Wednesday, 15 February 2012

Tour of West Lancs Pubs ~ Part 2

As I wrote last month, CAMRA Southport & District Branch covers most of West Lancs, much of which isn't easy to get to by public transport.  To ensure the pubs aren't neglected for the Good Beer Guide, we visit them by coach.  This is the second such trip this year (you can read about the first here).

1. The Martin Inn, Burscough:  our first port of call was almost empty when we arrived.  After a year's closure, this pub was reopened in 2010, having been refurbished in a rustic theme with a real fire that was already lit when we arrived.  It is a food pub, and I noticed there were reasonably priced Sunday meals available.  The beers were:
  • Dent Aviator.
  • Martin Inn - Barney's Brew.
The Aviator was lacklustre - unusual, compared to my previous visits to this pub - but the Barney's Brew was in good condition.  I don't know who brews it for them, although the young barman tried to blag us that it was brewed on the premises.

2. Farmers Arms, Burscough: a pleasant canalside pub with two fires, and a couple of enormous swans just outside.  Food is important here too. The beers were:
  • Moorhouses Pride of Pendle.
  • Black Sheep Bitter.
  • Tetley Bitter.
  • Tetley Mild.
3. The Hop Vine, Burscough: a pub in the heart of Burscough with a brewery attached:  Burscough Brewery is in outhouses at the back.  Nicely refurbished from the dump that used to be the Royal Coaching Houses, this pub is noted for its food.  The beers being served were:
  • Burscough Mere Blonde.
  • Burscough Hop Vine.
  • Burscough Ringtail.
  • Phoenix Pale Moonlight.
  • Titanic Anchor.
  • George Wright Cheeky Pheasant.
  • Thwaites Wainwright.
4. The Ship (Blood Tub), Lathom:  this is another canalside pub with food and a real fire, and it has a lot of character.  A few years ago, I arranged a social afternoon here with union friends from Manchester and Merseyside.  Having extolled the delights of this canalside pub, I found on the day that the banks had burst, so my visitors could only gaze on a deep muddy ditch.
  • Thwaites Original.
  • Cross Bay Dusk Ruby Bitter.
  • Cross Bay Winter Moon. Prospect Venus Gold.
  • Moorhouses Pendlewitches Brew.
  • Moorhouses Ship Special.
5. The Blue Mallard, Burscough:  a restaurant located at Burscough Wharf, a canalside development in the town centre. I didn't get there on this trip, but I was told it was selling:
  • Lancaster Blonde.
This was on when I called in there a few months ago. Price: £2.80 a pint, and £1.65 a half.

6.  The Bridge, Burscough:  another one I didn't visit.  It was selling:
  • Moorhouses Pride of Pendle.
  • Black Sheep Bitter.
7. Ring O' Bells, Lathom:  this canalside pub has been nicely refurbished after a period of closure. It is also a food pub. An interesting range of beers was available:
  • Thwaites Nutty Black.
  • Thwaites Original.
  • Prospect Panned Out.
  • Liverpool Organic 24 Carat Gold.
  • George Wright Blonde Moment.
8. Hesketh Arms, Rufford:  a large food-oriented pub on the main road from Ormskirk to Preston (the A59).
  • Moorhouses Pride of Pendle.
  • Tetley Bitter.
  • Jennings Cumberland.
  • Lancaster Straw.
  • Phoenix Pale Moonlight.
9. Cock & Bottle, Tarleton:  a large ex-GBG pub in the centre of the village, again food-oriented.  Real fire.  The range was from Thwaites, and it was the dearest beer on the trip, with Wainwright at £3.15 a pint.
  • Thwaites Original.
  • Thwaites Wainwright.
  • Thwaites Nutty Black.
10. The Village Inn, Tarleton:  a few minutes' walk from the Cock & Bottle, this pub was serving food and had a real fire.  A pleasant final destination for our tour.
  • Wells Bombardier.
  • Holts Bitter.
  • Marston's Pedigree.

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