Last time in Inverness, I’d been impressed with pubs and beer quality. If Edinburgh = Manchester and Glasgow = London, then Inverness = Cambridge. Don’t @ me.
But two of those, the Phoenix and Blackfriars, are (temporarily) closed so it’s a good job there’s a Spoons, Brewery Tap and fiddle pub to take up the slack.
MacGregor’s is the other newbie, a pub for the American tourist and music lover (mutually exclusive in my experience).
By staring intently at the beardy Yanks, I dissuaded them from sitting down two feet from my table and attempting to play “Piano Man”.
but there was plenty of “Wow !” “Taste this Blackcurrant sour !” and “Awesome”
I like enthusiasm though, and decided to order a venison burger with my frothy Cromarty (cool, fresh, a bit plain compared to the craft, NBSS 3). The burger wasn’t cheap but was possibly the best I’ve ever had, and I’m a man of burger experience.
It’s a classy set-up, with posh whisky tasting downstairs. I stuck to the sours, being a bit common. Think of that Holyrood 9A in Edinburgh and you’re getting close.
And if you’re scared by fiddle music, it’s not all 1988 Waterboys.
The estimable Simon Urry of Highlands CAMRA, who produce some wonderful descriptions on WhatPub, gave me some more suggestions. Strangely, none of them were “go straight to bed with a Chinese takeaway“.
Don’t expect banter here, though one lady who’d worked through the card smashed a glass on her way out which raised the inevitable cheer.
Scarily, it was still only 19:04. Shall I cross the bridge and revisit the legendary Clachnaharry with its award winning selection of local beers, or slum it in the Spoons ?
Place your bets.