22nd January 2020
WARNING : CONTAINS PROPER PUBS !!!
A bumper Shipley-cum-Saltaire special, aided by an Ibis giving me access to two new GBG ticks, a classic oldie, and a curry.
Oh, and tall buildings.
Shipley town centre took a post-war hammering, but the Spoons is majestic.
Actually, “Hullbaloo” is in good company for wacky names with “Don’t Tell Titus“, “Noble Comb“, “Al’s Star Bar” and of course “Fanny’s Ale & Cider House“.
Yes, I had the evil Norwgian keg, but after a consultation on ticking rules with Pubmeister I did succumb to the cask Buxton, which decent enough.
Quite a spacious little bar, with the only other customers hiding about 3 miles away at the back.
The highlight was the apparent Landlord humming to “Sir Duke“; humming to Lee Scratch Perry was more of a challenge.
And the loo art.
Unfortunately someone had to start vigorously nodding their head to the Kings of Leon, didn’t they. always a signal to drink up.
On the way to the Saltaire tick I passed one of the Proper Pubs Shipley used to take pride in, which is all the clue you need to guess which one.
As I approached the Salt CellarI had that felling of deja-vu all over again.
Oh, it’s our old friend the Victoria with a trendy name and a few more beers. Phew.
Very Bradford, with a moderately middle-aged pub crowd, live entertainment, decent cheap Saltaire and a soundtrack that veered wildly from 1985 to 1986;
Higher Love, Walk of Life, Invisible Touch and We Belong.
As you’ll know, Dire Straits is the sign of a Proper Pub, as Duncan and Simon will confirm.
The professional work done, it was time for a bonus. Chinese takeaway and cider at Fanny’s. There’s a song there, somewhere.
They’d even built the New Rainbow Chinese next to Fanny’s, which was considerate.
It’s been out of the Guide since the days when it was a major ale house to rival the Fighting Cocks, so what do you get in 2020.
Well, a sensational mullti-roomer with one of the best pints of Landlord in a while; rich and with bite (NBSS 3.5). The Landlord test passed.
A dozen or so drinkers of all ages spread out sinking foaming pints of White Rat in their Wilco T-shirts.
I went exploring, beyond the gaslit lounge. How did I not know there was an upstairs ?
The sort of post-punk jukebox that Mark Crilley can only dream of. I pretended to play “Life Begins At The Hop” for him,though sadly I was out of 50ps.
Somehow I resisted the Owd Roger.
Did I ****. Grab the chances when they come. Rich, complex, glorious. Just like Fanny’s.