Tuesday 27 August 2019

Nobody Home in Liverpool

A random City Centre selection of visits started at the Fly in the Loaf:
No change in here since my last visit back in 2008, and nothing to contradict my notes about a lack of atmosphere, because there was only me and the barman in.  I'm surprised they don't do better than this at one on a Tuesday, perhaps everyone is partied out after the Bank Holiday.

Obviously, I had to have Okell's Bitter from the selection of handpumps, it was spot on.  The barman busied himself putting out menus (The food looks good value for central Liverpool.) and sorting behind the counter, while I sat alone and enjoyed my ale.
Someone cleared his throat.  No one left and no one came.
(Adlestrop, Edward Thomas)
As an aside, I think I've learned something here: I usually spell it "no-one".  Of course, one could ask, if "someone" is correct, why isn't it "noone"?

Hmmm.  Fly in the Loaf Est 1927 says the sign on the bar front.  I'm guessing that's the bakery 'cos I know it isn't the bar.

Finally the quiet was broken by the chef who came out for a chat with the barman.  I don't think my pint will pay their wages!

Next, the Flute:
I first came in here when it was the Flute and Firkin, back in 1999.  The post-firkin incarnation is a rather well done large open room with a wooden floor.  Umpteen TV screens provide various sports, mostly horse racing this afternoon.

One barman and four customers here, it's doing slightly better than the Fly!

Only one handpump in operation, I decided not to risk it and went for lager instead.

The signing of the gents leaves a little to be desired.  Luckily for me one of the other customers did a tour of the room and then asked the barman, so I knew where to go when it was my turn.

On to the Hope and Anchor:
Oh dear.  Two staff and me.  Where is everyone?  This student-oriented place has fun attractive decor, all it needs is some students.

No real ale, so I had a half of something very tasty from Brewdog.  But it was way too warm.

Two more people appeared, but they turned out to be more staff, possibly one was an interviewee.

Actually, I've no idea what a student in 2019 wants in a bar, and I didn't even like student bars when I was one all those years ago - My favourite drinking hole then was a traditional street corner boozer.  So I use the phrase student-oriented from a position of ignorance.  I'm guessing a place like this is hanging on for a sudden flood of custom at the end of September when term starts.  Perhaps it'll be packed in freshers week (Do they still have that?)

As I finished my beer, one of the staff set to painting some furniture.

Where next?  I wasn't expecting any new ticks today but hang on, what's this?  The Casa Bar.  How many times have I walked past?  Sorry, I forgot to take a picture.

I'm not sure why I've never been in here before, I think I had some idea it was a restaurant or something, but in fact it's a pub plain and simple.  No real ale so I had Guinness for a change.

This was busy compared with all the previous ticks, with about twenty customers adding chatter to the background music.

A staircase leads to the cellar bar, but I didn't venture down to check it out.  No one went down or came up while I was there.

Rather unusually for 2019, the pub has multiple signs advising that it is cash only.  I wonder if anyone comes in and then leaves because cards are no good;  probably not very often.

The holiday weather is over, it's raining, but just across the road is the wonderful world famous Philharmonic:
What can I say that hasn't already been said?  An architectural gem, one of the most beautiful pubs in the world, and quite busy with tourists as you would expect.

I selected a stout from the array of handpumps, and it was superb.

I sat in Liszt, I don't think I've used this room before, with a wonderful stained glass window in front of me; "Music is the Universal Language of Mankind - Longfellow".

Next, another chance to tick off a never before visited bar, up a back street resisting the temptation of the wonderful Roscoe Head and on to the Scholar:
Back to the tumbleweeds again, just me and the barmaid in this rather nicely decorated one room pub which I guess is aimed at the student market.  Presumably it'll be busier once the term starts.

Finally, time to check a new sighting - Grand Central, the former Methodist hall, now has Smokie Mo's neons over the doorway.  But it's not actually open on a Tuesday afternoon.  So on to the beloved Crown:
It's always difficult to photograph this pub without getting run over, especially when it's at the end of a seven pub crawl, so the photo is from 2002.
Once again, what can I say that hasn't already been said?  Well, the new arrangement with an extra side door into the front room also features a re-shuffled counter, the real ales are now in one row in the middle, there used to be two groups of handpumps with keg fonts and a till in between.

I headed for my preferred seat in the back room.  The pub was doing nicely, with plenty of customers, mostly eating.  What hasn't changed is the quality of the real ale, my pint of, er, I've forgotten what - something pale and hoppy, was excellent.

Pub of the day: Jointly the Crown and the Phil.
Miles walked: 1.5

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