well, since we are now the inspiration and some are partakers in the opening ceremony of the Olympics it seems only fair to raise the profile of our fair city even higher- by having an old man witter on abut this and that beer in which ever pub or blah. Or my blog, as its otherwise known...
Thursday saw a photography trip with Maureen around the salubrious and distinctly less then salubrious environs of the River Don and Kelham Island. The idea was to try out my new camera, and, obviously, to pop in a pub or two.
The Gardeners Rest was our first port of call, with a dazzling selection of beers from breweries I';d never heard of. Being a sensible lad Maureen had come in his car so I had a pint and he a half. His Severn session was a light gold beer with not much to say about itself - puny bitterness and lumbering malt with neither aspect showing through. Go buy some Citra! Meanwhile, my Camden Golden Ale was streets ahead, with a distinctive hoppiness but a lovely warm malt to balance it. A cracking beer to enjoy sat by the river, as we did.
|Unintentionally sloping bar pic....|
Next we wandered in the direction of and into the Wellington at Shalesmoor. Another good array of beers with an emphasis on brews from Millstone and the Little Ale Cart brewery. Maureen declined a beer in here but I had a pint of the LAC Kimbolton which was a tremendously enjoyable beer which I could have drank all day. This simply raises more questions about why I don't drink in there more often to be honest.
Up Scotland street next for a glim and a pic of the decaying Queens Hotel, where "only" 16 years or so ago a friend worked and me and my housemate popped in for Wards and Pool once or twice. Its finally for sale, but the only outcome realistically is that some tax avoiding property developer will buy it and flatten it and build some "much needed" loft apartments in its place.
Last stop for us both, as Maureen had to get home, was Shakespeares where I had two halves, of the rather disappointing Oxfordshire Ales Team, and a half of the rather better Great Newsome dark mild, which I enjoyed sat in teh garden enjoying the last of the sunshine that was managing to peep over the roof.
A quick walk took me to Dada next, where I am becoming an all too recognisable feature (I like this homeliness, but am not sure this is good news for my bank balance) and where I started with, wait for it, a half of Keykeg Halcyon. Yep, that's right, upside down cross branded into my head as I sipped it, I really enjoyed the sweet citrus bite and flavours of grapefruit and pineapple, just as I had done on Saturday, hence my decision. This was followed by a pint of Jaipur, which was a nice satisfying IPA as it should be, although I can't get past my inclination that its "different" somehow.
|James looking at the Maui brewery price list..|
Here beervana was found as they had Dark Star Saison on cask, so I had to have a pint and a half, which I sat outside to enjoy in the last light of the day before heading home.
Yesterday, after work, I was at the hospital for 17.00 and on my way back into town settled on having a beer in the sunny beer garden at the University Arms. Some confusion came about because I was paying by plastic (bad Beefy) and the price came to £4.90, with crisps. Rather than charge extra for the crisps as I offered, or charge me £5.00 and put 10p in the charity box as I suggested, the management were adamant that no such deal could be done, and I bought an extra pack of crisps for later. A slightly bizarre and not very well thought through approach which ended up looking a bit silly I reckon.
I sat in the garden in the sun drinking my wonderfully weird half of Fox brewery Steamboat (with its absurd levels of distinctive malt) and an unusually disappointing pint of the normally excellent Dark Star Espresso stout. On the other hand, I did bump into Sheffield beer legend Aston, delivering some beer as I was on my way out. Good to see one of the "team" back on the scene.
Next I was propping up the bar at Harrisons 1854 enjoying a couple of pints of Moonshine, which was on decent form, and a half of Deception. This gave me chance to brief Dave about some of the details of our beery trip out Friday, and also to spend time somewhere cool and relaxing with decent music. All important factors.
My final stop was at Dada once again, James had cut his hair in protest at being photographed by me the night before, and Jamie and Steph were manning the bar. I got the chance to try something utterly insane that Emily had bought and also to repeat my beer prescription from the night before, so this was another enjoyable visit, although its gets more lively on a Friday so standing alone at the bar is a slightly sad preoccupation. Hence I ran away home for chicken wrapped in bacon and lemon rice.
One last point, according to the sign outside the Dog and Partridge the pub is closing down this week. Hardly surprising when you consider the arrogant and shortsighted greed of the pub company, and the shambolic conditions the manager has been given to trade in. I really hope the pub company will be big enough to admit they got it wrong and sell the pub as a going pub concern to an interested individual, then we might see throngs of customers in the Dog again, as opposed to it being forlorn and empty as it has over the last two years. I won't hold my breath though...