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"Roger And Out" at the Frog & Parrot

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Former Essex and England cricketer Derek Pringle - now cricket writer - recalls an evening in the Frog & Parrot in 1985, drinking the 'home' brew! It is a true story as I recall my best pal telling me about the Essex presence during his visit.

 

"Not many championship games are abandoned without a ball being bowled. During my 14-year career, I can recall Essex falling foul only once, a match against Yorkshire in 1985 at Sheffield's Abbeydale Park. Heavy rain had saturated the outfield before the match, but while the sun would start drying it out by day, overnight storms would top it up.

 

Being of sensible disposition, the umpires had usually called the day's play off by 11.30am, which left many hours to kill (gyms not being as popular or widely available as they are today). The pattern that emerged was snooker until five or six followed by a visit to a pub called the Frog and Parrot. By which time the heavens would open again and we knew we'd be safe to stay until closing time.

 

Back then, the Frog and Parrot was run a by a friendly cove by the name of Roger, who brewed his own beer on the premises. His strongest brew, 'Roger and Out', was closer to anaesthetic than ale, and so strong it was served only by the half-pint.

 

Essex's South African batting star, Ken McEwan, was playing his final season for the county and therefore up for any last-minute challenges. He insisted on drinking pints of the Roger and Out, something the landlord let him do, though only after fetching a bucket. But McEwan, a man hewn from tough farming stock in the Tsitsikama, was more than up to the task and sank four or five without undue distress.

 

The trouble was, with a sleep-in guaranteed the next day, the evening continued courtesy of the hotel night porter. Instead of Ken waking up next to his room-mate, he was stirred at 5am by the cleaner hoovering around the sofa we'd left him on once the R & O had finally kicked in.

 

It didn't end there. Roger sent Ken a case of R & O to the County Ground at Chelmsford, where it probably still lies, well preserved and pushing 13 per cent proof in a dark cupboard.

 

If it is there, it should be administered immediately to the chief executives of Yorkshire and Lancashire - a mean spirit guaranteed to cure the mean-spirited." - Daily Telegraph 18/7/07.

 

 

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Brilliant story Chairboy.

 

I was a little too sensible to try the R & O in 1987 when I used to pop into the F & P quite often. It was a brilliant boozer then and offered a range of excellent ales. I always opted for Reckless, a strong (but not too strong) pint which to me had a slight strawberry taste to it. I think it was about 6% ABV. I loved that stuff.

 

Friends of mine - we were only just 18 - tried the R & O and usually one half-pint pot was enough. You could see their eyes turn glassy and their speech incoherent almost immediately. They were usually proud of the certificate you got with each half-pint (or did you get it after 2?).

 

A wonderful pub and to the best of my memory, no trouble whatsoever. If that case of R & O still exists, it might be safer stored in some nuclear bunker!

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I was brave enough.

 

Its serious stuff as the day after proved. Ive not touched it since them, but since I'm older and wiser now and an avid ale drinker I may give it another go. Just the one mind. :hihi:

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I was brave enough.

 

Its serious stuff as the day after proved. Ive not touched it since them, but since I'm older and wiser now and an avid ale drinker I may give it another go. Just the one mind. :hihi:

 

 

Do they still serve it, though? I thought, like the Reckless that I still pine for, it was no longer available. In fact, isn't the F & P just another run-of-the-mill city centre boozer nowadays offering bland and widely available beer?

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Do they still serve it, though? I thought, like the Reckless that I still pine for, it was no longer available. In fact, isn't the F & P just another run-of-the-mill city centre boozer nowadays offering bland and widely available beer?

 

I don't know actually. It would be a shame if they didn't.

 

It used to be such a nice boozer aswell. Back in the late eighties/early nineties we used to get made to take off our studded belts in case they scratched the chairs. And we did (what happened to rebellion) lol

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If I recall correctly, Roger And Out was actually served by the third of a pint. After you drank your measure, you received a certificate verifying the fact. If you had another, you got another certificate - but the writing was a little blurred. Then if you went for another to complete your full pint, you got another certificate on which the writing was virtually illegible.

 

During those early years of my drinking career, I was somewhat clueless when it came to the relative strengths of different beers, and just used to order whatever my eyes alighted on. In the Frog And Parrot, Reckless was the one I always asked for, and to discover now that it was hovering around 6% actually explains rather a lot about the way I used to feel afterwards. My recollection is that it was a rather sweet beer, of a kind I would probably turn my nose up at these days.

 

I don't remember the Roger And Out as being a pleasant drink really, but the place was always full of visiting students giving it a go.

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If I recall correctly, Roger And Out was actually served by the third of a pint. After you drank your measure, you received a certificate verifying the fact. If you had another, you got another certificate - but the writing was a little blurred. Then if you went for another to complete your full pint, you got another certificate on which the writing was virtually illegible.

 

 

I would concur with this.

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Roger and Out was indeed served by the third and I found it rather sweet and 'treacly'.

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Were is, was ,the Frog & Parrot?.

 

Division Street - Greene King pub.

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Loved it but it was very treacly as Joe said, tried something similar at Sheaf recently. Two halfs was well enough:hihi:

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i remember it well :)

 

we used to go there on a saturday before the wap opened back in the late 80s / early 90s.

early 90's ish it changed into a wine bar i believe??? :(

 

1 roger and out memory i have is a mate drank a few and threw up all over the floor so the barmaid passed him a bucket and mop to clean it up lol.

 

anyway heres my certificates i still have :)

http://pic15.picturetrail.com/VOL600/2588775/15796933/240631553.jpg

 

and the back of one

http://pic15.picturetrail.com/VOL600/2588775/15796933/240631441.jpg

 

oh yeah and i remember up past rare and racey just off west street (down a small alley) was an asian shop that used to sell little bottles of roger and out too.

and i remember the chalk board above the bar with different countries people had come from and had roger and out.

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