Saturday, 21 June 2014

The Freshfield - twice as POTY

The Freshfield in Formby recently managed the remarkable achievement of being presented with two CAMRA Pub of the Year (POTY) awards in one evening: for Southport and West Lancs and for Merseyside.

The Freshfield, Massams Lane
The first thing you see when you go in is a row of 14 hand pumps serving a wide range of beer from all over the country, including local beers, so we found Burscough and Liverpool Organic beers sharing bar space with St Austell from Cornwall and Hawkshead from Cumbria. The several beers I had were all well kept. The pub also stocks a craft keg beer: Brewdog Punk IPA.

The pub was extensively refurbished two years ago: the front area is undeniably a pub, but you can walk through to the large, attractive restaurant to the rear where good, reasonably-priced meals are served until 10pm. They’ve tried quiz nights and live music, but found them unnecessary. In general, I've usually found there a comfortable and relaxed buzz of conversation here. A darts team plays on Mondays.

The Freshfield has two beer festivals each year in January and July: the next one is 21 to 27 July and will feature more than 100 real ales (including two from the new Parker Brewery in Formby), craft beers and ciders, plus live music and food. It's in Massams Lane, less than 10 minutes walk from Freshfield station.

This is part of a series of articles that I am writing for the CAMRA column in our local paper, the Southport Visiter. Previous reviews are here.

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