It is funny in life how good things tend to come in twos. Fish and chips. Cheese and wine. Rene and Renata.

And such is the case when it comes to the pub scene in Wimbledon Common, with the excellent Hand in Hand (last week’s Pubspy) sitting side by side with the similarly welcoming Crooked Billet.

The two boozers are not quite next door – some sort of house is, remarkably, situated between the two – but they are about as close together as any two pubs can be.

They are also, I am delighted to reveal, cut from the same cloth, with the Crooked Billet a hearty traditional country-style pub, complete with a plentiful supply of real ale, old school pub grub and a friendly, slightly middle class atmosphere.

I popped into the Billet last week, having nipped into its neighbouring pub for a quick pint first, and saw plenty of similarities between the two.

I think it’s fair to say the Billet is slightly more modern in terms of its décor and general feel, and it also seemed to be more a family kind of place. I spotted a good half dozen tables full of at least three generations, and this seems to be a place where families come together for a spot of Sunday dinner and a catch-up.

There were plenty of elderly people about, including one delightful, pipe-smoking old chap sat on a bench outside the front door who had taken it upon himself to welcome anyone who entered.

It was busy on this Sunday afternoon, and I was unable to get a table at first, but that didn’t matter as it was a pleasure to wander round and soak up the atmosphere.

Again, like the Hand in Hand, this place is a dream come true for a real ale aficionado, with a superb choice of beers on tap. There’s Directors, Bombardier, Young’s PA, Young’s Special and Young’s London Gold for ale lovers.

I was not dining on this occasion, but the menu is eye-catching, offering some smashing mains that will appeal to both the traditionalist and the more adventurous. There are plenty of traditional pub dishes on offer, and I expected nothing less.

Indeed, this is a traditional sort of place, the kind of old school English boozer an American tourist would hike across a county just to visit.

There is old-fashioned brick work covering the walls, blackboards displaying food and drink information everywhere, and an open fire for the cold nights.

In the summer, the pub has access to the Billet Green out front, where patrons can often be found enjoying a pitcher of Pimms while sat on a rug.

So, all in all, this place is a winner with me.

I know what you're thinking, though. What is a crooked billet? Personally, I don’t know (or, indeed, care) but if you ask a member of the bar staff, I have been informed they will give you a satisfying and interesting story about the origins of this term. Go ahead.....

Crooked Billet, 14-15 Crooked Billet, Wimbledon Common. SW19 4RQ.

DECOR: XXXXX Quaint and cosy, it goes for the traditional old-fashioned look, and succeeds.

DRINK: XXXXX A real ale lover’s dream.

ATMOSPHERE: XXXX Warm, friendly, slightly middle class, and very much a family place.

PRICE: XXX Not as bad as I thought it was going to be.

STAFF: XXXX A thoroughly nice bunch.