While BeerMat presses on with west Leicestershire and its old coal mining town boozers, I get gastro pubs in the land of Barbour and Branston pickle.
It’s about time the Saddle got into the Guide; it’s a virtual Beer guide desert in the famous A607/A606/A47 triangle.
Quite hilly around John O’ Gaunt, and I gave myself time for an hour’s walk in intermittent sunshine. You could have been in a Constable painting, bar the hay wagon.
I heeded the warning sign.
Apart from a couple of Barbour folk who looked me up and down, there was not a soul. I guess that accounts for the closed “Village Stores”.
Not much Barbour in the unpretentious Saddle, with no takers for a Sunday carvery at 12.30pm.
It’s just a pleasant village pub, ticking over with the custom you’d normally find in Spoons.
Not much interest in the real ales I could see, even the obligatory microbrew from Oakham and Retford.
Yes, of course I had the IPA. It’s made in a factory, you can trust it.
And it was OK, 2.5 at worst, though if you can’t pack a village pub for Sunday lunch then 3 beers are never going to be as fresh as the beer was in Manchester last week.
That thin glass does it no favours, either.