In athletics it’s all about personal bests. Pub ticking is much the same only more athletic. But 38 days without ticking a new pub was a personal worst, so it was with some relief that I knocked off a few more Good Beer Guide pubs in Derbyshire at the weekend.
The drought ended in the Miner’s Arms, Hundall, a lovely place that smelt a little of dogs. No wonder when they have their own cask ale.
Such was my state of delirium I forgot to record what I had to drink. Onwards to Matlock and following in the recent and steep footsteps of Martin Taylor up Bank Road to Stanley’s Alehouse, pictured above.
The photograph is supposed to illustrate (1) the breathlessly hot day (2) the gradient (3) the terrific industrial setting and a slightly distant (4) the pub itself.
The pub is on Smedley Street. John Smedley was an industrialist who gave his name to mills that date back to 1784. His grand residence- Riber Castle- towers over the town. Now a ruin, it latterly housed what became a feral colony of wallabies. Smedley also played a leading role in developing the town as a Victorian spa where people such as Ivor Novello and Robert Louis Stevenson came to take the ‘water cure’.
Inspired by the steep tramlines of San Francisco, a tramway was built to take people to the Bank Road hydros, pictures of which are on the ceiling of Stanley’s Alehouse.
Stanley’s is a micropub, formerly a pharmacy and estate agent in recent guises. It had 5 beers, most on the stronger side. I opted for Blackjack Rabbit Hunt (4.4%), a pale ale in good condition. There are some neat touches around the pub. Morland’s afficianado Alec Latham would enjoy this.
The descent back into town culminated in the other required pub, Twenty Ten, a cafe style bar where Riber Gold (4.3%) was sampled from Matlock Wolds Farm, a new brewery to me. This was what made me decide it was more cafe than bar:
And this is what Martin thought of it https://retiredmartin.com/2017/06/18/modern-matlock/