Best way to experience several watering holes in a single day? You arrange a pub crawl. Here’s an account of a Saturday spent on a Cambridge pub crawl.
It was a text message on a Friday night that set the plan in motion for what would end up being an epic Saturday afternoon spent exploring some of Cambridge’s drinking spots. With the gang assembled in the morning it was a case of meeting up at the train station and heading to the university town. The concept was a simple one, everyone put £20 into a kitty, for some reason I found myself charged with being bank manager, and off we went.
Our first stop on our Cambridge pub crawl Saturday was a fairly fleeting one for the simple reason that the rain forced us to seek shelter and there wasn’t much space inside what with the live music going on. All part of fundraising efforts and there was a vibe inside, albeit an older crowd. Not a bad way to get the ball rolling.
To get to the Flying Pig, walk down Station Road and then swing a left onto Hills Road. You can’t miss it.
2. Old Bicycle Shop
So named because, well, it’s inside what was an old bicycle shop. One that was said to be among the oldest in the country. As a nod to the heritage of the building, there are telltale signs about the property’s former use with some of the art and decor a nod to the humble bicycle.
It was busy when we got there so seating was limited but the choice of beer here was a good one. Beavertown Gamma Ray was probably the best beverage of the day. Pretty tropical stuff, the brewers mention hints of mango and grapefruit, and it packs a bit of a punch at 5,4% but it was good.
More than a pint consumed here seeing as Mikayla got her numbers wrong and ordered four beers for the three boys so one had to be split to top up leaking glasses.
Side note, have added the Old Bicycle Shop to the list of places to try for a bite to eat on another visit. Saturday mornings spent sipping coffee and watching the world pass by another reason to go.
3. Grain and Hop Store
Can’t tell you the name of the beer drunk here except for the fact that it gave off tastes of citrus and coriander. A slice of orange in the pint glass for added effect. The Grain and Hop Store has to be among the best situated pubs in Cambridge given that it is right next to Parker’s Piece.
Seems the kind of place that would make a good venue to go watch football or meet up with a large group. It was also at this point of the afternoon that we had our new Aussie friend, Blake, in tow.
There’s a rooftop space at Revolution that’s said to be super vibey when the weather is good. We didn’t make it that far here. In fact, this stop was a fleeting one. Enough for two shots of flavoured vodka. and the chance to bribe Dylon into taking a selfie with a hen party. He obliged.
You can see why this venue is popular among the hen party set given their array of flavoured and sickly sweet vodkas. Although to be fair the honey flavoured one that I had didn’t go down too badly. You can find Revolution on Downing Street.
5. Steak and Honour
Any good pub crawl makes provision for a food stop. It serves the purpose of regathering the plan and also helping to sober up some of the participants. At this stage nobody was in dire need of a pep talk it was simply a case of hunger. After initially talking the crew into one of the fast foot staples of a standard sesh, we diverted and ended up at Steak and Honour, the recommendation of chef friend, Adam.
A good burger, a seriously good burger, and a Pistonhead Kustom Lager to wash it down and we were good to go again. Steak and Honour is on Wheeler Street, not far from the Corpus Clock.
6. The Eagle
This was one of my favourite stops on the Cambridge pub crawl. It had nothing to do with the fact that it was packed and little to do with the choice of brew here. The Eagle Ale is one of those beers that you drink because you’re there. You wouldn’t necessarily rush back because of it though.
The epic thing at The Eagle is its history. First up is the fact that the ceiling is covered in the names of pilots from a lot the RAF and US airforce squadrons. The Eagle was a favoured venue for the airmen and they used lipstick, corks and lighters to etch their names into the ceiling. There are also US airforce squadron stickers all over the place. No doubt a great card to pull when trying to impress the ladies.
The second nugget of historical reference is that this was the preferred watering hole for Francis Crick and James Watson, of DNA Double Helix fame.
7. The Cambridge Brew House
The final leg of our journey saw us make our way to King Street and a stop in at the Cambridge Brew House. It was packed which says something about its popularity. We were only here long enough for a pint and to be honest I couldn’t tell you what I had here. At this stage the day had caught up with me and I was starting to feel the effects. I think it was one of their standard offerings like Brew House Lager
All in all, an epic day out with the friends. And a relatively inexpensive one too with the pool money only needing to be topped up for the final stop and then not all used with enough to cover the taxi back to the train station. * disclaimer, the vodka shots and food weren’t included.
A Cambridge pub crawl Saturday is always a good idea.