Friday 16 February 2018

The Phoenix, Southport

From Google street view
I had been to the Phoenix a few times for the live music so I recently decided it was about time that I wrote about this independent bar and restaurant that serves real ale. It is in Southport town centre on Coronation Walk, just yards from Lord Street and close to Southport Promenade. It is a large single room bar with separate drinking areas separated by arches, all lit by chandeliers overhead.

I was made welcome by the owner Chris and his friendly staff. It was only when I ordered my fourth pint that I found out that they have a discount for CAMRA members. My loss for the first three, but with the pints being very reasonably priced anyway, it was no great loss.

There is a changing range of up to four real ales; when I called in, they were Lancaster Brewery Citra, Weetwood Old Dog, Wily Fox Skylark Pale Ale and Brain's Rev James. I found the beers to be well-kept, and saw that they have Cask Marque certification for the quality of their beers.

A good range of the usual spirits, liqueurs and wines is supplemented by six specialist gins and six malt whiskies. Craft beer is represented by Sharp's Wolf Rock IPA and Maltsmiths Bavarian-style Pils. You can save a few bob during the Happy Hours on Thursdays and Fridays from 5.00pm to 9.00pm.

There are big TV screens for live sport; it was busy with sports fans when I called in, which is surely much better than sitting at home alone with a few tins of beer for company. The Phoenix also keeps music live by featuring prominent local bands twice a month. Sunday night is quiz night and on 22 February, they will be presenting a themed quiz night: Marvel versus DC, so dust down your superhero outfits! 

They are open until midnight every day except Saturday (1.00am). Food is available every day from midday (weekdays) and 10.00am (weekends) until 9.00pm.

Children are welcome here, and I saw a dog provided with a water bowl. They also have a darts board and pool table for their customers' use. There is free Wi-Fi, their website is here, and you can also find them on Facebook.

This is one of a series of articles that I write for the CAMRA column in our local papers, the Southport Visiter and the Ormskirk Advertiser. Previous reviews are here.