You’ll be pleased to know I’ve now completed my reports on Hamburg, possibly the only place I’d recommend that you stick to the Holsten Pils.
There’s a few posts from the Marches and the Dales to come, but this is a report from Deal, where Mrs RM and I met the lovely and endlessly fascinating Mrs & Mrs Southworths (I can be very formal) from the “Great Again” United States of America.
I’d collected a small present for Dave, which he looked thrilled to be dragging back to Minneapolis. Joan seemed less certain.
One of every English CAMRA branch magazine except Dorset, Cornwall and Devon there. Dave will have to return for those.
We met on a Saturday afternoon in The Ship, a longstanding GBG entry, though mysteriously now only with a micro pub for company. Quite a comedown for a classic pub town.
Having met the male Southworths on tour last year in Stockport, I knew they’d prefer the classic congeniality of the Ship over the micro and Spoons, so it’s a good job we found a corner all to ourselves.
And a perfect view of the bar (and, for once, the pumps).
Incredibly comfortable, a buzz of conversation, and a solid beer range, based on Gadds.
This was a fantastic session, even if the estimable Joan (and Dave) were outpacing me on the Gadds No.5 (NBSS 3). We talked politics and Dylan, pint glasses and Maidenhead. Dick took more notes than me.
Eventually we moved on to the Landlord (NBSS 3) and a Hophead that was the star of the day for me. Solid or better beer quality, but the pub’s the star. Our US guests had come here the night before and had some beer they thought “not great” but still came back.
But then, a duff one. Mrs RM’s Sea Shells tasted “on the turn”/”end of barrel”/”sour” as 3 of us sniffed or tasted it.
Dick had paid, so he took it back.
The Ship wouldn’t change it. “It’s fine, someone else is drinking it”. You know how it works. So Dick just left the pint on the bar and politely paid for a Hophead.
£60-odd quid we’d spent in 3 hours, and had a great time. Now, we left feeling a bit nonplussed. And who wants an argument with staff after a great time, Not Dick. Or me.