Our first stop was the Queens Head in Congleton. Still retaining its traditional build of separate rooms with separate entrances, it offered an interesting selection of beers. One that caught the eye immediately was from new Cheshire microbrewer Merlin. Their Wizard was golden and generously hopped. It proved a favourite throughout the day and showed that sometimes micros can get it right from the start.
Next stop was an extended stay in Congleton proper. The Lord Mountbatten offered a good selection of local ales (more Merlin beers here), and the Counting House was an impressive Wetherspoons. Impressive with a very smart interior, an outdoor area, and still managing to be only £1.89 a pint. Oh, and they were having an Ossett festival-alongside Oakham Inferno-so plenty of excellent beer.
A quick stop at the Lodge in Alsager before our final pub calls in Sandbach. The Lower Chequer dates from 1570, and is believed to be the oldest building in town. Once again we had a good selection to choose from and we soon reacquainted ourselves with the landlord.
Hearing that the nearby Old Hall had recently reopened as a Brunning & Price outlet, the Don and I paid a visit. As to be expected from B&P, they have done an excellent job on it, and this Grade 1 listed building was well worth the visit. Six beers were on offer, including an excellent Titanic Iceberg. It was £3.30 a pint, but then, hey, you are in Cheshire.
The debauchery continued in Bury as we were led astray by Eddie, the eager, legal beagle. But it’s probably best I draw a veil over that in a family-friendly blog such as this.