Inside, it’s had some paint and flooring, but it has lost the Holdens ale, with only keg offerings, but the lager was fine (and went with the curry!) and the staff friendly. I’d have preferred quieter TVs, though….
A diversion due to logistical re-jigging saw us here by car, as it’s a bit out of town for public transport. Worth the effort though: lovely, traditional, timbered pub with great beer and atmosphere. A shame we had to move on, especially to The Swan.
Our original final pub was to be Tinky’s, it being both sublime and next to the bus stops we needed, and still hadn’t been visited as one of #100pubs, but it had adopted its traditional, unpredictable opening schedule, so we went off to The Bell, giving up the quest for the day.
It’s very nice. It’s just been refurbished, with new landlord/landlady, and they haven’t wrecked it. There’s fresh paint, some new outdoor fittings, new handpumps, and new staff, but the basic fabric of this excellent pub remains. Andy’s mild was a bit duff, but replaced without question, and my Sunbeam was excellent, and the place was deservedly popular.
Bloxwich, just up the road from Tinky’s.
I’ve been past The Spotted Cow many times, generally on the way to Tinky’s, but this time we went in, needing to raise the #100pubs count a little.
Owing to the dire selection of beer, we had to resort to Budweiser, and fortunately we found a quiet corner in the place, which was inexplicably crowded. Not exactly awful, but loud, crowded, and with nothing to really wow the place. It could be lovely, though.
Bloxwich, just opposite The Lamp Tavern.
60s backstreet pub. First impressions didn’t encourage us, but inside was pretty good: real ale for me (Sunbeam, which was excellent) and Mild for Andy. Very pleasant landlord, pleasant locals- the bar was lively, but still a pleasant place. The jukebox was one, with a decent selection, but we could still hear to chat. Looks to be a pleasant locals pub.
Park Road, Bloxwich:
Previously Chimneys, then The Carousel, it’s an odd pub, but not bad by any means. We dived in for a swift beer, having a long wait for a bus in the cold otherwise. Sadly no ale, but the music wasn’t awful or deafening, there was a real fire, and the staff were pleasant.
I have been here before, but pre-Pubblog, so over 6 years ago. Back then I was underwhelmed, but I wonder if my tastes have changed? It’s not plush, but it’s a nice traditional place, and warm and welcoming on a very cold afternoon. Beer (including Pedigree) and staff fine, but the wine was a bit rough, apparently, though I’d not inagine it’s a wine drinker’s pub as a rule.
A new ‘spoons, as has been rumoured for a while, and again, it’s an old cinema. People my age or older will remember it as Flix nightclub, and those much older might remember The Grosvenor, operated by Pat Collins.
Inside, it’s standard ‘spoons, but feels much, much smaller than my teenage memory of the Flix nightclub. As it’s been open less than a fortnight, it was still very busy; we found it difficult to get a seat. Food, beer, and staff all fine, and completely as expected, but it has to be a good thing to generate this amount of business in Bloxwich; maybe the much-quoted Wetherspoon halo effect will happen?
Quite a surprise this: we were visiting because a friend’s band was playing, so we got dragged along by Andy, and didn’t know what to expect. Inside, it’s quite traditional, but we thought that was probably the corporate Banks’s makeover from a few years back- whatever, it’s pleasant, nicer than expected for a backstreet boozer in Bloxwich. A couple of guest ales, and Banks’s on a hand pull, decent wine at a good price, and very pleasant staff. Hard to judge the normal atmosphere, as half of Essington were in there.
I’d not been here for around 15 years, and it hasn’t changed a bit. Pleasant locals pub with Holdens beer. Pleasant staff and locals, a real fire. Beer was well-kept, entertainment wasn’t stupid loud.