Southerly by David Haywood

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Southerly: Five Simple Ingredients for a Good Pub

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  • Paul Campbell,

    The best idea of course is Emerson's on tap ..... mmmm ...

    I've always considered darts at the pub a mixed blessing - especially after the people next to you have been at it for a few hours and their aim is getting a tad flaky .... recently we've actually started werewolf in the pub - but by the fire downstairs so as not to scare the regulars

    Dunedin • Since Nov 2006 • 2070 posts Report Reply

  • David Haywood,

    Emerson's on tap? You lucky bastard -- which pub?

    I was just last week in Dunedin, and had no idea. By the way, what a brilliant city Dunedin is -- I fall in love with the place every time I visit.

    RE: darts

    From one point of view the risk aspect of darts can add considerably to the enjoyment of the game. Although I agree that if the dart becomes embedded in your own cranium, it somehow becomes less amusing.

    Dunsandel • Since Nov 2006 • 958 posts Report Reply

  • Duncan McKenzie,

    I bought a beer in a small town in Indonesia once.

    The town had no electricity. Ice was made in a plant on the edge of town, then brought into town in big blocks on the back of a bike. It was then thrown onto the side of the road and cut into smaller bits.

    Several of which were put in my beer...

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 47 posts Report Reply

  • andrew llewellyn,

    Glass, aerosol, or pipette?

    Since Nov 2006 • 2073 posts Report Reply

  • Kyle Matthews,

    In a well-known Christchurch watering-hole, I was recently served a pint of beer with ice-cubes.

    I was visiting a girlfriend in Baltimore in 1995, which is where she lived. It was June and really hot. We got a bottle of red wine, and since it was so hot, and the wine wasn't cold, she very nicely put three ice cubes in my wine glass. Apparently if we'd gotten it earlier she would have bunged it in the fridge to chill it, but since we didn't have time she thought she'd try ice instead. In red wine.

    Needless to say, I broke up with her shortly after returning to NZ.

    Emerson's on tap? You lucky bastard -- which pub?

    Several finer establishments in Dunedin serve what I like to call 'nectar of the gods' on tap. Eureka on Albany St does Emersons Bookbinder and Pilsner on tap. Nice outside garden bar if it's a warm afternoon too. The Inch Bar at the Gardens used to, but I haven't been in a few years to see if they still do.

    Since Nov 2006 • 6157 posts Report Reply

  • Paul Campbell,

    There are several that have Emerson's on tap - Eureka down by the campus, the bar attached to the tourist restaurant in the Railway Station are the 2 I can remember off the top of my head - not all (nor even most) the bars listed on their web site for Dunedin have it on tap though

    Dunedin • Since Nov 2006 • 2070 posts Report Reply

  • Michael Stevens,

    That she could put ice in your beer, in ANY beer, is, I believe, a sign that our New Zealand identity has indeed been eroded to an empty Te Papa-like shell.

    Was she not raised among real NZers, where her parents rewarded her for bringing them a cold one on a hot day? Had she not been exposed to our indigenous beer-drinking culture where such a move wold result in cries of "Anathema!" (or the kiwi equivalent - "What the fuck!)?

    O tempora! O mores!

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 229 posts Report Reply

  • Emma Hart,

    I'd probably rate the staff club at the University of Canterbury as the best all-round pub in Christchurch -- that is, if it were actually a pub rather than a private club. The beer is perhaps not quite up to the standard that one might hope, but the staff are suitably surly (they treat you like shit, to be perfectly frank), and the décor is excellent.

    Though the last I saw of it was some time back, the Staff Club was lovely. Quality of conversation also excellent. And the guy I was... 'going out with' is such a strong term... anyway, he was a bartender at the Staff Club. He always got the job of cleaning out the Guinness hose.

    I do like a nice garden bar - mostly because it's the only place in the pub where you can hear yourself talk. A nice garden bar, not 'a large shingle ashtray with tables shoved in it'.

    Christchurch • Since Nov 2006 • 4335 posts Report Reply

  • Marcelo Rodriguez Ferrere,

    David, you're preaching to the choir!. Now, just set up your own pub that meets your five criteria and we'll be away laughing...

    As an ex-Dunedin resident, I can confirm that Emerson's on tap is becoming more and more commonplace. Eureka, Inch Bar and Tonic on Princes Street all have a good range of Emerson's, as well as a once-a-week special where they use a traditional hand-pump to pour it. Of course, all three bars fail the five criteria - Eureka and Inch Bar for decor and Tonic for sports television.

    Though I know it's not in keeping with the Southerly nature of the bloh, I have been searching for weeks to find somewhere in Wellington that pulls a halfway decent pint (e.g. something a little more innovative than Monteiths or Macs, both of are starting to bore me) and found it last night: Southern Cross on Abel Smith St has both Emerson's Pilsener and Bookbinder on tap.

    Dunedin • Since Nov 2006 • 18 posts Report Reply

  • Lyndon Hood,

    I'm reasonably sure I've seen places in Wellington with Emerson's on tap. The more I try and remember where the more it seems like a dream, but there may also have been coziness present.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 1094 posts Report Reply

  • Marcelo Rodriguez Ferrere,

    Pray tell, what are these places you speak of? Jolt that memory back into action! I would expect the Malthouse or Bar Edward has it, but I haven't checked

    Dunedin • Since Nov 2006 • 18 posts Report Reply

  • Shep Cheyenne,

    Agreed the Twisted Hop has the best beer in Christchurch. The Twisted Ankle is rich and dark, a thing of beauty.

