As you’ll have realised, I’m working my way round the Devon coast, eating a cream tea in every town beginning with “S”, and have reduced my Beer Guide To Do list to a mere 32 !
Yes, Duncan, you’ll see the spreadsheet soon.
Next up, a night in Exmouth, which brings the bonus of the (slow) train to Exeter.
An admission. Last time in Exmouth I had Bass in the Bicton and said “Blessings on your house, you serve good Bass” which I’d read somewhere that year. I hadn’t been allowed back since.
In 20 years I’d forgotten how loveably scruffy Exmouth was;
They still have dinosaurs here, possibly the Covid carrying ones that Devonians fear.
Two GBG ticks (proper ones this time); the first one a scruffy sensation.
I’m greeted by a
greeter mad dog at the First and Last, which has the same feel you get at a backstreet Newport (Gwent) pub that’s suddenly started brewing its own beers with paper labels. Oh no, don’t encourage them.
I feel strangely obliged to go for the homebrew with bits in it, even though the Otter is nearly as local, so pick one called Oyster Stout with bits in it (NBSS 3+ though), thank the exceptionally cheery barmaid, and head outside past the deserted TV room.
It’s all happening on the smoking boards. No, really.
It being August Bank Holiday Monday, homebrew pubs in Devon are legally obliged to play “Stairway to Heaven” instead of My Chemical Romance. But don’t worry, it’s only one day.
I expected Grapevine to be closed, but it was not only open but had a bar in the town square serving folk listening to Ed Sheeran covers (no video) with their Brewhouse & Kitchen style homebrew.
There’s a theme here. The staff directed me to a table, brought me change from £2 for a frankly tasteless pale beer, and I suddenly wished I’d eaten earlier.
It was the last day of “Eat Out Cheap and Load the Debt on Your Children“, so I added £4.72 to the debt with a Spoons steak (medium rare) with quinoa (keane-wah) salad and soda, plus an unnecessary half of Bays which was quite lovely.
Bank Holiday Monday was the busiest I’ve seen the UK since February. All we need to do is make 50% off food (and beer) till 2022 and make every day a holiday and ALL WILL BE WELL.