By the second week, I’ve given up on most places listed in the guides like The Malt Shovel as there are rules against kids even in their mid-teens coming into some pubs that have me befuddled. I never inquired so I might be entirely wrong about the place. Some pubs like The Ship Inn in North Berwick are good for families until 8 pm. Others like The Abbotsford on Rose Street in Edinburgh are fine with the family upstairs in the restaurant but not downstairs in the bar. One Wetherspoons had so many rules (give the man your table number and your pint may arrive in twenty minutes… but only if you are in that room with the 14 year old) that I thanked them and left. Fortunately common sense reigns at the Old Clubhouse in Gullane where Timothy Taylor flows even if through a sparkler. Up there with The Holyrood 9A as best stops so far.
The Ship Inn was all sparklers, too. The pub sat in a dark red sandstone building on corner a few blocks back from the shore, tenament style, apartments upstairs, established 1895. Big windows and a few picnic tables out front under shady tree… well, shady when it’s not raining. Inside, dark wood and comfortable leather benches and arm chairs. Friendly service but they appeared to have never conceived of hot chocolate and Baileys. It was, you know, raining. It was remarked upon a few times by the staff. Said they would add it to the drinks list. Being Canadian seems a natural thing, having eight months of winter and all. Three hand pulls of local beers along with ten or so taps, mainly from larger breweries. Large selection of bottles, mirrored shelves. Open central space by bar. Tip jar. Tipping is interesting. Neither encouraged or refused. Asked in a few places and consensus is 10% is appreciated but not expected or demanded. Uncle and I both agreed upon the Broughton IPA – which came in at 5.5% even if on sparkler. Creamy mouthfeel, pronounced chewy hops.
That’s all for now. The train is approaching the sunny Clyde the noo.