    Any weather I'll sit outside (a few of my mates smoke) and enjoy the atmosphere of Poplar Lane. It used to be a back street with brothels either side and trashy shops.
    Now they've got great boutiques, apartments, some of the best bars in Christchurch & three brothels. It seems to work though.
    Not like Dave Hendersons SOL development. The development wasn't people first and bars second. It's bars first and no room for people. The Living Space apartments aren't livable with the current level of mayhem caused by SOL.

    My favourite bar in Christchurch has to be without doubt, Pomeroys Bar. It even covers all of your bases. A real neighbourhood bar where guys turn up in High Viz & steel cap boots or anything other than a suit.
    The brothel up stairs is now a yoga studio full of young flexible people with flushed faces from the exertion - hmm.

    http://harringtonsbreweries.co.nz/history.html

    Since Oct 2007 • 927 posts Report Reply

  • Felix Marwick,

    Ice in beer!!

    Surely that's got to contravene laws both secular and spiritual. Either way it's fully deserving of extreme punishment and retribution.

    I'd recommend crucifixion (or force feed them half a dozen cans of Kiwi Draught)

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 194 posts Report Reply

  • Nick Howells,

    I disagree a little on the recorded music issue - the right music is a plus sometimes I think. Summertime, garden bar, rocksteady records on the jukebox.. But so often the music is wrong or at too high volume.

    I agree entirely on the sports tv though - my enjoyment of a pub is inversely proportional to the number of TVs in it - in Auckland I like Galbraiths (no tv) and the London Bar (one but it is always on mute and can therefore be ignored).

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 20 posts Report Reply

  • Ben Austin,

    The loud background music thing seems to be universal - even London, home of the pub seems to be beset by it. At least I don't have to listen to the Gambler at least twice a night now though, so I guess it isn't all bad.

    London • Since Nov 2006 • 878 posts Report Reply

  • dc_red,

    I was just last week in Dunedin, and had no idea. By the way, what a brilliant city Dunedin is -- I fall in love with the place every time I visit.

    I think the operative word in that sentence might be visit. Taking up residence is another issue altogether.

    All by-the-by, though - David, what is your opinion on the question of fireplaces (pref open and a bit smokey) in pubs? For 'em or ag'in 'em?

    Oil Patch, Alberta • Since Nov 2006 • 706 posts Report Reply

  • Gareth Ward,

    Perhaps the best pub I came across was one whose name I can't remember (nor find via thewondersoftheinterweb) in one of those streets that ran from Hampstead village out to the Heath.

    It was a standalone big old building, filled with eclectic comfy furniture from a variety of eras, and laid out such that there were separate areas of varying 'vibes', served brilliant beer on tap with simple, basic yet clever and well-cooked pub food, played old soul and reggae out the back in the sunny courtyard and had a couple of little dart boards hidden around the place.

    It had taken the old-school concepts of what a good pub is (as well defined by Mr Haywood here) and bought them up to a modern standard without awfully modernising it (hard to describe).
    There isn't a pub in AKL that gets even close in any way...

    Auckland, NZ • Since Mar 2007 • 1721 posts Report Reply

  • dc_red,

    Another curious question: while there's a lot to be said for the taste of beer from the tap, has anyone else found it packs a much harder punch (straight to the stomach, in my case) than the equivalent volume of beer in bottles?

    Oil Patch, Alberta • Since Nov 2006 • 706 posts Report Reply

  • Lyndon Hood,

    Appears Bar Edward has bookbinder, india pale ale AND oatmeal stout on tap, along with other goodness. And two (2) different Emerson wheat beers in the fridge also.

    Appears to lack coziness and absence-of-sports. But does make me thirsty.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 1094 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown,

    Personally, I have never heard of anyone, anywhere, not even Australians, who want ice-cubes in beer.

    It's absolutely customary in Vietnam. You have to ask them to leave it out if you don't want it.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 18663 posts Report Reply

  • Annabel McAleer,

    I was quite taken with Fat Eddies when I was last in Chch -- down the end of the SOL L-shaped bit. No idea what it's like at night, but in the afternoon it was dead comfy.

    Auckland • Since May 2007 • 4 posts Report Reply

  • Marcelo Rodriguez Ferrere,

    Mr Hood, you are a scholar and a gentleman. I'm off to Bar Edward right now - I had a hunch they'd stock some, but never in my wildest dreams did I think they'd stock the Stout! Even Eureka in Dunedin doesn't do that...

    Dunedin • Since Nov 2006 • 18 posts Report Reply

  • Julian Melville,

    It's absolutely customary in Vietnam. You have to ask them to leave it out if you don't want it.

    Interesting - I haven't been to Vietnam but I've never been offered ice in Cambodia, Thailand or Laos. There's some good beer up that way though. Beer Lao watching the sun go down over the Mekong is pretty civilised.

    Auckland • Since Dec 2006 • 182 posts Report Reply

  • Jackie Clark,

    My requitements are almost in complete opposition to yours, David. I don't like beer, so I don't care how good it is. And I don't do the whole sport thing, so natch to that too. I do, however, love a good pub, and I like good pub food. So many of our bars and pubs have become repositories for those dreadful bloody fruit machines - pokies is such an apt name. I like nothing better than friendly bar staff, nice background music - preferably of the instrumental jazz kind - and an ice cold rum and coke. A garden bar with ashtrays on the tables, and plenty of space to breathe. Now that's perfection. I used to frequent the old Birdcage in my mis-spent youth, and I swear that was the perfect pub. Nowadays, I wouldn't have the foggiest where you'd find a great pub, but I suspect that if the old Kiwi were still going, that would be primo.

    Mt Eden, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 3122 posts Report Reply

  • Paul Campbell,

    I believe that pouring cheap beer into pokies rather than money has been known to make pubs a more pleasant place

    Dunedin • Since Nov 2006 • 2070 posts Report Reply

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