So Peeps, forgive me if this reads like an advertorial but we had such a great night that the words write themselves. We’ve been invited to a friend’s bar. Not just any bar and not just any time, it’s the first night and it opens in the Old Town of the “City of Culture 2017”, Hull.
It’s a glorious evening and we make our way across country from York to Hull in the sunshine through a number of the most delightful places including Bishop Burton complete with village green and duck pond. I used to look after Bishop Burton Agricultural College fifteen years ago and it certainly brought back some fond memories.
We drive through some of the less desirable areas of Hull to find ourselves heading towards the docks then a couple of right turns later and we’re into an area with the most beautiful Georgian, Edwardian, Victorian, in fact, most ???ians that you can think of including our own Elizabethian (I know it’s Elizabethan but that would’ve have interrupted my flow 🙂 )
What you can also discover is The Brain Jar. It’s a bar owned and run by Emma, James and Giles and it’s a beauty. It’s not posh (but it is), it’s not deliberately arty (but it is), it doesn’t have draught beer (no it doesn’t) but the bottled beer is top quality, it does mix the most sublime of cocktails and has several shelves of the best spirits including the best whisky and gin and to top it all are the wines, don’t miss out on the wines and if you don’t like alcohol there are top quality teas, coffees, non-alcoholic cocktails and juices.
It has several rooms; don’t just stay downstairs. There’s the upstairs front room that’s littered with wonderful paintings and photographs. Then there are the upstairs back rooms where the music isn’t intrusive and you can talk. In fact, if you play an instrument you may want to get a bunch of friends together and ask if you can ensconce yourselves in the back room and just enjoy an evening of the best drinks, perhaps with a bite to eat and combine it with the best music, your own! You’d need to talk to the owners on this one, I just think its a good idea and it’s certainly something that we would have done in our day.
The furniture is quirky and functional and the food is excellent with pizzas, breads and a wonderful spicy little number that comes on a plate scattered with various pieces of the most glorious artisan breads together with a pot that has a candle in it and on top of that is an earthenware dish that has a very spicy, and extremely tasty, chilli tomato concoction; the latter being kept warm by the candle below. We have a plate of each and share them between the three of us, it is both filling and tasty.
They even prepare me a pizza without cheese as I have a lactose intolerance, it sounds like a conflict of terms but Italian bread with garlic, tomato and a drizzle of olive oil can really hit the spot and it does.
There are a few chairs outside with an extremely friendly and helpful security guy called Geordie who’ll tell you about the area and what not to miss.
As we reluctantly leave we take a walk along Trinity House Lane to Hull Minster (Holy Trinity Church) which is a seriously imposing medieval building in its own square where we meet Alex. Alex is another security man working with a group of people who’re preparing the square for a ballet performance tomorrow night where dancing will take place not only in the square but also on the stone parapets of the Minster – they’re really taking the City of Culture seriously and the people we’ve met so far are helpful beyond the call and without doubt friendly beyond comparison.
We’ll be back for a couple of days soon and stay over so that we can indulge ourselves a little more disgracefully at the Brain Jar and also take a look around this wonderful part of the city, The Old Town, well-described if you google it, has plenty to visit and some of it for free.
To steal a sentence or two from the www.visithullandeastyorkshire.com web site it is
“a hidden treasure where you will discover Hull’s collection of free museums including Streetlife Museum of Transport, where all the family can climb aboard a tram or take a carriage ride into the past, and Hull and East Riding Museum of Archaeology where you’ll find a life-size woolly mammoth. It is also home to Hepworth Arcade where Mr Marks and Mr Spencer had one of their first penny bazaars! There is also a strong link between Hull Old Town and the English Civil War with the alleged plotting parlour at Ye Olde White Harte and the actual spot at which Charles I was refused entry to the city of Hull – Beverley Gate, as well as the world’s smallest window the George Hotel.”
City of Culture is still active for another four months and the flywheel effect will maintain a high profile beyond; as Arnie said, “We’ll be back”
Thanks, Emma, James and Giles for the invite, your bar is great and we had a wonderful time.
Love, George, Cecilia and Frank.
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Please be aware that some of the anecdotes are rude, if you’re easily offended then don’t visit…G..x