|Now living in the sewers beneath Stoke town centre|
Today was going pretty well after a slow start. Wellers and the Boat & Horses had earned their BRAPA gold stars, and it was time for pub #3.
Time to negotiate one of the most upsetting underpasses I've ever witnessed. How we came up in the right place, I'll never know! Too busy looking at my phone, Daddy BRAPA exclaims "Cowabunga!" or words to that effect, because he has seen this lovely looking building, the Holy Trinity Catholic Church and some time vaccination centre for the insane ......
Our next pub was the key one geographically, a bit of a walk, but still classed as Newcastle-under-Lyme though it must have been bordering Hartshill, where our 4th and 5th pubs would be found. We passed the sort of disturbing street art that makes up 30% of RetiredMartin's blogs ......
When we see the pub, it is the most quintessentially micro backdrop. My bingo card would be flashing if I'd brought it. Set back off the road, next to a tattoo parlour and funeral services .....
It didn't exactly fill you with the joys of spring, but Daddy BRAPA was looking chipper enough with his trademark smile .....
Another BRAPA day, another GBG entry called Cask , this one Newcastle-under-Lyme (2003 / 3566) and at this point in history, I'm assuming there are now more Casks than Red Lions. In spite of ourselves, we are pleasantly surprised as we take our pints of Thirst Class Oatmeal Stout, served by a very nice bloke, around a corner, perfect for a bit of 'own food smuggling'. Although Dad is disappointed at the pub's missed business opportunity of having a guest ale on named 'Kevin Lownds Embalming Fluid' he is inspired enough to observe that he feels the standard of micropubs has improved since our early days of visiting them circa 2012. Ones like this and Wellers, and those we observed on New Year's Day in Blackpool, have warmth, depth and comfortable seating. This one even has horse racing on the TV. Maybe micropubs are merging into pubs, and the term will soon be obsolete, the founding father Mr Hillier can be knighted for his services to the pub industry, and we can move on. Hard as it is for me to watch any horse race without thinking of the Peter Cook / Dudley Moore Derek & Clive horse racing sketch, I'm so convinced the horse called Indy Five is going to win, I refuse to let Dad leave until we've seen the race. Of course, it finishes nowhere. And there we go, this pub representing one of the most thrilling aspects of pub ticking - 'expecting it to be shite, turns out (more than) alright'.
We crossed the invisible border into Hartshill, where the first of two pubs were found on the same road. The second of which doesn't open til 4pm, so no rush, being only 3:17pm.
|"Oi mate, eyes on the prize, camera is this way!"|
|Jesus in my Fun Sponge|
|Can't lie, he's looked happier today!|
|Not sure what I ordered but wasn't SeaCider|