I should have saved this as the penultimate (all bar one? No? Okay) bar in my attempt to visit every pub/bar in Cambridge this year, but having walked into a nearby bar and walked straight back out owing to the overwhelming stink of toilets, and being a bit peckish, thought this would do for a quick drink and a snack. Coincidentally, this happens to be a bar I’ve only ever walked in and straight back out of before, never previously staying for a drink, just curious to see what the beer selection was and if it had changed. It’s not exactly an exciting selection, but so far as I know it’s the only place in Cambridge that has Sierra Nevada Pale Ale permanently on.
This is not, nor does it attempt to be, a craft beer bar, despite some exposed brickwork and the obligatory bare filament light bulbs. It’s a regular bar, ambient volume of music and chatter easily tolerable, notably comfy leather seats including a few padded stools at the bar, mirrors and full length windows giving a light and airy feel, keg only beers tasting okay, well apart from the Mosaic which tasted overly-floral, as if it had been filtered through a Randall of lilies, and a standard bar menu of burgers and snacks – the Patatas Bravas a good accompaniment to the Camden Hells especially. All in all, a respectable and intentionally “female-friendly” place (one of All Bar One’s remits – and when I mentioned to a friend that I’d been here, he remarked “Oh I used to go there when I was internet dating – ideal place, well you don’t invite your first date to a dingy pub”), pretty much the “stylish city bar” they intend it to be, and pleasant enough, though probably not one whose beer selection alone would tempt me back unless it changed often – I’m more likely to stop at the ‘Spoons next door or walk another 500 metres to the Pint Shop for example – or with a menu that could compete with my affection for the Wagamama above.
Adnams Mosaic, Camden Hells, Sierra Nevada Pale, Amstel, Birra Moretti, Peroni, Guinness