar". So no free beer, no crisps.
You can imagine how we felt about the whole thing. We've been going regularly to the Hammers for at least 17 years as a group. Since Ember Inns took the venue over, guess how many free beers we've had. The two tonight, before the "barrell ran out". Guess how the pub have shown their appreciation for our custom over the years? Well about six years ago we were given a plate of Sandwiches for free! We were mightily impressed. We enquired what the occasion was. The repsonse "Oh nothing, there was a funeral earlier and we had a plate of sandwiches left over". As I usually drive to the pub from football, I usually have a pint of lager shandy and give a few of the boys a lift, As such I normally have the cheapest lager. This used to be Carlsberg. About two months ago I was informed that Carlsberg was no longer served. The reason? It was cheap and the pub made more money on more expensive premium lagers. I kid you not, that was what the helpful teenagers told us. Oh how we laughed. Of course there is no reason to keep a bunch of blokes who are regular customers happy, is there. We will just keep coming back, won't we?