I often wax lyrical about the Ember Inns chain on this blog and in Brum, and its surrounding suburbs, I reckon they are still a Godsend.
Often the last bastions of cask in many Solihull/Birmingham suburbs, they are still very much ‘local boozers,’ which I know isn’t always the case in other better served, pubbier regions.
There is the added bonus of the blogging world’s very own quizmaster, Pete Allen, who also delivers quizzes at three Embers in Brum in between locking horns with fellow canal boat users on the Birmingham/Fazeley canal!!
Anyway, I’ll get to the point in a minute (hurry up I hear you ask) and stop number three on our Number 11 Ale Trail saw us take in an Ember Inn on the edge of Kings Heath.
579 – The Red Lion B14 7LY is an eye catching Grade II listed, Neo-Gothic building on Vicarage Road. Just in case you’re not sure where, here is one of those helpful maps, that Martin likes, which shows you the route so far.
(Great Western – Billesley – Red Lion)
It was early Friday afternoon but clearly a few lads had knocked off already as there was a cracking table of comedians behind us who had identified a bloke in an ill-fitting cycling lycra suit as their source of fun (albeit, just amongst themselves)
“F*** me, the cabaret act has arrived,” was one comment as the bloke tottered around on his cycling shoes.
“Is that lycra f*****g painted on,” was another morsel of acerbic wit and the general consensus was “why?”
However, as this is a family blog, I can’t show you pictures of the MAMIL for obvious reasons.
The beer patio was full, there was reasonable trade inside as well, and this place was doing well, which is great to see.
I followed the one way system to the bar and big John was warming up and we both had a cracking pint of Twilighter IPA (Black Sheep).
Conversation consisted of The Housemartins debut album, Birmingham City’s squad strength (or not) for next season and listening to the table of blokes behind, who appeared to know everyone inside and outside the boozer.
(I think Flag Day was the best song…)
Apparently, there is a long standing folk club that has been running at the Red Lion for years on a Wednesday evening but, at present, is mothballed due to covid.
A good half an hour was spent at one of the most picturesque pubs in this part of Brum and it is great to see it thriving.
Not sure why M&B bother with Vintage Inns as Ember is a far better style of chain and infinitely more relaxed.
I would definitely recommend this place and it could only be improved by getting Pete on the roster as their very own Bob Holness for their quiz night (I still accept cheques, Pete).
One last check of the man in lycra with his better half was order of the day before heading off to the closest bus stop.