Posts Tagged ‘Food’

The Old White Swan

January 12, 2011

It’s a few days into December and we are both getting ready to head back to Canada for a couple weeks. Since it’s Ron’s last day of work at the pasty shop and he’s heading out of town after his shift, we thought we’d make an early pub visit today.

Stat Sheet 16: Old White Swan
Events: Live Music
Notes: TV, Wifi

Kat: This entry is a little unconventional, for us at least. It’s 10 AM and even we aren’t about to get a pint now. We are getting breakfast and it comes with a free hot drink. The entrance is a nice gated patio with the bar’s moniker arching over top. As soon as we sit down we hear Frank Sinatra crooning a Christmas tune, this place can’t be bad. Ron orders our meals and we melt into the cushioned seats and holiday atmosphere. Our table marker is a mini wine barrel; how I do love miniature versions of things. This pub is big and spacious. Even at this early hour there are a fair number of other patrons already settled in, although, not all of them resisting the pints like we are. I like this pub for afternoon or early evening drinks. The vibe doesn’t say night time hang out, to me, but I like it and I am comfortable here.

Ron: Canada here we come!  Of course, it would be wrong without saying goodbye to some of York’s pubs.  I want to be prepared for my last day of work, and a hearty full English is the way forward.  I’ve been past this place many times, and have always thought it looked nice inside.  I’m not disappointed on this chilly morning, the Old White Swan’s atmosphere is warm and inviting.  The service is friendly, and the barmaid seems more fazed by our Canadian accents than the fact that she is serving Guinness before lunch.  The food is a bit above average, and the warm drinks are a great way to prepare for my last day on the job.  I hope to come back here for lunch in the new year, though it’s probably not a great destination for a night on the town.

Feeling full and prepared to face the day, we depart, bidding the cheerful patrons good-day.  The work day has begun, though after the sun sets we plan on scouting out some new locations before we head back to Canada.
Cheers x x


Guy Fawkes Inn

December 21, 2009
The next stop on this mini-crawl is the birthplace of none other than the infamous Guy Fawkes.  The Brits recognized this fact and decided that, of course, it is the perfect place to install a pub.
Stat Sheet 14: Guy Fawkes Inn, 25 High Petergate, York, YO1 7HP – 0845 460 2020
Notes: Food

Kat: A lot of pubs look the same at first; dark wood details including big wooden pillars and other structures obscuring your way to the bar, exposed beams on the ceiling, and ales. Ales are always featured highly in pubs, so much so that I almost feel bad asking for a lager. After Ron orders the house ale, I sheepishly ask the bartender for a lager; the first one he tries to pour me runs dry. He moves on to a different one that also malfuntions. My last option is Beck’s, which I go for, and he pours me a pint. Wait, that’s not a pint. That’s a half pint. He poured me a half pint. What’s the big idea? I ordered my beer the same way that Ron did, he got a full pint and I got a half-pint?! Damn you, northern England and your stereotypes! I can drink a full pint with the best of them! I’ll show you Guy Fawkes Inn, I’ll show you by going to a different pub right now…

Ron: The barman is a friendly local, who pours me a nice pint of Guy Fawkes Ale.  The names of English ales always confuse me a bit, as I can distinguish nothing about this pint that relates to Guy Fawkes, other than the fact I am drinking it in a pub with his name.  It’s a decent enough brew, but I might as well be drinking something cheaper. This pub’s particular location only seems to serve to increase the prices ever so slightly.  We don’t venture deeper into the pub, and leave once we’ve finished.

We part with Guy Fawkes’ birthplace, the desire to enact violent change has not been instilled within us.  Kat was starving by the time we left, so we set out in search of fish and chips.  Sadly, the nearest fish and chip shop recently suffered a grease fire, so we trudged along the streets uncertain where to look.  Fortunately, we are in England, somewhere will surely be able to serve us this classic English standby.
Cheers x x


December 14, 2009
In a regal looking building on Victoria Square, Harker’s looms like an old bank.  There is a distinct impression that, like a bank, you need money to walk through the heavy front doors. Having just finished 9 hour shifts, we brave it.
Stat Sheet 11: Harker’s

Kat: Care for a pint after work? Yes, I do. Ron and I literally choose the first pub we see after running our final work errand of the day. Inside, we walk straight to the bar and order a pint. I am hungry for dinner since I worked through supper time without eating. I purchase one of the mini “bar bites” offerings of chips for a nominal fee. Ron and I grab a seat in the window, overlooking Victoria Square (the soon-to-be home of the town Christmas tree). I remember that I got a text while we were leaving work, I check it, it’s from my housemate. He’s reminding me that we have Tuesday night standing plans to go to bingo. I tell Ron and he’s unconditionally into the idea. We down our pints much faster than expected and power walk to the bingo hall in record time…
Ron: I keep it simple and order a pint of John Smith’s thinking I would have time to sit an enjoy a slow pint.  This pub is as regal inside as it is out, and I always feel like a bit of an imposter here.  The bar staff are just friendly enough to rush Kat’s chips when we find out she had already made plans for the evening and need to rush out, to bingo of all places.  I begrudgingly sip my pint quickly, lest I make us miss the first round at Mecca.

Harker’s is a mainstay of the Pasty Shop after-work drinks, with many of the company’s social nights there.  The loyalty probably comes from the fact that although the pub isn’t amazing, there is simply nothing to complain about, and it beats searching out a more unfamiliar pub.
Cheers x x