have been quite refreshed recently so have posted slightly less than usual. Well, slightly less than in 2012 and 2013.... Anyhoo, here are some details of a "never tried the same pub twice" four days pub crawl which I did over the bank holiday weekend, I'm told.
Friday started in the Harlequin with folks from work. I was on a couple of pints of the Exit 33 Mosaic pale ale, which is ace, not least because it has mosaic hops in it. I also tried it on keg (note, this is £3.70 a pint on keg. I.e. its a pound dearer, and that is all...). To be honest, whilst it should be better on keg, it was in fact better on cask. #science
Over to Shakespeares next to see Saara and Adele and others and to be joined by Tash and Matty. I definitely had a Blackjack beer, possibly 50 Dollar Chip, and maybe some of the Track and Squawk mango and marmalade gose. Which I made up. We finished the night in the Dove and Rainbow where, despite my age, and in celebration of Rachael's birthday, I moshed for about 3 hours. My neck and shoulders hurt for the next 3 days. Despite that, I enjoyed the do, and the company, and the Hambleton nightmare beer.
Saturday me and Tash headed for the Bath Hotel. If memory serves me right (rarely!) there were only 4 cask beers on and although the Blackjack tasted OK, the keg beers were once again the star offerings. Cloudwater had their English lager on, made with lager malts and seasonal English hops to give a refreshing, crisp and none too bitter pale lager ale. Th real star of the show however was the amazing Wiper and True Ella. A red copper colour almost, the fabulous flavours of the Ella hops and potentially red malt were stunning. Despite these being expensive beers, we both had two pints each along with some Karkli to eat. Its a shame in some ways to not find much worth drinking on cask but am sure this is a temporary blip. Either way, the Ella was amazing.
We finished the bight in BrewDog. I started on a half of Hardcore IPA, which seems a little less rounded and hoppy than the amazing version I had on cask at the Coach and Horses years ago, and Tash had 2/3rds of a Mad Hatter beer, the name of which escapes me fore a change. We finished on another of the same for Tash (!) and a mango Gose and Pineapple Berliner Weiss for me. Am not usually a fan of fruit beers but both were amazing - refreshing and sour and not too fruity. An excellent end to the night.
Sunday saw us in town shopping, before we headed for the Devonshire Cat for a change. We had pints of Abbeydale Alchemy (it had an |A in it...) which was a lower strength ale that tasted of grapefruit, an excellent and refreshing beer. I also tried a Monty's stout on keg which was perfect, along with some breadcrumb coated fried brie wedges.
We walked down next to the Beer Engine. We were just in time to catch Tom but he was soon away and we sat outside in the sun and the rain supping a range of Bad Seed Brewery cask and keg beers. I particularly liked trying their Cascade pale on both types of dispense - I think there was little difference in quality, but they tasted very different. The Espresso stout was also lovely, as was their saison. As usual, a stellar range of beers was available.
We finished the night in the Albion across the road, having a half of Camden Ink on keg and a pint of Sheffield brew Co Five Rivers on cask. An interesting mix of beers in three very different pubs on Sunday.
Bank Holiday Monday arrived, as did the rain. Luckily, when it rains, it keeps the large majority of pricks out of Bakewell. So we were able to go and have 4 hours of prickless entertainment in a refreshingly quiet Bakewell. We started in the Red Lion, and I had a pint of Chatsworth Gold and Tash, gawd luvver, a cup of tea. It came to a fiver, which is still expensive, but not for Bakerwell based on certain nearby establishments.
We went for a walk down the river and poppped in a couple of shops before retiring to the Manners for several pints of the Robinsons Hop beer - which the staff claimed wasn't as hoppy as the Blonde. Alas, I really don't get on with Robbies blonde so stuck to the Hop ale for three pints, whilst Tash had one and another of the Wizard Amber. Cracking beer and pork scratchings made this an enjoyable visit.
We finished our visit in the Castle. A depressing range of Greedy King beers awaited us (although I think they had a guest comping on) and we had halves of the Greedy King extra IPA at 5.6% or similar. The pub is probably quite old but loses a lot of its character to its food service and lack of original features. The beer was actually OK though....
We finished the quartet of quaffing in the Sheffield Tap where we had beer. I'm not even going to try and remember what I had, it was beer and it was very tasty thank you. Alas we had to leave about 22.30 for me to get the bus home and Tash to get back to hers but this had once again been a good day of travel and drinking.
So, overall, we visited 12 pubs in 4 days and had numerous delicious and completely varied types of ale in wonderful surroundings. Another, potentially not required, reminder of the merits of boozing in the Steel City and nearby.