We left our teenage sons in the care of their overjoyed Grandparents and shot off for a romantic (i.e. drunken) night in Glossop. It turned out to be the wettest, but probably the best night of the year, apart from IndyMan/Jane Weaver of course.
Even my wife couldn’t place Glossop on the map, and she’s been there a few times in the past when we used to stay at the Little Mill at Rowarth when that was a classic pub. It’s fair to say the busy A57/B6105 roads through the town do it no favours, and compared to Hayfield it’s been thin on accommodation options for the Dark Peak tourist trade.
It’s always had some characterful pubs, particularly the three in Old Glossop which have all featured in the Beer Guide recently, the traditional Star, and the ultra-traditional Crown, as basic a Sam Smiths pub as you’ll find. The last two have some of the keenest pricing anywhere in the UK. The closure of the Old Gloveworks due to a fire was a big blow to expanded choice though.
The town is definitely on the up. Not only has the famous football team reached Wembley twice, but the new Travelodge encourages day-trippers to the North like me to stay in town. The accompanying Mill development by the Brook has brought big town shopping and eating (Wetherspoons) to Glossop.
Not much it can do about the weather though. Before the downpour I made Mrs RM at least do a walk up Blackshaw Clough and past the reservoir, which entitled her to a pint in the Queen’s Head back in the Old Town, in decent bench seating next to the world’s hottest fire.
This is a cheerful pub with plenty of mid-afternoon drinking, supporting my sort of beer range – Holts Bitter (NBSS 3.5), Unicorn (2.5), Wainwright and Thornbridge. Just up the hill I’ve found the Boar’s Head and Wheatsheaf equally good recently. Mrs RM started searching property details around this point (a third of Cambridge prices).
Traditional pub ticked, it was a soggy 20 minute run to the incomparable Globe, for early tea. The Globe reminds me a bit of the Sair in Linthwaite – slightly unpredictable home-brew but cheap and welcoming.
This pub should really be in my Top 100 – gorgeous interior, a real mix of custom, friendly down-to-earth service, live music, cheap beer (£1.80) and food. Our (vegan) curries were again superb and £3.20 each.
My only reservation is beer quality; the Stout was a solid 3.5, the Amber a bit ropey. Beer in the Evening carries some of the most diametrically opposed reviews possible for this pub – visit it yourself.
We had grand plans to price check the Globe against the Crown, and hunt down some Howard Town, but made it only 10 yards east to Harvey Leonard’s Wine & Ale Tasters, which just looked inviting. Unlike some of the new off-licences, there’s no real ale from a barrel, just a fairly intelligently sourced bottle list, self-dispense wine, and cheese platters.
There’s some communal tables, and we were joined by a group of lively septuagenarians. Asked for a beer recommendation by the group, I plumped for the Cloudwater DIPA, which the brave lady put away in no time while the men drank wine. The group were on their way to a smart looking fish restaurant down the road, another sign that Glossop is retaining evening trade in town more now.
Mrs RM likes gadgets, and eventually the self dispense wine machine called, allowing sampling of the whole range for a tenner. This was a bad idea, and I embarrassed myself by confusing Seaton Sluice with Seaton Carew, which I will now have to visit in penance.
I’d wanted to show off Glossop to Mrs RM; by Saturday she was close to favouring it over Preston for our retirement, and that won’t do at all.