Real Ale

Real Ale Map Updates & Scrawling Home

With the addition of the Pen Factory on Hope Street and the reinvigorated James Monro on Tithebarn Street I've had to update the maps on the Real Ale Liverpool website:

Pub Map 1 copy

Liverpool Maps 2 copy

And I am going to try and upload a beery blog once a fortnight on the Scrawling Home site:

Liverpool Beer Festival - Ale List

Looking forward to the Liverpool Beer Festival at the Crypt, which starts tomorrow.

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Here is a prettified version of the Beer List from the CAMRA website. Handily fits on to 10 pages (or 5 if you want to save the environment and can mess about with your Print setup).

Beer List Button

New Beery Scrawls

I've had a busy week on the scrawlinghome blog. Following a great weekend at the Caledonia last week I then went on to volunteer at the Liverpool Organic Brewery Beer Festival in Liverpool city centre. The week has therefore led me to write the following three blogs;

Hope you like them!

IMG_7796 - Version 2

Another New Blog!

On Friday whilst looking for blog site names for someone else I came across a nice name for a blog, which no one had taken, so I decided to snaffle it - despite having this website (which I update using Rapidweaver on my Macbook Pro) and another wordpress site (to be used for story writing when not having access to my macbook).

With my fondness for writing and real ale I thought "
Scrawling Home" sounded a great name for an ale blog, so hey presto! Unlike this website, which I need my computer to update, I can update the Scrawling Home site on the hoof with the Wordpress blog app on the phone. Neat!

So charting pubs, ales and crawls whilst on them is very much possible.

Feel free to check it out! So far it has a couple of days from Liverpool and Southport on it...


Wilson Potter & The Baum

Yesterday the Liverpool branch of CAMRA took a trip out east to Middleton and Rochdale. A few nice hours were spent at Wilson Potter Brewery somewhere hidden away in a Middleton industrial estate. First time I've ever had any of their ales. Tried a few - at £2 a pint why not?

Wilson Potter Brewery, Middleton

  • In the Black;
  • Ruby Red;
  • Bon Don Doon;
  • In Shreds.

Bon Don Doon was my favourite, the Ruby Red was nice, but not quite enough to grab me In the Black.


After leaving the brewery bar it was time for a rush to join the 'dewatering' queue (not just a geological term you know) and then head out in to a massive thunderstorm for the short hop to Rochdale to visit the Baum.

After the lightening all thirty or so of us headed in to the current CAMRA pub of the year -
The Baum. I'd visited here a couple of years ago before going to a Rochdale game (Rochdale v Charlton) with one of my EFW buddies. The staff were both plentiful and very friendly and their service was good and efficient. Our hosts Simon and Heidi were most welcoming. So along with a fair mix of ales I was a happy soul - I really enjoyed the Hop Angeles but the Yellow Dwarf was a little disappointing.

Ales and sample jars at the Baum

I liked the little colour bottles for showing of the appearance of the beer. Neat.

The Liverpool fans among us were disappointed that we couldn't watch the football there, but we didn't want to leave to go to a poorer pub to watch the game. A few us huddled around my iPhone with the SkyGo on it, unfortunately - whatever the size of the screen - it was a disappointing result.

It was the Halloween Cider & Perry Festival at the Baum

Would have liked to have stayed for a couple more at the Baum, but the coach can't wait all night.

Anyway cracking service, fine ales, good vibe - all that a pub should be. Should be winning awards this place.

Waterloo Beer Festival

After working at the St George's Hall Beer Festival last month for Liverpool Organic Brewery I have volunteered to work at the Waterloo Beer Festival on Thursday and Friday this week. Lots of lovely ale and no doubt some nice pies and cheese - and a really lovely venue too! Looking forward to it.


Hull Pub Map

After the Liverpool CAMRA visit to Hull last week I've popped a map together which you could find useful if you fancy an ale or two in the town centre.

I was pleasantly surprised by Hull. You may be too.

Hull Button

Rugby Real Ale Map

Went to Rugby with the Liverpool CAMRA branch trip this weekend and took the opportunity to go to a few public houses, down some beers and take some photos. So of course I've also had the chance to put some photos in with a new mapped walk.

As ever I've selected ten. There are some very good pubs among them and if you can only do half of those I'd recommend not missing:

  • The Victoria,
  • Seven Stars,
  • Squirrel,
  • Merchants and
  • Raglan.

William Webb Ellis

Rugby Button
Rugby Pub Map


Sunshine & camping at Bishop's Castle

Had a fabulous couple of nights camping at the Daisy Bank camp site about 3.5 miles walk from Bishop's Castle. The site itself was geared up mainly for camper vans and caravans, but was brilliant and I thoroughly recommend it.

After setting up the tent on Friday night we walked into Bishop's Castle across the fields and up over the hill, on a not exactly well trodden path. Thanks to the OS map, a lifeline!

Had a few pints in the Three Tuns and the Boars Head before getting the only taxi back to the campsite - a Latvian guy.

