It was, of course, spectacularly kind of Pubmeister to taxi me around his own patch on my Scottish West Coaster, and Bing Maps reveals he drove 3 hours to help me make this a Ten Tick Tuesday. And his driving is certainly better than BRAPA’s.
The only downside is the tinge of guilt I felt, leaving him in the car listening to Shostakovitch* and reading Moth Monthly.
Five more for you now, one of which is a bit of a Scottish legend (just like Duncan).
Speaking of legs, Duncan has asked that I avoid shots of his famous knees after the court case the last time.
First up, just across the A737 and past Barcraigs Reservoirs, lies the Uplawmoor Hotel.
You’ll know I like to provide you with the essential cultural attractions in the places I visit. Well, Uplawmoor has whooper swans at Loch Libo.
Not much whooping inside, despite the encouragement to toddlers to play in the bar area. I like that. But I resisted the toy trains.
The main item of note was a mini assault course to get to the pumps, carefully constructed by placing the bar stools in the daftest place.
£125 for a double room tonight, or £2 for a decent half of Kelburn (unless you’re an Australian sports reporter) in one of those tastefully modernised upmarket hotels that dominate the GBG along with Spoons.
Into the Glaswegian suburbs, and the rather gorgeous looking Cross Stobs Inn.
Being kind, it has dark wood and knickerbocker glories (not shown), a Scottish speciality.
On the other, the lady who eventually served me after five minutes at the bar was clearly more interested in the preparation of the knickerbocker glory than the £2 for a half of tepid Kelburn (NBSS 1).
It was the worst beer since that Mamma Meerkat in Dorchester, and I definitely left it. Goodness knows where.
Now it gets exciting, as we leave behind the venerable old coaching inns and head for the indoor ski slopes at Renfrew Shopping Centre. If this is your introduction to Renfrew, you may be a bit disappointed, though there is a Denny’s at the roundabout.
What can I say about The Lord of the Isles ?
But. But. But.
£1.75, or £1.25 to those of us who love cask, for a thin but tasty NBSS 3 pint of “fake” Plum Porter for St Peter’s. Duncan looked on, horrified, fearing emergency loo stops on the hard shoulder of the M8.
Then the real drama, as Duncan attempted to drop me within sprinting distance of Glasgow Airport without incurring a parking charge. A man after my own heart.
Paisley’s airport Spoons is landside, of course, but Duncan’s exemplary directions (“cross at the Holiday Inn, left at Body Shop, up the down escalator, can’t miss it“), got lost in translation.
Seeing a Spoons up the stairs, I sprinted up and suddenly found myself in the queue for the TUI to Ibiza, which as you know has no entries in the Guide.
So down the up escalator, as Duncan said, and the tiny Sandpiper, little more than café size.
Five pumps, three of them the same one from Arbroath.
With Duncan waiting for me on the runway, I necked a half in 30 seconds, slow by Mrs RM standards. Cool, rich, tasty, NBSS 3.5. Deserves its GBG place despite the hassle, and still your best bet for a 5am pint in Paisley.
Duncan seemed disappointed I hadn’t brought him back some rock from Ibiza.
And so to the famous one, the Fox & Hounds in Houston, a pub that’s been taunting me every GBG launch for 20 years.
I thought it was wonderful. Rambling, smart but still pubby, and with the beer of the night from Kelburn.
You even get a picture of Duncan’s knee.
Ten in a day is plenty, folks.
*The 10th, obvs.