My penultimate Greater Manchester tick came in Standish, a place I’ve always mentally put in Lancashire (don’t start, Mudgie).
Hoot Standish (presumably there’ll be a branch in Hooton soon) sounds very micro in the description, but with 3 major advantages over the usual Herne franchise.
1) It sells lager, so everyone feels comfortable, rather than excluded. You’ll see folk below and above the usual 50-65 age range here, some with bobble hats. Ever seen a bobble hat in Herne ?
2) Though small,there’s a good mix of seating so you can hide away with your Ale Cry and not feel obliged to talk about other new micros or how dreadful Spoons are.
3) Pies and cheese. Not your usual feeble micro effort but a full cabinet of the things, full of calorific goodness.
I loved it. Cheery barmaid, decent Silver Tally from up the road, owls in the ceiling, blankets for the cold, Randy Crawford on the stereo (guess the song).
Only one more Greater Manc tick. Ashton-in-Makerfield here I come !