Tag Archives: ale

The Ecclefechan Hotel

Ecclefechan:

I *should* have blogged this in May 2014, when we stopped here en route from Mallaig back home, trying for a cheaper option than Moffat but didn’t: maybe it felt the wrong side of the hotel/pub thing.

I’ll briefly mention the hotel- it’s ace. Great value and comfortable.

Besides that, it’s the village pub. Evidently once on the main Carlisle-Glasgow road, now the A74M passes by a short distance away, making the village quiet, but the proximity of a junction makes this a convenient pause.

In the bar itself, it’s pleasant and welcoming. Pub food, cask ale, a real fire, and friendly staff and locals.

The Cock Inn

The middle of nowhere, Glenluce sort-of:

We’d been here before, but it was a long, long time ago. Pleasant, old roadside pub, with friendly owners and decent food. One cask ale on offer, but I was driving :-(, so Becks alcohol-free it was. It had new-ish owners, and had been smartened up recently. Music, but not too loud, good selection of soft drinks. Great views over the bay to one side.

The Crown Hotel

Portpatrick:

Our base for a couple of days. We arrived in bright sunshine, having driven through snow, and grabbed a drink to sit outside with. Very friendly staff, good beer and wine, and great food, the atmosphere of an old-fashioned village pub in the bar, with a real fire. Popular for, but not dominated by food, and (as an aside) nice rooms.

The Grapes

Stranraer:

A Good Beer Guide and historic interiors pub in Stranraer. It was a bit early really, but (as we remembered) Stranraer doesn’t have that much to offer a couple of middle-aged tourists, so we dropped in. The interior is classic Scottish pub, the barman friendly, and the cask beer was the same local ale (Beltie Blonde) as at The Crown, but in better condition. Pity we didn’t feel like starting epic drinking that early.

The Blue Bell

Annan, Dumfries & Galloway:

We walked down to this from the Queensberry Arms. My phone told me it was this way, but we were reaching the end of the town, and I mentioned my concern. Then we looked upwards, to the huge blue bell. Maybe this was it?

Inside, traditional pub, with the interior mostly intact from an inter-war refit as part of a state-managment scheme in the area. Now it’s a pleasant community pub with a choice of cask ale, nibbles on the bar when we visited, and a really nice feel.

The Swan With Two Necks

Longdon:

We were actually here for a wake, the last time being for a wedding some 20 years ago. It’s changed a bit, having been closed for a while a few years back, and the current incarnation is obviously moving towards the food-led gastropub- slightly upmarket.

It doesn’t mean it’s just a restaurant with pub pretensions, I’m happy to say, it’s still a pub, and not a bad one at all. We didn’t have the usual menu, as they’d put a buffet on, but everything was decent quality, and the beer and wine were fine, and the staff pleasant. A little bit middle-class staffordshire for me, but just the right side of up itself.

Revisit (and re-opening): The Drunken Duck

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I’d detailed this pubs recent downfall on my main blog here, and I’m now pleased to note it’s back open since just before Christmas, with a new landlord (Tony from The Wheatsheaf). He’s doing a great job so far; the beer is great (and a good choice: Golden Glow, Doom Bar, Proper Job and HPA), the jukebox has metal, and there’s a live band on some nights, if that’s your thing.

The Old Moseley Arms

Balsall Heath:

My better half hadn’t been that enthusiastic about this, imaginiing it was in Moseley itself. Now, there’s at least one fine pub in Moseley, but the place itself is a bit posh brummie, a bit up itself.

Having reassured her, off we went. A slight hiccup finding the bus stop, but then a short ride and 5 minutes walk to a fine, fine traditional pub with great beer, a lovely landlady, decent music, and samosas. Inside is traditional, with open (gas) fires. A office Christmas party was in place in the back half of the room, but we could still hear each other and have enough space. A superb pub.