This might be this blog’s Rubicon moment (I think this is a reference to a river rather than a mango- flavoured soft drink usually found in the “World Foods” aisle of most supermarkets – incidentally, aren’t all foods technically “World Foods”? – just put “hard to find ingredients from expensive cookbooks, things written in polish and slightly cheaper chickpeas” and everything will be much clearer).
I’m going to review a Wetherspoon’s. I don’t think it’s been done before but I can’t be bothered checking through the website. Like it or not, Wetherspoon’s are pubs, and nobody can deny there absolute commitment to selling proper beer at what I’m guessing are closer to mid-90s prices (I was about ten so don’t actually know). It’s cheap, that’s what I’m trying to say.
The Stamford Post is the newest pub in Stamford, opening about 12 months ago. Stamford has lost 5-10 pubs over the last few years, the brilliantly named “Otters Pocket” among them, so despite this being a chain it’s great to have an additional option in town. Built on the site of the old Stamford Mercury printing house (the oldest continually printed paper in the UK), the interior has been kitted out to reflect the building’s history. Newspaper print tiles in the toilets (oddly written in German?),typewriters hanging from the walls and all that sort of stuff. It’s not going to win any style awards, but at least they’ve made an effort and it is distinguishable from other Wetherspoon’s pubs.
There are always loads of ales on at ridiculous prices, although they have started to follow this odd trend of having a very small little glass of the beer next to the pump. I think this is pretty helpful when making a selection – we’ve all been disappointed to have to wade through something more viscous than crude oil because we didn’t read the tiny writing saying “stout”. My beef is that I’m convinced this is to stop people asking for a taste before they order. If you see someone else engage in this tasting session, you’d call them a wanker. If you do it, it is the height of sophistication and you’ll probably make some comment about knowing your stuff / wanting to get something that will complement your Quavers.
I don’t mind this Wetherspoon’s. I actually don’t mind them generally. You go for a cheap pint, and that’s what you get so how can you complain. It’d be like to going to Tate Modern and whingeing because you didn’t have a good view of the pitch.
The problem I have with them is that you can get too wider cross section of people. Couples in never-ending games of whose baby can cry loudest, family people with kids and toys, old people paying for their two meals for £1.87 in five pences, LOUD NOISES, weird date people sipping orange squash out of straws, people just old enough to get served, people not quite old enough to get served, “lads”, shrieks of women that think inflatable cocks are fine whether there’s a hen-do or not, people that think they’re beer aficionados, and pretentious note-taking pub reviewers that just want everyone else to go away so that they can have a nice quiet, cheap pint.