Friday, July 8, 2011

No. 65 The Custom House

Visited on 7/7/11. Back in the bad old days before the micro-brewery movement had gained any traction, ‘the Custom House’ was a dependable old school boozer where you were always guaranteed a decent pint – and a decent atmosphere as well to boot. The modernisation which has taken place since then hasn’t enhanced the place to any great extent, but nor has it ruined it. They’ve made better use of the space around the back I suppose, and most importantly they’ve kept the small room (not really a snug) at the front. Also, there’s a much wider choice of ales available now, although admittedly, they’re all still from the Marston’s stable - Marston’s Pedigree, Marston’s EPA (see ‘Fat Cat’), Jennings Cumberland ale, Jennings Cocker Hoop and Wychwood Hobgoblin all being present. Between us we tried the lot - apart from the EPA obviously. They were all in good nick an’ all, with the Cocker Hoop probably coming out on top. This place might have lost some of it’s character, but it remains an oasis of traditional pub culture in a city centre street that’s increasingly becoming a wine bar quarter. We’ll get to the more ‘clubby’ establishments at a later date no doubt …might have to wear cravats. 

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