Wednesday 9 December 2015

BRAPA - Rishworth

If you are going to be stranded in a gusty West Yorkshire downpour, waiting for a bus for 50 minutes, you could do a lot worse than Sowerby Bridge.  A brilliant real ale town, I was spoilt for choice so I plumped for a return visit to Firehouse as it was nearest the bus stop - it made sense.

There was only one other couple in, and they seemed to making their way through a 10 course meal, when a young chap brought a big plate out, they laughed hysterically and said they could eat no more.  Wifey almost offered me an onion ring but thought better of it.  Had they forgotten how much they'd ordered or was this some set menu banquet?

Anyway, I sat in the corner on my "favourite" green settee and supped half a Dark Star Espresso Stout, partly because I'd had a coffee on the train and didn't want to confuse my tastebuds.  Luckily, time moved on quite quickly and as a couple came in inquiring after tea and coffee (spit!  Errm this is a pub isn't it?!), I made my way through the rain to the trusty 560 bus.

Although the bus did go to Oldham Road in Rishworth where my pub was, I was reminded that BRAPA is never straightforward as the bus annoyingly used a turning circle 10 minutes from the pub, so a nice dark walk was required - at least there was a pavement or I wouldn't have fancied my survival chances despite my snazzy luminous hat.

Twinkling in the gloom - Booth Wood Inn, (South) Rishworth

757.  Booth Wood Inn, Rishworth

It wasn't a bad walk but I still tried to look like a knackered traveller in the hope of a free pint from the kindly looking barmaid - it didn't work.  I'm glad I accidentally chose an "Oates" beer (Dun Rushin'), as this pub is the brewery tap for this Halifax brewer.  The big challenge was finding a seat that wasn't geared up for dining which I've sadly come to expect from such remote roadside inns such as this.  Having said that, I found a rather grand red leather chair facing a roaring log burner and I've not been much comfier on my West Yorkshire midweek travels this year.  The chair reminded me of Harry & Paul in that gentleman's club, and I soon felt the need to grab the nearest broadsheet and speculate on who was the most "frightful quair" in the pub!    I was facing a high-spirited group of elderly walkers, who seemed to enjoy letting everyone know how much walking they'd done today.  Despite the almost gastro feel to the pub, the food was incredible down to earth - £5 for everything apart from the £6 fish n chips, including things like pie and mash.  They called the food "retro", but short of wheeling out a fondue set on a hostess trolley, I wasn't quite sure what this meant.  A gaggle of busy, smiley brunettes ran around clearing tables and serving retro grub, and if a good barometer of a pub is how happy staff and clientele are, then this pub is doing pretty well.  My Oates ale was pale, fresh and grassy - slipping down quickly enough for my to make the last bus back to "Sorbs" (as I call it).

Menu above wood burner at Booth Wood Inn, Rishworth
Happily, train delays in both SB and L**ds worked in my favour, and I was back in York for 9pm which would not be possible 99% of the time.  

So, another one off the West Yorkshire list and only two to go.  I still harbour faint hopes of getting them both done this month but with those festive vultures circling as predicted, it won't be easy.  I'll be back on Sunday for a report on my penultimate trip to Beds (well, for this edition of the GBG at least!) and a gentle meander up through Cambridgeshire's finest railway towns (perhaps).  

See you then, Si


  1. Sorbs !

    Like that early evening menu, don't see prices like that outside the 2-for-1s.

    Enjoy the Bedfordshire hills.

    1. Thanks Martin, those famous Beds hills! Not usually a fan of foody pubs but would make an exception here.