I feel a bit guilty about the lack of a report on St Andrews Brehouse, my new Norwich tick last week.  Sadly my phone camera had only just recharged enough to bring you one shot from that “Fine City”. And it ain’t from the GBG pub.

Spoons says This is Craft

St Andrews is part of the burgeoning City Pub Co empire, which has somehow reached eight pubs in Cambridge in as many years, including the new bar in the Old Ticket Office.

If I’m honest, many people wanted a Cambridge Tap at the station. (I wanted a Bass-only boozer, Mrs RM wanted a Brew Dog)

Quite how I’ve resisted the charms of a pub with 26 gins for so long, I don’t know.

Not that Oto

More folk (pashmina wearers, mostly) outside than in.  Unlike, say, the station bars at Doncaster, Weston or Newcastle, you can only access this from outside, so it doesn’t really feel like a waiting room.

It’s another classy piece of design.


Boasting the same sort of range as their city centre bars,


but with a scary/exciting craft keg range.


and even a toe dipped in the low alcohol market.

Not Becks Blue

Hard to judge the trade at midday.  As many drinkers as diners, which is rare for Cambridge.

And a right old mix of folk, hardly any of whom seemed to be heading for the train.


The stairs are a bit dizzying after 3 pints of keg or artisan gins, I would imagine.


Champagne Supernova” the soundtrack to an excellent Adnams Old, one of the joys of the Autumn we seem to have missed this year.  Always one of their best beers at its cool, fresh best (NBSS 3.5).  Tally Ho from Newton remains the Adnams  pinnacle, though.

I can’t imagine this attracts folk away from the Spoons and the circuit venues, and I doubt many commuters pop in on their way back from London, but a fair few foreign visitors did pop in with Paddington-style suitcases as lunchtime wore on.

In virtually any other county it would be a shoe-in for the next GBG Guide, but will no doubt give BRAPA a decision to make about ticking it off as a pre-emptive when he next pesters Cambridge in his funny trousers.


42 thoughts on ““OLD”

  1. “(I wanted a Bass-only boozer, Mrs RM wanted a Brew Dog)”

    LOL, the definition of marriage in a way. Forever compromising. 🙂

    “Not Becks Blue”

    Sigh. Still a bit confused as to how they can charge extra when a beer is over 6% but not drop the price when it’s below 2%!

    “The stairs are a bit dizzying after 3 pints of keg or artisan gins, I would imagine.”

    I’m dizzy just looking at it.

    “but will no doubt give BRAPA a decision to make about ticking it off as a pre-emptive when he next pesters Cambridge in his funny trousers.”

    Can’t wait for Si’s take on it. 😉


    Liked by 1 person

    1. I don’t know if I’m unusually synaesthetic, but I struggle to eat red cabbage, since it’s colour confuses my taste for some reason.

      The sensations evoked by words can sometimes do the same, and maybe because of that, I’ve never, given a choice, ordered a pint of Brewdog.

      It’s just unsettling, to drink anything with the word “dog” in its name, I find.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Etu,
        I like red cabbage, even though it’s more of a purple colour. When I were a lad my mother served it alongside her Lancashire Hotpot.
        It’s purple potatoes and purple carrots that really confuse my taste for some reason.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. I see from the last photo that you’ve got the US style food-from-a-truck. Oh the joy of modern civilisation. We’ve had so many wonderful mod cons from the US. What’s next? Flat in a car? Bedroom under a bridge? I’m hearing it is a big thing over there.


    1. MW,
      Your mention of “the US” and “modern civilisation” reminds me that American engineer Percy Spencer is generally credited with inventing the microwave oven.
      The Australian landlady of a proper London pub I used on Tuesday refers to a microwave as a “tucker fucker”.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Harvey’s Old is another classic example of the traditional, fairly low gravity style of old ale.

        You only normally see it in Harvey’s own pubs. Have missed it so far this year, but am determined to track some down soon.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Gales, Brakspear’s and King & Barnes all used to do an Old Ale of the that type – one of my favourite styles of beer 😀

        Serving street food from a Citroën H van – now there’s an original idea. Never seen that before!

        Liked by 5 people

      3. Yes, and of those Old Ales Gales XXXXX was the special one as it was a blend of the Prize Old Ale and the Bitter, with much of the Prize Old Ale flavour but drinkable as a session beer.
        I found XXXXX in a rural Gales pub one lunchtime in the spring of 1974, didn’t know its strength, had five pints and had developed a terrible headache by the evening.


      4. TSM, Ind Coope Burton Ale almost always gave me a thumper, especially at lunchtimes. Only that and no other did though. I often wonder quite what it was about it – I can’t recall the ABV.


      5. Etu,
        I think DBA was about 4½% making it equivalent to Bass and Pedigree though not from the Burton Unions.
        I always got on with it fine but in the 1970s had difficulty with Ansells Bitter which I quite liked and would drink but then would often bring it up after just three pints which I’ve never understood. .

        Liked by 1 person

    1. Wes,
      The nights are drawing in so it’s not long now until we’ve got Holden’s Old Ale near me and at 7.2% that’s a proper Old Ale – but then we’ve got proper Milds like Sarah Hughes Dark Ruby at 6%.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. “Sadly my phone camera had only just recharged enough…”

    Boak & Bailey have subscribers who buy B&B some beer, which B&B drink and then write about. Always seems more straightforward if the folks just bought the beer and drank it themselves – thereby cutting out the middleman who drinks it for you and then tells you what it tasted of.

    If you designated your regular readership as “subscribers”, they could join forces to buy you a replacement battery for your ‘phone. £40 should cover it, so that’s £5 from each of your readership !

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Nobody has left judging by the explosion of comments this last couple of days !
        Editors of local rags use “clickbait” to engage folks – they’ll be asking you for advice if your upward curve continues.

        Liked by 1 person

  4. I really like the OTO and both the cask and keg have been top notch on each visit. Agree, it should go into the GBG because I’d say it’s already amongst the best pubs in the city.

    Good to have Adnams Old Ale back, have enjoyed that in a few pubs around the city recently

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Have HQ announced yet in what year the 2020 GBG is going to be published ?
        Just recalling how RM and fellow tickers were in meltdown two or three months ago.

        Liked by 1 person

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