Next up, a pint with Pubmeister and the effervescent Madame Luna at the Raven, which is the first pub that pops up when you type in “Glasgow” on WhatPub so it must be central. It’s certainly not far from Primark.
But only after I’d dragged a fudge-caked Mrs RM through the gleaming Merchant City,
and into the Modern Art Gallery with its usual eccentric exhibitions, including this unusual perspective on the Brig pub (info welcomed).
The Raven looks a bit modern and functional, which is what it is.
Someone who shall remain nameless described this place as “a very mainstream attempt to cash in on the craft market.”.
But what’s wrong with that ? Everyone knows big companies run pubs best.
Oddly, the Raven is part of a small chain (Signature) of half a dozen or so, so credit for a professional look that Greene King would aspire to. It reminds me of that midrange craft place (Princess Alex) that polarised opinion in Northampton recently.
Unpretentious styling, very knowledgeable and friendly staff, beers you’ve heard of below £4 a pint, Lou Reed’s New York Vs the dead rubbers on a dozen screens, WiFi for Mrs RM’s job negotiations. What more is there to say ?
Well, the beer could have been cooler and fresher, that’s what. But then you could say that about virtually every pub in June. And then they put on Mumford & Sons, at which point we decided against a second pint. Their ought to be a Beer Guide symbol for M&S or C******y soundtracks. You can blame the heat for the soup, but not for the musical slop.
Now Pubmeister has pontificated on Glasgow craft recently, but we were fairly unanimous in picking the Pot Still to resume our conversations about Trump and Scandi travel. Madame Luna knew the way there through the back alleys.
This is a Top 100 pub, really, ornate, cheery, irreverent and very much a Proper Pub despite the adventurous craft and cask range.
A great hour here, and some decent beer around the NBSS 3 mark. But a year ago I was drinking nectar in the Bon Accord and it’s hard to accept anything less than that, heatwave or not.
A classic pub though , I think, with serious beer but less serious signage.
And, as always, a real mix of students, suits, locals and weirdos.
If only real ale took a summer break.