York today, armed with a list of pubs to visit supplied by well-travelled Twitter chums.
As we approached York on the train, it was foggy, the landscape hazy and a line of trees looking as forlorn as a line of customers waiting to be served in Wetherspoons.
We spurned the wallet-lightening “joys” of the York Tap and headed for the Maltings. This pub styles itself “a proper pub for grown ups” and we couldn’t argue with that, with well worn wooden panelling, interesting seating and about a hundredweight of metal adverts on the walls giving just the right amount of ambience.
Beer-wise I really wanted to try the Black Sheep to see if it was still possible to keep it well, but my nerve failed me and I settled on York Guzzler and a coffee porter, which threatened to keep me awake all afternoon. The Guzzler lacked a bit of condition but the porter was bang on, scoring a solid 3.
We still had time for another before lunch, so we set out to find the House of Trembling Madness.
This is a two part operation with an off licence downstairs and the pub upstairs. To say their beer list is extensive would be an understatement; they have more beer than Noah had animals. I’d didn’t browse as I didn’t want to be the one who asks, “have you got such and such?” and in vain he finds he actually hasn’t…
Upstairs, the pub space soars up into the ceiling void. It’s the sort of place you wouldn’t be surprised to find a goat tethered to the foot rail. Instead, I found a man asleep at the bar. He was sitting on a bar stool, pint in front of him, eyes closed, perfectly balanced as only the practised morning drinker can be.
The cask choice is limited but I had halves of Wilde Child and a Chew Chew Salted Caramel stout, which didn’t disappoint. They do a limited food menu backed up by a bewildering choice of nuts – not all of them on bar stools.
A limited day today, next time it’s the full day option to pick off the rest of the pubs on the list.