This proposed canal tour of the Midlands with Pete and Mudgie is gathering pace after comments on my last post.
A fairly middle of the road canalside boozer in Branston sparked off the possibility and Stockport’s finest has virtually organised an itinerary of Stourbridge and Dudley canals with Pete as our less than sober helmsman.
(not Pete’s boat)
Of course, half the fun of #publife is making plans that don’t always come to fruition and many an idea was hatched in a bar that drifted, along a canal if you like, before disappearing until the next time.
Nonetheless, I am optimistic this will happen and the clincher will be if Pete promises to run a late night quiz at the nearest Ember Inn to a canal…
So, sticking with the canal theme, I visited an absolute classic last month that has won approval from none other than Colston Crawford.
410 – The Swan DE13 7DN is a classic in its genre and Derbyshire’s beer guru waxes lyrical about it here.
It’s a real hive of boating activity as it sits on Fradley Junction, which is where the Trent & Mersey Canal and the Coventry Canal meet at the Alrewas equivalent of New Street Station.
(one of those new filter pictures I know you all love)
Everards, who I like as both brewers and pub owners, revived this place seven years ago and it was in fantastic form when I visited.
It’s apparently been here since the 1770’s and it was packed at 5pm on a Monday with a real mixed bag of a crowd. There were punters outside overlooking this busy stretch of canal, two rooms inside were also full whilst the beer garden out the back had some real hardcore boat owners talking about the boozers and stretches of water in the Midlands.
There was another room downstairs but food wasn’t on at that time, so it was empty but I suspect it fills up too as this place is a gem.
I spoke to the gaffer, who was a Brummie and he had been running it for two years and was making a real go of things and the beer was absolute nectar.
Plum Porter was on but I opted for a top drop of Suffragette (Everards) which was a outstanding and watched the world go by on some quirky seating that really suited this place.
If you can imagine what an old school canalside boozer should be then you’re probably thinking of this place.
Of course, I’ll be suggesting to Pete we try out Mudgie’s route as there will be far more pubs on it and a lot less actual navigating yet this is arguably the best canal pub I’ve been to since I started blogging…