The Pump Room in Halifax used to be regular haunt of mine, but has been personally overlooked in the past few years.  This weekend I remedied this during a visit on Sunday afternoon.  The pub still has as good a beer selection as I remember, with 7 ales, and a couple of good continental beers as well.  I had a couple of pints there, both good solid beers, if not outstanding. The service and beer quality however was as good as ever.  The Ring O’Bells followed afterwards and a good pint of Pheonix Brewery Thirsty Moon, an amber ale with undertones of toffee or caramel, was very good and most welcome.  The Ring O’Bells continues to be an excellent pub with the young landlord providing an excellent choice of beers and good service.

The best beer of the week for me was from the Red Rooster on Friday night, Saltaire Stateside IPA.  On the strong side at 6%, it is a hoppy golden beer, both of which get my attention straight away.  The dry finish completed a very fine pint, and I will keep an eye out for this beer again.  Saltaire Brewery do a number of cracking pints, including their Blonde, Cascade Pale Ale and Trio Pale.  The visitor centre just outside its namesake town is said to be well worth a visit, something I mean to do when time allows.

It was a pity the half of another beer I ordered to go with it did not suit my taste buds one bit, so much so the name of the beer has been excised from my brain.  You get this occasionally when you try so many different beers in the name of research, in my case I’d say its happens every 25 pints. Of those same pints, I will find 5 excellent beers I would keep a watch out for in the future and the remainder are good solid ales I’d be happy to drink again.   The fact that 24 out of 25 beers would be a repeat buy is a fantastic testament to the high quality across the board from real ale brewers now, and one we should be proud of and support.

Looking further afield, by the time this issue hits the pub, the Tetley Brewery will be facing its last night as a working brewery, with the doors closing on 189 years of brewing on the 17th June.  I’m sure you will all raise a glass to the end of an era in Yorkshire brewing history.  The beers may not have been the most original pint, but it was still the beer that “waved the biggest flag” for Yorkshire.  There are plenty of smaller brewers proudly flying the flag, and producing better beers, but there a few with a product which had the national spread of Tetleys’.

A story regarding a PubCo serving notice to take a pub back into managed ownership would not normally make the news, but The Engineers in Primrose Hill, London is making the news due to a number of celebrity punters.  The pub was making £2000 per week when the current tenants moved in at the start of 1994, who also spent £70000 on renovations.  The pub is now making £30000 per week, a significant improvement in any sector.  Mitchells and Butler say they don’t want to change the place, but the landlord and staff are what make a pub, and removing them will change the atmosphere.  Over 1200 people have petitioned against the serving of notice. If they do go ahead then that £30000 per week will be heading southwards.

The Independent newspaper did a list of their Top 10 Bottled Beers recently and to their credit they pick some excellent beers, the highlights being Bacchus Kriek (cherry beer), Paulander Original (wheat beer), and Anchor Steam (amber ale).  A couple of selections missed the mark in my opinion, but beer is a subjective topic.

I mentioned the Bombardier advertising campaign last week, and another one has caught my eye this week, the Slow the Pace campaign from Kronenbourg takes some classic songs and gets the original artists to re-do them at a much slower tempo.  I’m not a massive fan of the beer, but seeing songs like Madness’s Baggy Trousers and Motorheads Ace of Spades in a totally different light makes interesting viewing for people of my generation.

Until next week, happy supping.