The Friday Pint 2015 #21 – Busy

Those few of you who actually await these posts each Friday may have noticed that I’ve missed a few weeks recently. Partly due to laziness on my part, but also because I’m currently busy doing a lot of other stuff.

As for stuff you should be concerned with, the Beer Bash is just a month away. I’ll be sending e-mails out to volunteers very soon, and tickets are selling well, with some sessions sold out, or close to selling out.

Hopefully I’ll find time for a longer post, or find some other format to update you all. Until then though, have a great weekend.


Mud City Stout – A few words for Craft Beer Hour

This Tuesday, at around 8pm, the Birmingham Beer Bash will be taking over Craft Beer Hour. As there’s a lot to get in (ten of us selecting a beer each) the hour has become two hours. All 10 beers should be on at The Craven Arms. As much as I would have liked to have gone up, I am unfortunately working Tuesday night, and so I have travelled up today to drink a few pints of my beer, and write some words about it.

I first came to Sadler’s back in somewhere between 2008 and 2009. I once had a girlfriend who lived in the Birmingham area, and so I travelled up from Southampton every so often. During that time, I got to know some of the areas pubs, and grew to like them. I also found that if you travel a short train ride out of the city, you can find yourself amongst some beautiful scenery.

It was my second trip to The Windsor Castle that I fell in love with Mud City Stout. It is the only beer for which I have made multiple two hour train journeys to drink. Having been thinking about things I’ll miss whilst in America, it is Mud City Stout that comes top of the beer list.

When we were asked for beer suggestions for Craft Beer Hour, Mud City Stout came to mind rather quickly for me. If I started to think a bit longer, I possibly could have come up with another beer, one that people might associate more with the word “craft”. As it is though, I have chosen the beer that if I could only drink one for the rest of my life, it would be this.

I have had a few bad pints of Mud City Stout, and I apologise if when you get to try it, it isn’t quite as good as it should be. To me, Mud City Stout is liquid satisfaction. If Sadler’s can find a way of exporting some to wherever I end up in America, I will be very happy indeed.

I hope all of you participating in Craft Beer Hour have a good night. Have a few for me won’t you.


The Friday Pint 2015 #20 – The Dancing Man

Around the time this gets posted on Friday evening, I shall be within the grounds of Cardiff Castle, most likely enjoying a pint of Tiny Rebel’s Fubar whilst waiting to see the Manic Street Preachers perform The Holy Bible for what will be the fourth time. As it is, I am writing this post on Monday, from within The Dancing Man.

It’s been a few months since I have written anything about the Dancing Man Brewery and the Wool House. I could have written a review of the new venue on open weekend but chose not to for one simple reason; I wanted to give them a chance to settle down and iron out any flaws first.

From my first-hand experience, there have been a few flaws. The first noticeable one for me was an off flavour in the beers, presumably caused by the new lines. Thankfully, I haven’t noticed it the last few times I’ve been in, which implies that this problem may have been fixed.

The only other problem that I personally have encountered whilst visiting The Dancing Man, is a lack of beer. This was on a Saturday afternoon not long after the new brewpub had opened. I can only assume that this was because people drank the bar dry on the Friday night. In many ways, I am perfectly okay with this.

Aside from those two glitches, my experience of The Dancing Man has been a rather good one so far. The expansion has enabled Aidan to start running some of his beers on keg, and also to have around four to five Dancing Man beers on alongside guests.

I have so far only eaten at The Dancing Man once. It was though, a very enjoyable experience. Whilst the menu felt slightly limited in choice, the choice that I made, was delicious. Beef brisket with cheese and roast potatoes in gravy. Almost as satisfying as the cheesy garlic bread from The Platform.

As for the décor, the additions to the building fit in well. There is a focus on the maritime history of the area, with many pieces relating to the Titanic. There are also features, such as The Dancing Man metal sculpture and the lighting, which highlights the industrial history of the building.

Overall, I like The Dancing Man as a place to visit and drink with company. For the purposes of a quiet drink whilst writing, I prefer the Platform Tavern. Despite having strong ties between the two venues, there is definitely a distinct identity in each one.

If you’re ever in Southampton, or passing through on the way to the Isle of Wight, or headed on a cruise, you should pay The Dancing Man a visit. Whether you like beer or not, the building itself is worth having a look around.

The fact that the food and drink happens to be rather good is a bonus.