So, here I am, back in the mild climate of England, Southampton to be precise, in the best brewpub in town.
I would say best pub, but I currently can’t decide whether The Platform Tavern is better than The Rockstone, or vice versa. One has a range of good beers brewed on site, the other has great steaks, and beer supplied by Sadlers, including one of my favourites, Mud City Stout. The fact that both places exist, albeit at opposite ends of the town, is a good thing for Southampton. The only thing that would make it better, is if a pub opened in between the two to break the walk.
Both The Platform Tavern and The Rockstone have events on this weekend. The Rockstone are celebrating their first birthday this weekend, and I’ll be visiting there tomorrow. It’s a bit of a walk from the city centre, but it’s arguably the best range of beers, burgers, steak and fish, you’ll find anywhere in Southampton.
Back to now though, I am sat in The Platform Tavern. This weekend is the Winter Blues and Winter Brews festival, which runs until Sunday. 10 beers on stillage complement the five beers on the bar. The draw for me, and the reason I’ve come back to Southampton, rather than rest after the flight, is the 16 Tonne Chilli Chocolate Stout, one of five Dancing Man brews on this weekend.
As I bought the beer, I was told by Stewart, the owner of the Platform Tavern, that the stout was rebrewed last week, as the balance in the first batch wasn’t quite right.
It’s true, there isn’t as much chilli in the aftertaste as you’d like, not that it makes a bad beer though. As it is, I rather like it, and from the experience of other beers, I can only imagine it will improve.
On a similar note, Troubadour is one of the three beers on the bar, along with Pilgrims Pale Ale, and Fidlers Jig. Whilst I have been able to try the latter two again, I’ve yet to retry Troubadour, which I described on my first taste as “a perfect example of a dull brown ale”.
My second try pretty much confirms that opinion. I’m not a fan, though that’s not to say anyone else isn’t, or shouldn’t be. The fact that I don’t particularly like Troubadour doesn’t really bother me. There are still at least six more beers brewed here that I would happily drink. The fact that Southampton now has Dancing Man, and Vibrant Forest on its outskirts, and a pub like The Rockstone is something I’ll happily drink to.
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