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Thursday, May 6, 2010

God Save The Pubs

All is good. God saved the pubs.

Update: Jumping in Pools has more on the beer campaign.

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  1. The sun never sets on a good Brit pub. Had a favorite when we were in Wiltshire just after 9/11 (flew over practicing our stiff upper lips in the face of terror). Good food, good atmosphere and a trestle table around which we all sat almost swallowed up by the cavernous fireplace that dominated the room we were in. I think it was the Lamb Tavern. Interesting was one night they had a local wine and cheese demonstration. Some of the best cheeses don't make it to export so whenever you hit a European country with good cheese, have a look out for them. So fresh and tasty.

    Well, with our government's policies, there are few places left to travel safely and less money available to do it on. Ah, the good old days of NATO in Paris - hamburgers at the PX compliments of an Army Brat. Hot Fudge sundaes at Le Drugstore on the Champs Elysees and the Froggy Frenchies trying to short change you all the way to the airport - the only tough thing with which you would deal. But that is their role and they play it well. French wine is le ne plus ultra so they are forgiven.

    Life was good. Ah, but back to the pubs. Only in a pub can you manage bubble and squeak or bangers and mash. This is why there is no longer a British Empire - their food. I'm sure when they conquered a country the natives would be heard to complain - no, no, get away with you and take your food with you. No wonder the Pilgrims invited the Indians and their food for dinner just as soon as they landed and the gift of good food is the real meaning behind Thanksgiving.

  2. Here's the latest on the viability of the pub in Britain from TimesOnline.co.uk

    My favourite story of this cold winter is the one about the 60 guests who got snowed in over the new year at the Tan Hill Inn, Britain’s highest pub, 1,732ft above sea level in the Yorkshire Dales. What tickled me was not that everyone mucked in peeling potatoes, cleaning lavatories and holding up the bar while Tracy Daly, the landlady, rescued motorists from drifts, nor that the guests appeared so reluctant to be rescued when the roads were opened three days later, but that this was clearly a story that captured the public imagination because of our love affair with the pub.

    With 50 pubs closing every week you would think that love affair was well and truly over. We are living through a time of unprecedented disaster for the public house, something that foreigners think is culturally and architecturally unique to Britain. The question is whether we care — I think we do — and whether there is anything we can do to save those centres of community life before they slide into oblivion.

    The great paradox of our time is that the decline of the British pub has been going on over the same period as the rise in alcohol abuse detailed in the report on alcohol by the Commons health select committee, published last week

    read the rest at:http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/comment/columnists/guest_contributors/article6982324.ece