Eagle-eyed readers may have noticed I didn’t score the Batham’s in the wonderful Vine.
Don’t read anything into that; it was Good (NBSS 3+), fully deserving of its GBG place.
It’s just the beer next door was even better.
I doubt you’ll be following me to the Black Horse though.
A friendly, modernised, opened-out fun pub with Jamie Vardy on every screen, unidentifiable R’n’B from every speaker, and everyone seemingly drinking Carling (except the pre-teens, I add for legal reasons).
Lots of Black Country pubs have this family atmosphere, but often they’re a bit more unspoilt.
It’s actually Guide entries like this that give you confidence in the GBG. The only reason this is in the Guide is because the beer is good, and here the Enville was superbly smooth and tasty (NBSS 3.5+).
Google Maps said 1 hr 20 to my final GBG West Mids tick, which suddenly seemed a lot after that cheese cob.
Brierley Hill is no Venice, but then Venice is dirty and smelly and overpriced.
And really, are there many views better than this in the world after 3 pints.
The other Brierley Hill highlights are more modest.
If only I’d resisted the cobs I could have had Mandy’s tasty plaice.
Just out of Brierley Hill, it suddenly gets dark. Really quick.
So dark that the walk through the former mines at Pensnett was a bit scary. It’s amazing how you find vast areas of wilderness in the most built-up areas. Makes for good comfort breaks though.
But then suddenly the bright lights of Lower Gornal greeted me like old friends.
Somehow, I resisted the Bull’s Head and kept walking uphill.