This next one was marvellous, but frankly you’re going to need to look at the pub porn and imagine it, so poor was my note-taking.
I don’t normally stick a place straight into my coveted Top 100 on one visit but sometimes rules need to be broken (there are no rules).
Eagle-eyed readers, which narrows it down, will note that the New Inn is listed under Aberchirder in the Guide, but that’s a bit like saying Stockport is in Greater Manchester.
The good folk wish to be identified as Foggieloan-ers and I always aim to please.
It’s the Newcastleton of the North, a planned village with grid pattern and handsome main square set off the, er, frantic A97.
The New Inn could be a Tim Taylors in a West Riding village, couldn’t it ?
I thought the pub was deserted too, till the nice lady appeared.
“Don’t mind me, I’m just nosey” I said, noseying around. Works every time and they never call the police.
One of the few non-Spoons to offer more than a single beer on my Aberdeenshire wanders.
Irresistible handpumps, I cooed, silently.
The nice lady told me the family were at a wedding in Ireland, and the pub livened up early evening. Familiar story.
Which made the ubiquitous but brilliant Windswept Wolf better than a quiet pub with four pumps ought to be. Cool, rich, silky NBSS 4. Yes, 4. Kill the fattened cow.
I took it for a tour of the pub, even challenging it to a game of darts.
But it was more interested in reading what the GBG had to say about it (“roasted malty brew with chocolate and vanilla coffee background“).
I settled on the William Younger’s room as my favourite, and frankly could have spent all afternoon there if Mrs RM wasn’t calling me about curry or something.
A remarkably eclectic soundtrack fitted the mood perfectly. The second airing of Nick Drake’s Pink Moon in 4 days.
What is it with Scotland and melancholy. It’d be Drake and Pink in a similarly rustic Buckinghamshire gastro.
The campaign to get it listed under “Foggieloan” in 2021 (and probably Bridge of Marnoch in 2022) starts here.