A day out

A nice little day out on the highways and byways of Lancashire. From isolated, comfy, country pubs, to industrial town centre boozers, there’s a great variety in this county. Highlights included: the first stop at the Derby Arms in Aughton. This is a cosy, welcoming, free house that seems to do a good trade in food. Hanby’s All Seasons (4.2%) was light and undemanding, but where were the Cascade hops that it’s allegedly brewed with?

The Dolphin at Longton is an excellent, two roomed, country lane boozer, that was understandably quiet mid afternoon. A smart, long, bar dominates the main room, and offers a choice of 5 ales. Having tried it recently at the brewery, I was curious to give George Wright Blonde Moment (4%) another try. Interestingly, it proved even better than the sample at the brewery. Here it was fully matured, and was very perfumery. I found it very quenching even without the usual hop bite I would normally associate with their beers. Another winner, methinks.

The Original Farmers Arms at Eccleston is well renowned for its food, and anywhere were you get proper tartar sauce gets my vote. Unfortunately, Titanic Steerage (3.5%) was very poor. The aroma gave nothing away, but burnt malt soon came to the fore, followed by a metallic astringency that was very unpleasant. Having paid for it, I struggled gamely with it for half a pint, before admitting defeat. Also disappointing was the last stop at the Spinners at Adlington. A good choice of beers, but I fear I made the wrong decision-again. Plumping straight for Hop Back Spring Zing (4.2%) on the basis it would have some bite; I was to be confounded again. This was a reasonable pint, but was slightly too malty for this style, and lacked the crispness I was expecting.

This is just a brief summary of some of the pubs in West Lancashire. There is an all dayer coming up shortly, after which a more thorough report (I hope), will be forthcoming.


Derby Arms is a cracking pub, the licensee used to have the Red House, which were my local as a lad, and we were very upset when he moved on

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