Yes, I know Hollington near Uttoxeter isn’t strictly in the Potteries, but anything past the JCB factory counts as Stoke to me. So cut your pedantry.
Attractive part of the world, underrated despite or because of Alton Towers. The weirdness of Cauldon’s Yew Tree to the north, the simple pleasures of Pedi to the east.
Hollington’s Raddle (not to be confused with the ’50s magazine) is what we in the pubbing trade called “a guaranteed tick“, along with Spoons, Embers and Labour Clubs.
That’s because the Raddle has year-round log cabin trade and a constant flow of gentlefolk dining, along with anyone asking directions to the Towers.
What Pub says it’s open from 8am, but that’s just when 54 year olds can climb on the tree house from.
The views to the hills would be good except for the Staffordshire mist, and the frontage is scarred a bit by the conservatory, but the outside pods (for dining, not smoking) add a bit of character.
In the event of a No Deal Brexit, or even worse a BRAPA visit, you’ll be able to survive in one of those pods for at least 27.5 minutes.
Once past the foursomes in the conservatory arguing about splitting the bill there’s a lovely bit of proper pub next to the fire, before the dining takes over.
Compared with all those keg American craft imports in Paris, the bar here is a delight. It took a few minutes to get served, but no-one asked if I was dining, and I didn’t need to ask the barmaid which beer was going quickest.
OK, I wouldn’t actually drink Hobgoblin or Bombardier, but it’s great to see a wall of BBB.
The Pedi was a bit chilled but tasty and sulphurous, NBSS 3 going on 3.5 if it warms up before I finish it.
So I take it for a little walk into the pub’s nooks and crannies on about four levels. Amazing what you find; table skittles, pool, darts and other deviant activities.
When I get back the bubbles have indeed gone, and the Pedi settled down. With a wondrous smell from the fire, it was as cosy a pub experience as I’ve had all month.
If all the other new Staffs Guide pubs put on Pedi or Bass I won’t have anything to moan about.