Crawling from Paramount to Cask

I am alive. My liver is functioning and I now have time to start writing about drinking again. There are quite a few reasons why I’ve been absent(bought a house, applied for lots of jobs, been poor, got new job, had no time!) because it’s been a bit of an odd year. I’m going to try and do at least one pub review a month next year but until then I’ll tell you about a really good pub crawl I did a few weeks ago.

 

In classic drinkingaloud style start in the Paramount –

The Paramount - Manchester

The Wetherspoons on Oxford road. If you have a smaller party start in the Old Grey Horse or the Circus the two tiny pubs on Portland street (but we had more than two people).

 

The Paramount was standard Wetherspoons, quite busy but coping. It’s gets a bit mad in there and is one of the bigger ones in Manchester. It’s good for the train station and bus though. We had a quick pint in there, something pale but my friend couldn’t remember what.

 

We then moved on to The Temple –

temple1

I really like the Temple but you have to pick your moments with it. We went slightly later a few weeks after and could barely get in the door. It’s an ex – public toilet and has getting close to the worst toilets in Manchester. The bar is so small all the ales are bottled. I had Coniston Bluebird which is a nice Bitter. The glasses are pretty much always warm in there too so once you’ve cooled the first down with your pint keep hold of it. They do a range of different bottled beers and have Tuborg on tap. We managed to get a table but the place fills up very quickly.

It's tiny.

It’s tiny.

The Temple belongs in the Northern Quarter but is infinitely better because it isn’t there. The juke box is excellent and usually playing something I like(this is entirely subjective) and we debated not moving on and staying there until we had to go home. However variety i the spice of life so we moved on down the road.

 

The Peveril of the Peak –

peveril-300

 

It’s an odd pub to say the least. Green tiled outside and with slightly bizarre opening times it has a weird little garden on the top of it that looks like a Wallace and Gromit model. It’s quite expensive but well worth a visit because it’s rare for these pubs to still exist.

 

There are a few rooms and its bigger than it looks inside so even if it seems busy you can usually find a seat. We were in there for one before heading over to

Rain Bar –

rain-bar-outside-front__260x160

Rain Bar used to be an umbrella factory. It’s fairly generic inside but the beer is excellent. They have JW Lees MPA which is one of the best pale ales I’ve had for a long time. I can heartily recommend it. There isn’t much else to say apart from there is a good beer garden for the summer and that the food is OK. Just down the road is the

The Briton’s Protection –

bp

It’s unfortunate that the pub’s name will put people off because it immediately puts you in the mind of a Britain First off shoot. It is nothing like that and is a really, really good pub. It’s a Robinsons pub so you can get Unicorn amongst many other things. It still has the original decor and loads of seats and rooms. It’s standard Manchester prices so don’t expect it to be cheap but it’s a really cool old boozer and you should go.

 

Cask –

cask

Eventually we stumbled into Cask it’s near MOSI and is a real hidden gem. It’s not the best place but it is just off deansgate. Now usually they have a good selection on but tonight they had very little in the form of handpumps. I went for one of the lagers because I didn’t fancy the one handpump beer that was left which I think was a stout. I had a high end lager, which was nice and cleared my head a little. Cask is pretty rustic in it’s furnishings but that makes it mre about the beer. It’s a good simple bar that’s always pleasantly buzzing and friendly.

 

I think someone picked us up after that but to be honest I just don’t know.

 

8 Pints\6 Pubs.

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Fuck the Cinema

I was on my way to the cinema with my girlfriend yesterday night to see Kick-ass 2 when I suddenly realised that I actually didn’t want to go and I would prefer a drink. I then realised that the ticket price was worth two pints. So I suggested a few pubs in an area we rarely ever go to.

It’s Liverpool road near the Museum of Science and Industry. Along that strip there is quite a worthwhile miniature pub crawl. I do this research so you don’t have to.

the ox

First of all we went to The Ox, it had a decent range of beers, mainly good standards such as Timothy Taylor’s Landlord but we both plumped for one of my favourites Copper Dragon. It was £3.50 a pint which is standard really. I’ve described it a lot before but it is a lovely pint it’s light and refreshing. It always goes down well.

copper dragon golden

The Ox is definitely a gastro pub with a few areas roped off just for food service and the main drinking area directly in front of the bar. This does stop us lowly drinkers sitting on the larger tables or tucking ourselves into the comfier corners of the pub. So we sat next to the door where fat middle aged people kept bumping into the table, nearly spilling the precious beer. There is definitely an older clientèle in The Ox but I think that’s because of the food. Apart from the seating arrangements, I liked the pub, inside was nice, the staff were friendly and the food looked good. But this is not a blog about food so we moved on.

deansgate

We moved on up to The Deansgate which had another decent range on with Copper Dragon again and an offering from the conwy brewery. I wondered which one to go for at the bar and was immediately offered a sample, which is always a good sign of a beer drinker’s pub. It was £7.20 for the round.

minersmountain

In the spirit of adventure I went for the Menera Mountain Ale from the conwy brewery, it was OK not as light as Copper Dragon but it was a nice drinker though fairly unremarkable with a slightly bitter taste. The tasting notes say this ‘This special beer is hoppy, moorish and ideal for summer as it is infused with heather to add floral flavor.’  I have to say I don’t remember any of that only that I quite liked it and would have happily had another. That’s a recommend from me.

The Deansgate is a nice pub, mainly wood panelled and with a varied age range. We found a quiet little corner to hole up in. There’s a lot of tram memorabilia around which was interesting, I felt like with a few more people inside it would have been a lot cosier. We’ll definitely go back to see what the next guest ale will be.

cask

Next we headed down to Cask which was very busy and we were offered a taster of the beers we were looking at which again is a really nice touch. Straight away Cask was my favourite, it was a good atmosphere and an interesting crowd, friendly bar staff good music which wasn’t overpowering  and a good range of ales and lagers.

caskgold

I went for Brewers Gold from the Pictish brewing company which was a nice mid strength beer. Nothing special but nice, smooth and light. Chantelle went for the IPA with the best brewers name of the night Ticketybrew which was much stronger with a more distinct taste which I don’t think I could have had a pint of. We had a really great time in there and it was the only place we thought about staying for another pint. Most of the seating is wooden chairs and stools which means there is plenty to go round but it isn’t the comfiest.

Despite looking like a young person’s place it was nice to see some older people in there it gave the place a great feel. Cask is my recommend of the night. The round was the cheapest as well at £6.40. I noticed there was a covered smoking area in the back as well which was good if you’re a smoker.

white lion

The final place we went was the White Lion, this was the most expensive, had the strangest clientele and we just generally didn’t get a good feel in there. They had TVs which I never like to see in a boozer though they had music on which is better than just having the news on mute but it was Magic so it’s swings and roundabouts. We both had pints of Hooky which is a nice beer not unlike Copper Dragon but a bit thicker, the round cost us £7.80! You can get Hooky very cheap elsewhere and there didn’t seem to be a reason for it to be so expensive.

hooky beer

I feel like the place just needs a bit more life to it, maybe some interesting guest beers. Considering cask was heaving and here was quiet I think they need to do something. The inside was nice but the outside wasn’t particularly welcoming. We would have just skipped it, I think, had it not been for this blog. Sadly I don’t think we would have missed much, more effort required.

This area is definitely worth a visit and we’ll be crawling this area again. Possibly stopping in The Ox for food.