Skip to main content

A Poet & Hack Christmas

The wise men of the pub blogging world tell us that it is most unwise to venture into the public house at this time of year, when the 'once a year' brigade, take over the place with their loud Christmas jumpers and competitive conversations comparing the size of their Christmas bonuses...

...when admission on Christmas and New Years Eves is by ticket only, for the customer's 'elf and safety' of course, and most of your beer is spilled down your (or someone else's) front in the rugby scrum at the bar....

...by the look of their most recent pre-Christmas posts, the wise pub men know what they're talking about...

What better antidote to this could there be, than to take a short walk down the garden path from the hermitage to the pub shed local, The Poet & Hack...

...one day all micro-pubs will look like this...
The peace and tranquility of the snug, is a rare atmosphere, very much in keeping with the true meaning of Christmas (no it's not a stable), but not often found in the noise of Christmas' modern interpretation.

The traditional bench seats are provided for the comfort of the locals, with essential cushion accessories...

...proper bench seat with cushion
...the beer tray on the corner table declares the past triumphs of Wards Ales...

Sheffield's finest...

...the old mantel clock ticks quietly until it's gongs split the silence on the half hour and hour...

...silence...about to be split....

...the quiet fizz as the vintage cast bottle opener is applied to the cap of Furze Dale Brewery's Christmas Ale...with its warming spices and 8% of alcohol by volume, which gives the locals a healthy glow and steams the windows of the snug...

...scandal inevitable as Shepherd Neame claim credit for Christmas Ale...
...and classic reading material is available to while away an hour or two...

...pub shed essential reading...

...the Christmas shelf decorations give a tasteful nod to the season and the old Christmas traditions...

...just an average York street scene at Christmas...

...as the toy seller tells the father what a fine present the wooden steam engine will make for his son...

...it'll do Edinburgh to London in 4 hours, Guv...

...and the chestnut seller hands his bag of steaming hot nuts to the young boy....

...before Piper's crisps were invented...
...and people rush for home with Christmas presents....

Si (in Hull City scarf) rushes home with his Christmas present of green highlighters....

...and the lights flicker in the little 'putz house' church and the sound of carols waft out over the cold night air...

putz church...

...some fine examples of the 'Spirit of Life' tempt the locals to have a nightcap (or two), before setting off home...

not an optical illusion...

...and the 35 year old bottle of Yugoslavian Sljivovica, still waits patiently for the opportunity to sear the throat of the unwary/reckless...

...throat stripper...

...and no snug bar would be 'albright' without it's red triangle...

...red triangle...all bright ain't it....

...and the Poet & Hack spares no effort to bring you the finest bar snacks (though the local squirrel population may have a hard winter this year)...

...squirrel's emergency rations...

...Sir John's 1954 poem of Christmas with 'gels in slacks' and 'oafish louts', and the true meaning of Christmas, springs to mind as he looks down from his photo collage approvingly, on this little piece of eccentric old England...

Sir John...'poet and hack'...

...the last drop of Christmas Ale is drained...



...and all is well with the world...

Merry Christmas from The Poet & Hack




Comments

  1. Save me some of that Yugoslavian stuff for my trip to the Isle of Wight !

    Happy Christmas !

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Ha ha ! Definitely. The kind of robust drink that is essential for any voyage of discovery to the lost island.

      Happy Christmas Martin !

      Delete
  2. 'Tis the season indeed. And in the spirit of things I shall refrain from making any double entendres (i.e. steaming hot nuts) or point out any grammatical errors (hint: those darn apostrophes!).

    I won't even do my usual cut and paste... but I will partake of a few bullet points:

    - a winter ale (of at least 8%) is de rigueur. I have a 330ml bottle of Delirium Christmas (10%) waiting patiently in my fridge

    - whilst the reading material covers an adequate range, I do believe one book on beer should be in there somewhere

    - the note (and accompanying figurine) on Si with his Hull city scarf and green highlighters was classic! Well done! (LOL)

    - with regards to the squirrel emergency rations I'd be inclined to have some outside as well. One of my wife's sisters was evacuated this summer due to forest fires. She returned home this past week; only to find one lone squirrel had managed to get in, couldn't get back out, and tore the house apart! ;)

    Oh, and I would consider it an hour to pop by the Shed local if I ever find myself in the vicinity. :)

    Merry Christmas!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Steaming hot nuts and apostrophes - what do you mean..? He says innocently... ;)

      Don't forget to be sitting down when you partake of the Christmas Delirium juice...

      You're right about the reading material - will look to get that one sorted...

      Next year's Christmas shelf montage may be completely in the theme of pub ticking, starring all the famous characters....

      Good grief - I've heard of Squirrel Nutkin but Rambo Squirrel is a new one on me, just putting a few outside now (at a safe distance...)

      You'll be most welcome at the Poet & Hack - I don't think we;re on any coach or package tour itineraries yet - but just call in anytime you're passing by...

      :)

      Cheers Russ - Merry Christmas!

      Delete

Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

Five Find a Lost Island Pt 5 - The End of the Great Adventure

Darkness was drawing in, as our FOF adventurers left the Cowes Ale House, making it even more difficult to find the lost Island of Wight...

...and the next pub....


...luckily the Painters Arms was just across the street so Julian didn’t need his island map or to log into Google Maps.

The pub was a nice building, but there must have been something about it that made the FOFs wary. Fortunately we had a professional decorator in our midst and everyone agreed he was just the right man to do a quick recce.

Unfortunately the Painters didn’t meet his expectations and so we moved on...



The next pub also posed something of a dilemma as there seemed to be a fairly unusual admissions policy in force...
...after a brief assessment of the situation, and quickly eliminating the other options, Julian felt there was a chance we could pass ourselves off as children, especially as it was getting dark...

...so making ourselves look as small as possible (except for Timmy who’s small already) we entered…

King’s Crown...

My Winchester wander continued, past another vacant pub...




...and Handy Villas....

...to the Winnall Industrial Estate  and a visit to the Red Cat Brewing Co. where I did my CAMRA Brewery Liaison Officer bit, catching up with recent developments etc.  The day’s winter beer theme continued with a half of their award winning Mr M’s Porter, which was very good.

And that’s as good as it got today - I should have stayed there and sampled some more ’never boring' Red Cat beers, but a pub blogger's job just isn’t that easy, and there were other pubs to visit.
It was a nice sunny day and back in the centre of Winchester,  I looked for somewhere to eat my ‘homemade’ lunch.  Thinking the quadrangle area in front of the Cathedral would be a nice peaceful and aesthetic location, I was disappointed to find it had been turned into a building site as the contractors were in the process of dismantling the temporary Christmas ice skating rink. 
Finally I found a bench in Abbey Gardens, and wi…

Five Find a Lost Island - Pt 1 Ferry to the Fountain

On an unusually warm October day, the sun baked down from a clear azure sky as their red boat raced through the waves...




"Look" said Dick excitedly, "There it is -we're here at last - we've found it!"
And he pointed to the cluster of masts of expensive sailing boats in the harbour, as the ferry approached the jetty.

"It didn't take us long to find it" said George* dubiously, underwhelmed at the lack of adventure on their 20 minute Red Jet ride from Southampton. "Is it really a lost island?"

"I think so", said Julian, as he climbed off the ferry, though if it was, he couldn't help wondering why so many other people seemed to have discovered it on the same day. "At least the famous adventurer Retired Martin says it is lost and he's usually right."

"There's the museum!" said Timmy*, running ahead to a large building at the entrance to the jetty, "It's called The Fountain Inn.  Is that becaus…