|Man from my train fails to enter pub. Loser.|
The Leopard, one of those "oh my god Si how have you not visited this pub before?" pubs looked splendid from the outside. Green tiling must be my favourite pub exterior along with cats and stuffed owls on spikes. Inside was immediately more underwhelming, not that I had chance to take it all in. The ales seemed to be missing and a barman (possibly Leo Fortune-West) seemed just as confused as me, told me a blackboard displaying them had gone walkabout. A more senior barman then asked if I was a "Rep" and when I told him no, just a CAMRA member, he got a bit sheepish and gave me 10% discount. Wish I'd have said yes to see what would have happened, but no doubt my Tim Taylor top was to blame. I decided to sit in the right hand room of the three (table tennis and pool in the back). As I "admired" the fake bookcase and listened to conversations like (a) "if poker is annoying you, don't get addicted, just give up" and (b) "How did you manage to buy a church by accident?", I read my Donny Drinker thinking this is quite a standard pub experience for Doncaster, especially when a Vietnamese bag lady appeared from nowhere. But then, "Whisky Steve" arrived. Oh dear! Once he'd ascertained I wasn't gay (he said he always checks, it's the one type of person he won't talk to), he sat with me, forever. Wish I'd said I was. He was amazed to learn I was 37 and not 12 years old. He compared himself to Einstein (when sober), told me he liked boobs, and then when a chap in a turban walked in, he chanted "I Sikh him here, I Sikh him there, I Sikh him everywhere". So embarrassed, I downed my Sharp's Atlantic, made my excuses and ran out as quickly as I could.
|Not much was going on at this stage .....|
|The calm before the whisky storm.|
Pre-Steve, the Donny Drinker had told me this was a pub of the season with it's Chantry ales and live music, so in need of a calmer experience(!), I headed down the hellhole that is Silver Street, all horrific bars and takeaways with scroats and skanks lining the streets, I'd been expecting some shiny metallic trendy bar full of uncomfortable posing tables, so to find quite a divey dark gig venue was quite a relief. The barman was of the enthusiastic, cheery ilk (like all bar staff in South Yorkshire towns, pleased to see anyone drinking ale). He asked me the old "What type of beers do you like?" question, I humoured him by saying "stout and porter" but it'd just gone off so rather than offering me the nearest fit, he sold me the lightest hoppiest beer on sale cos he liked it best! Bit too dry but the New York Pale at least reminded me of better pubs in Rotherham, I squashed into an incomprehensibly low settee as two unwashed old men chuckled about the warm weather and wives hanging their washing out (or something). The artwork was all Brewdog and Bowie. Ugh. Our barman kept checking on me & the state of the ale, calling me "duck" far more than was necessary - he must have moved from Derbys, he probably thought I was a rep too. The music was good, the place a bit dull, though just as I was leaving, "Go Now" by the Moody Blues started up which summed up just how welcome I felt in Donny tonight!
|Put "Tap" in front of a pub, and it might get in the GBG one day!|
|Empty moshing space|
|Top quality Chantry|
It was a relief when I got back to 'boring, no-one gives a shit about their fellow man' York.
Good Beer Guide 2017 out on Thursday, I will be back with a special blog so see ya then.