10th December 2022.
A milestone now, as the Top 100 pubs series reaches Pub No. 837. And it’s a cracker.
20 minutes walk from the New Clarence to the Station Inn,
with The County’s bright lights almost calling me in for a half of Banks’s Amber at the very first hurdle.
We pressed on through past pet hospitals and primary schools and play areas as dusk fell,
pausing only to admire some uncompromising street art.
There’s not many Beer Guide pubs this far north of the Old Town once you get away from studenty Princes Avenue, (apart from this one), and not many new GBG entries as traditional and unfussy as the Station Inn;
An instant classic, with warm welcome, raging fire, banter across the bar, a symphony in brown.
No telly for the World Cup, and sensible local cask beers. I’ll forgive the jam jars. This time.
Mrs RM steals my Shadow Fall Porter, she lives on the dark side, and leaves me the Jorvik Blonde I thought she’s want because it says “Blonde”. I can’t win. Both cool and clean, NBSS 3.5 stuff, though the Porter edges it.
The soundtrack, from a ghetto blaster on the bar, lurches from “Baggy Trousers” to “Message In A Bottle” via local adverts. Shazam identifies The Police in 0.7 seconds.
All the locals seem to leave when we arrive, which we take personally, but they’re swiftly replaced by a bloke with a well-behaved dog I managed not to trip over on the way to the Gents though I nearly catch light as the sparks in the fire pop and crackle.
The Gents is in the lounge bar, an absolute classic of its kind,
and as I return to the front bar I wonder how this place can have escaped the attention of the Heritage Pub lot.
And then I think “I love this pub“. I really do.