This week has seen a few lunch time pub trips and a stop over in Haworth post Santa Train for a couple of beers. Venues I’d normally not visit, it’s good to have a bit of variety before I inevitably return to my usual haunts. I also popped into Libertine, Mytholmroyd with a friend for a few hours last Wednesday night.
I’ve discussed the loss of pubs in Sowerby Bridge recently, so it is interesting to revisit a venue that I’ve not attended in a long time. The Moorings has been around since I’ve lived in Calderdale and is a food led pub, their beer choice being from the Greene King camp or mainstream brands. On my visit only the Greene King IPA and Black Sheep were on, leaving Black Sheep the only option given I don’t drink Greene King beers. The beer was as expected, solid and uninteresting, however the food was better thankfully. The haddock fishcakes were very good and would be ordered again and my wife’s garlic mushrooms were nice. Staff were warm and welcoming, the large interior comfortable with nice wide views over the canal basin.
Just outside the Calderdale area I visited one of the Vintage Inns chain, the Hare and Hounds on the hills above Mirfield and Cooper Bridge. The menu is the same across the chain, but the real ale selection is better than the Moorings with Leeds Pale Ale and Abbeydale Moonshine on offer, the latter being my drink of choice over lunch. A regular at some of the area’s better real ale pubs it was in good condition, Moonshine is a nicely flavoured pale session ale from Sheffield. Onto the food, we shared garlic mushrooms and tomato flatbread, the mushrooms a touch salty, the bread hitting the spot nicely. Inside it’s large space is comfortable. I’ve visited this venue many times in the past with work and tried a good number of the dishes, none of which disappoint, but neither surprise.
Libertine in Mytholmroyd has changed into it’s winter Apre Ski guise and also celebrate their 1st birthday next weekend. Congratulations to the owners for setting up a nice chilled venue with a good range of real ales off their four paddles. On a quiet midweek night we took the warm spot in the back corner near the heater and enjoyed a few glasses of a new Great Heck pale session ale I’d not encountered (the name escapes me and isn’t listed on their website, brewery or pub). Throughout the night groups came back and forth keeping a nice atmosphere rolling. We also had to have a drink of Titanic Plum Porter, one of my favourite darker beers, one I don’t see enough in pubs. A good range of spirits and winter drinks only adds to the attraction. The effort has gone into the decor with walls, ceilings and exterior all suitably decorated.
The last pub this week is the Old White Lion in Haworth, a nice homely pub in the main square at the top of this tourist town. Split into a number of areas, some bar, some dining, it supports both type of customers nicely. Three real ales on the pump, a mix of mainstream and less known Yorkshire brewer including Goose Eye on this visit, although all well kept from the two beers I tried. a mix of family and drinking groups all co-existing nicely. There are a number of pubs in and around the Haworth main square including the Kings Arms and Black Bull, with the Fleece Inn further down the main street and the Old White Lion is on a par with them.
I am looking forwards to see old friends and old haunts over christmas as my health allows, I’ve still got a number of pubs I’ve to visit and report on and some revisits are well overdue. This year has been tough on me, but I’m pleased to have kept touch with some of my favourite venues despite this. We have a great set of pubs in Calderdale old and new, enjoy them Christmas and beyond as they deserve all the support we can give them.