Near to, but not quite, the Jewelery Quarter. I’ve been going here for years, on and off, but seem to have missed logging it. It’s a traditional pub, and had been refurbed a bit over the years, and is just the right side of hipster now. Decent beer, food looked good too, but very, very busy- nice staff though.
Just up from The OCs, this is a place that’s not bad, but could be great: elegant, Victorian frontage and a traditional interior, but a cheapish pubco menu and Greene King beer, which meant Andy drank water…
Popular- very busy on a Saturday night on the run up to Christmas, but could be better: it could be the OCs or one of the Shakespeares.
We’d been to The Woodman nearby, so upped the pub count here. It’s Birmingham City University’s Student Union, but it’s also a pub.
Inside, it’s a bit bright and modern for a Victorian pub, and we were obviously not the target audience for the music. Staff were pleasant though, even when we were criticising the music next to the manager…
There was ale, but the pump was playing up, sadly. Not too bad a place at all, considering.
Original post here.
Pleasant enough still, but it’s been affected by the plague of hipster tosspots, so the food’s a bit fussy (brioche fucking buns and twatting ciabatta again), and the Pedigree was rough (though when Andy decided he couldn’t bear it, it was changed without question). When it came, the food was actually fine, but what’s wrong with bread?
Still worth a visit, just not what it was.
Corporation St, Birmingham City Centre:
It’s a ‘spoons. A busy ‘spoons. Move along, nothing to see here, but handy for the bus.
Croft Parade, Aldridge:
There’s a temptation to say this pub stands out 😉
The thing is, it does. Given it is occupying a former hairdresser’s shop in Aldridge’s 1960s shopping centre, you’d have low expectations, and be very, very wrong indeed. It’s lovely. The interior is basic, but clean and tidy, and comfortable. There’s music, but quiet enough to talk over, and the beer is great. There’s pork pies and cobs on offer too, and a very friendly landlord and great prices. It was full too, which has to be a good sign.
Original post here.
Shire Oak, Brownhills:
The Shire Oak has had a bit of a chequered history in the last year or two, with changes of landlord and very much in need of a refurb, so it’s good to see it open again.
That refurb has been completed, so I took a hobble up to see what’s gone on.
It’s a fairly standard pubco makeover, but it looks smart and clean- the refurb was needed, but a bit of atmosphere has gone (I overheard other customers saying the same). The famously upside-down Fleur de Lys walpaper has gone too, and the seperate bar and lounge have gone; the bar area is still there, which is good, but the only demarcation is a hard floor instead of carpet. Sadly, the current fad for tall tables and stools has made it here too: awkward and uncomfortable. There’s a big focus on food- the lounge area is mostly set out for dining.
There were several ales advertised, but only one available, but it was OK, and there was a fair choice of industrial lager, and some variety in the fridges (BrewDog Punk IPA, for example), but the choice for drivers was a bit limited as far as I could see, which seems odd for a pub on a major road junction with a full car park.
All in all, not a bad pub, and very busy. The staff were pleasant, and the beer OK. I’ll be going back, but I’ll miss the old pub.
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.
Bennetts Hill, Bitmingham City Centre:
I wasn’t expecting to like this. It has a bit of a chainpub feel to it, though a little upmarket. It’s a big space, all one room, and all the hard surfaces made it noisy, but most of the noise was lively conversation (until the Rugby started), though there was music, that, mid-afternoon added nothing; people chatting and drinking gave the place atmosphere and we both liked it more than expected.
Good beer too- I wasn’t expecting ale, but there was a choice.
Andy’s log here
Another by-the-numbers food pub, this time a Fayre & Square. Pretty quiet when we arrived at getting on for 10pm, it’s after the family feedbag market, and is very typically a feedbag pub, with owner Greene King’s beer in evidence. A bit soulless again, but not actually unpleasant, and convenient for my bus and Andy’s walk home.
Andy’s log here.