A bit of a stunner to come tomorrow, but I drop my chronology to bring you today’s Draught Bass Report from Etwall.
The villages between Derby and Burton off the A38 are a treasure chest for disciples of Pedi and Bass, as readers of BritishBeerMat’s blog will know by now.
Disciples of Buddha from nearby Ashe Hall were, however, noticeable by their absence in Etwall village, which I presume gets it’s custom from the Toyota factory later.
At 2pm, even Steve’s Fish Bar, one of the finest in the Kingdom, was quiet.
A quiet pub anywhere isn’t the best place to judge Bass, even in a pub as stately and welcoming as the Hawk & Buckle.
Inside it’s perhaps too modern for some (compared to, say, Joules), but smartly done in the Marston’s style Mrs RM approves of, so that’s OK. Apparently it’s now a free house, but if you skip Bass you’re daft as a brush.
The Lounge was a bit more traditional, but the equally quiet Public had the cricket on, so I asked the Landlady to take my Bass through. I suspect that was the extent of the “banter” while I was there.
As you’ll see, a bit of a sports bar feel, and I nearly shouted “Get in the hole !” as Morgan spilled another catch. At least there was no-one else to feed the glowing retro juke box (top) with coins and treat us to “Freebird“.
Anyway, posing tables and lack of Old Boys apart, this was an exemplary Draught Bass Experience (DBE), from the immaculate new glass to the cellar cool liquid and perfectly tight head. An easy NBSS 3.5; probably even better at 6.30pm.
This wasn’t my first excellent Bass in Etwall. The Spread Eagle has been in and out of the Guide with a similar Bass/Pedi range, despite being a free house.
Wikipedia describes Etwall as affluent. I guess that depends on whether you’re visiting from Farnworth or Fulham. The area around the church and almshouses is certainly worth the stop off the A50.
Ultimately, though, it’s the reclusive “Red Mushroom Photographers” who provide the tourist £ here.
I’m sure Richard Coldwell, an expert on such matters, will tell me they’re highly poisonous and shouldn’t be approached.
I escaped with a brown mark on my trousers. And a few worried looks from the locals.