The walk the next day from 10am was a little harder work with the sun making it that bit sweatier. But we got there in the same time and after a late breakfast/early lunch and several pints of water it was time for some of ales on the real ale trail festival. The two CAMRA buses arrived from Liverpool carrying 85 enthusiastic thirsty scousers. Never seen a Liverpool trip with so many knees on show. Shorts and pints all around.

Tremendous Mediterranean weather meant there were (slow) races to any shade that could be found. It was hard work, but worth it. Bishop's Castle festival is always a cracking day out.

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Only downside was the Latvian guy was booked up until 2.15am and so we had to walk back to the campsite along the two A roads. It was scary enough with bends, no lighting and no pavements, but when we found there was a motor rally on at midnight it was pure scary adrenaline! (obviously we made it…).

Bishop's Castle

For several years this weekend always used to be T in the Park for my mates and me. The music there was always really good there. But after several years of trouble at the event, culminating with one of my friends having his ticket nicked and having to go home after half a day, this weekend is now always Bishop's Castle for the real ale festival. Basically swopped troublesome 'wegies and Buckfast tonic bottles for real ale and hog roast baps. Wonderful.

In the past I've always gone down for the Saturday with the coach(es) run by Liverpool CAMRA, but this year for the first time I is going down camping for the weekend! Looking forward for a day and a night of beer and a Sunday recovery stroll in the Shropshire hills. Offa's Dyke? The Ridgeway? Castles, castles, castles?

Whatever, with the weather and beer forecast so good it should be a fab weekend.
2011 at the Castle Hotel in Bishop's Castle



St Helens Pub Crawl

After putting together the two Liverpool walks I've produced one for nearby St Helens. It's a nice cheap place to have a pint with prices between £1.95 and £2.50 a pint!

It's not a Liverpool, York or Ludlow but it's worth an afternoon.

Click on this for the St Helens Crawl Map

Fine Fyne Fest Festival

Arrived at Fyne Fest at 2pm after the couple of days in Glasgow. Nice drive. And nice to see that the Rest and Be Thankful was open this time!

Set up the tent pretty quickly and was with Jarl in no time!


Sunshine day!

The beers on offer (£1.60 for a half) were all gorgeous. Lots of IPAs and Pale Ales and a few stouts for me. A very happy boy.

The music at the festival was top draw too. Shooglenifty got the whole tent dancing, even me! Okay, it may have been the Jaipur that got me dancing.

Fyne Fest!!

20 Months or so I happened upon Cairndow on the sad occasion of going to my uncle's funeral in Campbeltown. Cairndow was the home of Fyne Ales and I knew I'd go back at some point. It so happens that I was to be up in Scotland for the Neil Young gig in Glasgow on Thursday, so it was providential that their annual FyneFest festival on the banks of Loch Fyne is the same week.

So I've booked a ticket for the festival including camping! Will be my first camping trip of at least four this year, with Glastonbury two weeks later, Bishop's Castle beer festival and End of the Road Festival too. Beer and music. Great combinations without a football in sight!

The Fyne Fest Angus with a pint of Jarl, probably

Liverpool Pub Walk #2

After updating the first of the two pub walks yesterday I've managed to finish the second one too. This one covers the central area of the city centred around the area between St George's Hall and the Town Hall along and near to Dale Street.

Some of the pubs are obvious choices like the Ship, Lion and Rigby's, some of the others could arguably be changed for alternates. So feel free to mix and match with the others in the list. There are plenty of Wetherspoon's in the area for instance and on any given day they may have some good beers on, at their usual more than competitive prices. That said the service in several of these are less than satisfactory at the moment.

One pub which hasn't made my walks but could easily be added to either is the Baltic Fleet. This is partly because of it's position, out on a bit of limb. I'd certainly recommend going in for one or two there, particularly if you are in the area visiting the Albert Dock or the Echo Arena.

The pubs I've put in are:
Ship, Vernon, Lion, Rigby's, Hole, Keys, Exchange, Cornmarket, White Star, Globe.
Could equally have been; Ship, Excelsior, Lion, Rigby's, Hole, Pig, Star, Richmond, Fall Well, Globe


Click on this see the walk (pdf format)

Liverpool Pub Walk #1

Have updated one of the two pub walks I developed a few years ago. This one covers ten decent real ale pubs from the area between Peter Kavanagh's and the Dispensary. I've put in the Grapes on Roscoe Street, but it is closed at the moment - it should re-open in the coming few weeks, hopefully.

The pubs:

Peter Ks; Cali; Bel; Phil; Fly; Pilgrim; Cracke; Grapes; Roscoe; Dizzy.

Click on this see the walk (pdf format)

Liverpool Beer Fest

Had a great time last week at the Liverpool Beer Festival as ever. Lots of fab IPAs and Stouts. Highlight though? Grabbing the photo opportunity with John Aldridge. Class and a Glass!

Today off to Wigan Beer Festival. Only photo opportunity expected is with a pie.