Review: The Dewdrop Inn (Ilkeston)

The Dewdrop is a pretty special pub to me being one of the pubs I’ve frequented for about 15 years and has aside from one “dark time” been a consistently excellent real ale pub (as shown by the frequent CAMRA awards)

Located on the outskirts of Ilkeston next to the train tracks it was first known as The Middleton but later changed the The Dewdrop Inn.

Over the years a number of landlords have passed through its doors to being us to the present landlord and the Erewash Chairman of Camra John Cooke (A retired police officer with a sharp wit and a good eye for ale) and his delightfully hippy looking wife Yvonne (Who has an equally sharp wit so mind your manners!)

The Dewdrop is remarkably spacious in the same way Dr Whos tardis is. The rooms do not appear especially large however the sum of the parts forms a spacious and always well stocked pub. The interior is relatively untouched and has a distinct 1940′s feel to it and has been excellently maintained.

There are 3 rooms (4 if you count the hallway which has a few chairs)

The first room contains a pool table (and for once there is enough room to take shots….can’t stand places where you have the cue near vertical to take a shot) an excellent jukebox with some of the finest trash you will ever hear (Sigue Sigue Sputnik anyone?), an LCD TV if the cricket is on and plenty of seats. The decoration is the usual beer mat come ancient beer bottle fare however the range of the decoration shows the length of time this pub has been around.

Although you can’t see the pool table in the above photo you can see the jukebox….everyone’s seen a pool table…how long has it been since you saw a 7 inch jukebox like that? Exactly..

The smaller room has a real fireplace which is occasionally lit making for a small quiet room (with tons of kids toys which never get apprehended by adults….honestly) This room can comfortably sit 15 or so people (might get a bit noisy though…)

The larger room is where the fun at the Dewdrop is found (Dr Lovesale has seen some sights…) a much larger room with a glorious fireplace which is frequently lit especially in winter (And where many a crisp packet is tossed) The decor is again the usual fare but makes for comfortable pub.

The hallway is a great place to sit for a quick pint if your passing through and if your into fruit machines there is a 10p a go machine which is good for a laugh.

Now…the beer….that’s why your reading I’m sure….

Frankly the beer at the Dewdrop is usually excellent. John keeps beer in excellent condition and sources beer from a wide area meaning (bar the usuals such as Bishops Farewell) there is usually a great selection to keep you going.

There are usually no less than 5 real ales on at one time (including the regulars) Bishops Farewell is one of my favorites and thankfully a regular here, a beautiful malty pale slightly cloudy beer with floral notes.
The other beers are usually a nice selection of dark, pale and everything inbetween.

There is a great lager (and i mean an ACTUAL lager not Stella/Carling/Fosters/<insert generic lager>) called De Konig (if memory serves) which actually tastes nice and European, well worth a try.

There’s a wide selection of bottled beers on offer if you fancy take out or just something different (Usually Oakham or Funfair) and if you fancy taking out one of the real ales on offer you can buy one of those great milk carton jobbies to take out with you.

CAMRA members can show their cards for a discount (I’m sure you were expecting nothing less from the pub owned by the CAMRA chairman of Erewash)

Food…..not often I get to write about food, since most pubs serve such generic fare it’s not worth mentioning. But the Dewdrop serve up some classics which while simple….are just great. They serve up a nice selection of cobs…huge ones…with slabs of cheese….ham..salad or whatever you fancy. My father in law can attest to the ham cobs being great…and he is quite sparing with his praise on that particular topic. Occasionally soup and rolls is served up which makes for a great winter warmer alongside a formidable barsnack selection.

Now i love my bar snacks and the Dewdrop I’m pleased to say does not disappoint. Nuts, crisps, bombay mix etc….all there…waiting to invade your veins with that glorious fatty goodness.

Book lovers may be interested to know that the Dewdrop is part of some scheme which allows you to “borrow” books on the basis you register with a website and record where you took it from and left it.

In short The Dewdrop is a gem of a pub which are these days in short supply with great ale, good food and more importantly an excellent landlord who knows his beer and is enthusiastic about it (which these days goes a long way) Although i do frequent Wetherspoons you can’t help but feel the whole experience is somewhat sterilised by the lack of real “publican” with personality.

The Dewdrop is located slightly hidden away on Ilkeston Junction. Since im so pathetic with directions see the google map below for details:

Click for Google Map Location

The address is

24 Station St,
Ilkeston,
Derbyshire
DE7 5TE
0115 932 9684