There you go, a Blur* reference. No idea why, I think I’m bored of all the Gallagher hype at the moment. So much thought goes into these post titles, particularly a post spurred by England’s dramatic “dead cat bounce” in the Ashes.

More Nottingham pubs, I’m afraid. We really should have stopped at the Room with a Brew (all beers £2 a pint), but you know how it is.

On to the famous “pub in the caves” for tea.

Hand & Heart

Truth is the Indian recommended by Beermat didn’t open ’till 5.  What happened to those all day Indian buffets ?

So Mrs RM had been perusing the Hand & Heart menu, which looked a bit high class for us me.

Surprisingly, the place was packed at 5.30 with Sunday lunchers.  You could have been in Islington.  If their pubs were in caves.

Sunday lunchers

We opted to wait for a table, something I normally resist on principle.  At least it meant I could observe the bar and mentally scold people for not drinkingthe cask.

Get me beer” said Mrs RM, not for the first time.

Top barman

Now I’d been here a couple of times since it burst back onto the Notts Beer Guide circuit at the start of the decade.  On the first trip, mid-afternoon, I thought it was an absolute classic.  On a quick return with Dereham Charles the pub was a bit better than the beer.

Beer Board

You can see why it’s a CAMRA favourite.  A bit of a “Who’s Who” of local microbreweries there on the board.

That don’t impress me much. What did was the way the barman was tasting his beers (unprompted) and taking off one that he wasn’t happy with. And he was happy to give me a recommendation without asking “What sort of beer do you like ?”.


The Falstaff Pale was good (NBSS 3); a stout by Totally Brewed was outstanding (NBSS 4.5), a beer of the year contender.  Perhaps a few more beers than you’d expect in what felt more restaurant than pub, but they obviously care about their beer.

20 minutes in, we were offered a treasured seat in the “main cave area“.  We chose to sit in the bar, because;

  • We couldn’t be bothered to move again
  • We’d seen the caves and they weren’t all that
  • We had a wonderful conversation about American boyfriends on the next table to entertain us royally (just like Harry and Meghan)

When it came, the Sunday roasts were exceptional, albeit not quite at Marstons 2-for-1 prices.

Vegetarians look away now
Scatter cushion alert

As a restaurant with good beer, it was great, and Mrs RM can overlook scatter cushions and an absence of beer mats better than I can. To be fair, there were folk just drinking, and those beers are well-priced on any day.

And any pub that plays “My Sweet Lord” followed by “Shelter from the Storm” is OK with me.

Great cave toilets too.

Cave life
Ancient toilet graffiti – probably a Derby fan


*For North American readers, Blur are an annoying bunch of mock Geezers, much overrated by 40-somethings who missed the 1980s.

12 thoughts on “CAVE LIFE

  1. Great post that had me chuckling and not just at Shania Twain reference! I applaud your reluctance to accept an absence of beermats and the intrusion of scattercushions. Falstaff and Dancing Duck are my two favourite Derby breweries… consistently good beer

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Normal Nottingham people are not allowed to sit in the cave area,as it is set aside for tourists who want to dine in a cave.
    We always sit in the front area.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I have just done a crap post about the pubs we have been to in Nottingham over the last three weeks.
    Sorry to correct you on a couple of points about Nottingham and its pubs.
    I will try and do a 2017 round up,if i do it that will be my last post for quite a while.

    Cheers Alan

    Liked by 1 person

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