In our house we prefer city breaks to sun holidays, our most recent excursion was to Bath. Our destinations are one of the very few things that myself and my wife argue about. Bath seemed to tick all of the boxes however with a safari for the kids, a spa for the aforementioned wife and most importantly beer for me! I asked the Twitterati on #irishbeerchat for some recommendations and they came up trumps. Bath Brew House got a few mentions and a rain shower provided a good opportunity to check it out. I started off with their Emperor, a hoppy Pale Ale. Now I’m not an expert on Real Ale but I think it’s fairly safe to say that the bar for hoppiness is lower in the cask stuff than it is for the kegged ‘Craft Beer’ that I’ve become accustomed to. That said, this was a very tasty pint.
As was Lupulus, a fruity IPA brewed with Moteuka hops. A busy spot, worth a visit.
The following day I made my way to The Raven for a Pieminister pie and a pint. I actually did it the wrong way around and supped their house Golden Ale with my beef pie. The pie is baked with their house Dark Ale. The pie was delicious anyway, the Golden Ale was light and refreshing but the darker Ale had some lovely caramel complexity to it.
Later in the evening I ventured as far as The Pig and Fiddle which was very close to our accommodation.
It was a cool looking spot with a bit of character. I had a Dagger’s Ale which was brewed by someone who had been a part of the pub in the past. Nice bit of provenance and a grand pint.
The Saracen’s Head was a couple of doors up and boasted that it was the oldest pub in Bath. I thought it would’ve been remiss of me not to check it out. Sadly any character that it had once had been tidied away neatly. Age is no guarantee of personality.
Greene King’s East Coast IPA missed the mark badly, boasting on the (rather nice, in fairness) glass of being filtered. It was pretty bland stuff.
We went for an Indian in The Eastern Eye. The grub was good but the beer, Bangla, ‘voted UK’s best beer to go with curry’ really wasn’t. Still, you have to try them all at least once.
After a pair of poor pints I was very happy to get XT’s IPA 3 into me. Very enjoyable beer. I had it in The Cork which was very busy, I had come in at the end of a table quiz, the host had ran it for nine years and was going to pursue other comedic endeavours. There was a lot of love in the room.
Brewed up the road, my final pint of the night was Bristol’s Mischief. Solid beer, they seem to be a fairly consistent brewery.
Another pub which had been highly recommended was The Old Green Tree. It took me three attempts to find it open and serving but it was worth it. This is a quintessential olde English pub. Proper. I had a pint of their house Ale. It went down very nicely indeed on what was a warm afternoon.
I was a bit conscious that I wasn’t in any of the pictures so there I am, twice in a row. Just in case anyone thinks I’m just making this all up. It was our last afternoon in Bath and I called into Independent Spirit. I was glad I did. It’s a really good, well stocked off licence with a vast range of beers. Apologies for the lack of pictures! I picked up a couple interesting beers and had a good chat with the lads. Definitely check it out if you are in Bath. The Independent Spirit men said I should go as far as Hunter and Sons before leaving their fair city.
Hunter and Sons is so edgy I’d say the staff are constantly running out of bandages. It’s all mismatched furniture and squashed avocados on sourdough toast. But we’d already had lunch. I was glad to see BrewDog’s latest collaboration with Cloudwater; IPA V2 on draught. It was £7.50 for a half but damn it was a well made beer. Head and shoulders above V1 which I had found underwhelming. Juicy as fuck.
After that, the only way was up so my last beer in Bath was To Øl’s whopper Goliat. This one was lusciously dark and creamy. It concluded my visit nicely.
Those of you who keep an eye on my social medias will be aware I also visited Bristol. A much shorter blog on that trip is coming your way tomorrow. Cheers!