Wednesday, 8 February 2017

BRAPA - Back in the Bradford

In that formative year in BRAPA history (2014 to be precise), it felt like I was never out of Bradford pub-ticking, but since an amazing trip Jacobs Beer House on 4th November that year, I've not had reason to return to this crazy city.  Until now that is, two and a bit years on.

And so it came to pass that I was walking from Interchange station up through town on a relatively mild February evening - the dark evening sky stifling my inner core in a way which only a place like Bradford can.   And then, my pub/bar/cafe appeared on the street corner like a beacon of hope ......

A beacon of hope? 

1022.  Record Cafe, Bradford

"Mood" lighting combined with glaring spotlights coming from behind the bar meant that I could barely see what was on the handpumps at all - the blackboard was no clearer - and if you throw into the equation three stubborn old barflies who were reluctant to move, a perfect storm was created whereby I had no idea what I was ordering.  Just my luck then that I later discovered it was a 7.4% hoppy pale ale.  No wonder one of the men turned to me and nodded in a sage manner!  It made no sense at the time.  So what is this place all about then?  I'll tell you, vinyl, ale and ham.  And a sweaty Steve Coogan in his suit was sucking up a plate of salami, also stood at the bar.  Because when they say "ham" in these places, they actually mean "cured meats".  Gimme a bit of tinned spam any day.  I sat down facing the bar, back resting on a cushion against a brick wall.  So for the vinyl then .... and I spied an upstairs with records.  I went to explore, very retro, very 'cool', shame you couldn't sit up here.  And the record collection itself?  As you'd expect - boring Bowie, boring Beatles, Glumford & Sons, and just enough rare pressed pink Sex Pistols vinyl to make it semi-interesting.  Back downstairs, to my right, three elders greeted each other in French but became increasingly northern.  By the time I left, last thing I heard, and a direct quote "Eeeee corned beef hash!  Wi' brown sauce n Yorkshires, aye."  To my left, a beardie on a laptop.  He started on the ale but then ordered a pint of water with cranberries floating in the top with a side of olives.  Twat.  I liked this cafe's atmosphere though, and when the two bar girls wrestled a huge slab of pig into a vice like meat cutter, I had to stay for another half and observe.  A young Jesus finally came to their rescue.  You could do worse than visit this place.  A less pretentious Friends of Ham for an older crowd, and I do actually like that place too.

The pub's mantra

Pint of 7.4%, and flowers in an empty Beavertown can (classy!)

Meat n Merch, hanging from the rafters

Retro upstairs vinyl area

For sale.
The Great Yorkshire Progress

Only 21 GBG pubs left to do in the whole of Yorkshire (13 North, 8 West).  I'll be doing a couple of North ones over the weekend, see you Friday.  And work have promised me I can finally, finally get back to a few 4pm finishes which will help with some of the West Yorks trips that require a bus ride.
Still on for a late March finish, so this is my main BRAPA focus for the next few weeks.  Some, as you'd expect, have weird opening days and times so I will have to adapt my days a bit to achieve the goal.  


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