The Sound of the (West London) Suburbs

There is a sprinkling of places in London that have rarely troubled the Good Beer Guide, mainly because there are so few pubs in those locations. Some feel quite featureless to the casual visitor, mostly suburban houses punctuated by 1960’s shopping parades.

Northfields is one such area but now has the Owl and Pussycat, a tiny brewpub.

Listed under West Ealing in the Good Beer Guide, the well nigh microscopic 1.25 barrel brewery is sandwiched between the bar and the toilet.

The sink is so small that, unless you are Donald Trump, you have to wash one hand at a time.

There was a job going but Aidan and I fell woefully short of meeting the person spec. Sociable? Nah. Willing to learn and accept advice? Come on.

Marko Paulo is the name of the brewery supplying the pub. The 3.3% bitter was the pick of their beer on the day, carrying plenty of body for such a low gravity beer. The 5% Coal Porter also gained passmarks.

A bus to Hanwell next for the Dodo, another micropub down a side street.

There were rules, some of which are associated with the licence conditions, though conversation remains optional for now.  And it had Tiny Rebel beer, which should never be declined and wasn’t.

A trio of micropubs was completed at the Hop & Vine in Ruislip where the day’s apparently foolish, though uncharacteristic policy of two pints in each pub was beginning to take its toll.

I had the Big Smoke Solaris (3.8%) but made no notes, recalling only that Aidan and the owner compared details of their respective trips to Patagonia or was it Swindon? The pub was busy and noisy and I couldn’t hear very well.

The next morning, drifting north west, the new entry in Colindale is a Spoons.

Not that one

That one

The name, location and slightly tired aura indicate that this was one of the earlier Wetherspoons, opened in 1990 in a former Woolworth’s.

I contributed to the air of general fatigue after the exertions of the night before- matched by the beer, which wasn’t so much tired as on life support- but bravely ventured to Shoreditch to see how much I could pay for sour beer.

17 thoughts on “The Sound of the (West London) Suburbs

  1. 2 pints each in 3 pubs – are you turning into BRAPA.

    Those 3 all had good beer on my visits but were all virtually empty, though admittedly 4 in the Dodo meant it was half-full. Different economics to the Spoons (not that one).

    Liked by 1 person

    1. That’s the rub for micropubs isn’t it- the economic model carries much less risk. The 2 pint thing was a mistake and one I did not ever again repeat until the following day (in Goose Island). Normal service has since been resumed (oh, apart from Wylam).

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  2. Oddly, while I felt Colindale as an area was on life-support, the Sambrooks Porter scored well (3.5) on my Christmas visit, despite not being a Christmas beer. Unless it was supposed to be a Citra beer, in which case it was rubbish. As you’ve said before, inconsistency creeping into Spoons cask.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. “a tiny brewpub.”

    Tiny maybe, but six cask pumps!

    “Willing to learn and accept advice?”

    Pfft. Any man married for 10 years falls into that category (if he knows what’s good for him!). 🙂

    “Marko Paulo is the name of the brewery supplying the pub.”

    (slow golf clap – on the name)

    “There were rules,”

    Love the last one with regards to F and C. 🙂

    “where the day’s apparently foolish, though uncharacteristic policy of two pints in each pub was beginning to take its toll.”

    Start low and work your way to the higher ABVs.

    “I had the Big Smoke Solaris (3.8%) ”

    Aha! See above.

    “Not that one”

    (doffs hat) – Well done sir!

    “The name, location and slightly tired aura ”

    Still think George Orwell’s estate should sue. 😉

    “but bravely ventured to Shoreditch to see how much I could pay for sour beer.”

    The mind boggles… since it’s still technically London.

    Cheers

    Liked by 1 person

  4. House rules at the Dodo a bit strict for smokers. What happens if you don’t want to smoke four cigarettes at any one time?

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    1. To be honest I can’t remember seeing them live though do remember buying Sound of the Suburbs. They reformed and playing Birmingham No Future Festival on 4 May, which may also coincide with the Blues ten point deduction….

      Liked by 1 person

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