July is a difficult month. The next Good Beer Guide is still weeks away. Football is a bit thin on the ground (though I have managed 23 games since the last week in June). Birds are between migration seasons. But at least the moths – like this suited and booted White Satin – are turning up in numbers.
Another trip to eastern England therefore promised limited GBG returns plus some anticipatory ticks.
The Heron in Stanground, Peterborough was an unexpected pleasure. There is plenty of good beer in the town and its post war housing developments typically include a pub, unlike today's deserts. The Heron is one such pub.
Meri took on the lease for an initial six month period. She quickly addressed some anti social behaviour issues and promoted high quality local cask beer. The Digfield Brewery Chiff Chaff was in tip top condition.
A good anticipatory tick in Peterborough was the Bumble Inn, a micropub in the town centre that has served 600 different beers in its first year.
The Electric Bear Werrrd (4.2%) was an American Pale Ale from a brewery in Bath whose beers I have always enjoyed when sampled.
Aberdeen's Fierce Brewery offered an aromatic 5% Moose Mousse Milk Stout on keg which was also more than decent.
Peterborough's other new micropub – Puzzles? – didn't match the quality of beer at the Bumble Inn. The Topaz was distinctly on the turn at this music venue.
Nearby Whittlesey provided another in its apparently inexhaustible stream of new Good Beer Guide entries. A surviving thatched building in an otherwise more modern area, the New Crown had two beers on. The Moorhouses Blond Witch (4.5%) was competent.
You can play Find the Lady every Saturday night at the New Crown, a card game that was known by a much less savoury title in my youth.
But the best anticipatory tick came at the Anchor in Bourne.
Dancing Duck provide two of the five beers on, including the pub's own badged clean tasting pale ale – Bourne Particular (4.1%) The Anchor also had Jaipur, Proper Job and Titanic Anchor, all served in a good pub atmosphere. Surely short odds on this one featuring in the 2018 Good Beer Guide.
Here's another moth to finish for no good reason – a Blood Vein.