Keep reading, the Bass badges are coming up soon.


The good thing about these Beer & Pub Forum crawls is that, unlike the Japanese tourists visiting the city, you can dip in and out of our tours without getting told off !

Mrs RM and I dodged the standard menu in the Chequers in favour of pot luck in Oxford’s Covered Market, a place so famous we’d never heard of it.

It’s brilliant, somehow quirky but unforced.

Proper covered market, fake football club shop
Proper vegetables – no avocados

A high quality panini (Italian salami, brie) for £3 from Oxford Sandwich Co. set us up for the next tranche of proper pubs.

Oddly, opposite the vegetables there’s a display on some experiment they’ve recently started in Oxford to give women the vote.

Bet they vote for the Tiny Rebel guy

10 minutes to the Castle; it would have been 5 but dodging folk with Primark bags is a skill I’m still perfecting. And don’t people in Oxford walk slowly !

Oxford Castle.PNG

Most of the group had visited the Castle while the Official Taylors and Tim Splinter Group started the day on coffee in the next door Spoons.  Reports had been encouraging so we felt obliged to add a visit.


The Castle


A rare city centre acquisition for a family brewer, it’s a curate’s egg of a place.

Neither ancient or super-modern, it’s just pleasant, which is fine. A good place to get the full range of Hook Norton beers, though adding guests, a full keg range (below) and Tiny Rebel in cans tends to dissipate the turnover of the cask.


Officially good beer now


One of the themes of this crawl was how many younger people (under 53) there were packing the pubs and by no means all students. I thought they were all skint ?

At the bar Head-in-Hands man realises he’s forgotten his CAMRA discount vouchers.

Tiny Rebel cans – CAMRA approved

Saying that, the pints were served in proper chunky glassware with a decent head. I forgot to ask for my discount too, so £4.20 for the Hooky Gold.  Ouch.

Nicely poured sir

You can see Mrs RM and Tim discussing malt ratios below. Mrs RM was unimpressed by the Gold; I thought it was cool and tasty (NBSS 3.5).  Marital disagreement is a feature of this blog.

:Low ceilings, high stools

I had more problem with the low ceilings, high stools, and general absence of lived-in character, but a visit by a coach-load of Leeds United fans would soon remedy that.

Anyway, a possible pre-emptive tick and again a good mix of folk enjoying the indistinct jazz funk. Rugby fans consigned to the cellar, and quite rightly.








  1. Martin,
    As for “how many younger people (under 53) there were packing the pubs” you should have gone to the White Rabbit, most of them young enough to be my granddaughter, and mainly Japanese.
    Regarding “the full range of Hook Norton beers” the Olde Reine Deere in Banbury had six on the next lunchtime including the Mild and Double Stout.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’d forgot about your extension into Sunday at Banbury, Paul.

      I remember the White Rabbit being so packed I had to stand and neck a quick half, rather unpleasant. Oxford should knock down their pointless Universities and build more ancient pubs.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Listen,about the curling from a few posts back.
    If a person was born without arms and still wished to compete by using their leg to push the stone would it be known as toe-curling ?
    I’d get my coat but I still have it on in anticipation of the Beast from the East.
    Or as Russ would have it in Canada a spell of fresh weather.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. With regards to toe curling; tsk, tsk.

      The only toe curling I know is when the “earth moves”. Which, in my experience, is usually due to “tongue curling”. 😉

      And as for fresh weather, pfft. In the rest of Canada, yes. But we moved to the only part of the country that has weather typical to that of the UK.*


      * – meaning that if our windshields (windscreens?) are frosted over in the morning we get annoyed. 🙂


  3. Re-age and CAMRA voting…you lot are so unrepresentative of CAMRA members. I’ve seen the photos of people used in CAMRA HQ articles and website and they’re all very young and into their quality beer. It’ll be a walkover.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. “they’ve recently started in Oxford to give women the vote.”

    Chuckle (as opposed to heh). 🙂

    “At the bar Head-in-Hands man realises he’s forgotten his CAMRA discount vouchers.”


    “Marital disagreement is a feature of this blog.”

    Pfft. That’s a built in feature of marriage. 😉

    And that will have to do for now. (sigh)



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