>I don’t find myself in the Wild West much any more. There are enough people in Fat Face rugby shirts around our chunk of E11 these days without having to go to unusual SW postcodes to see more. However, this week a combination of visiting friends and a jaunt to the Tate Britain found us in an obscure sidestreet in Pimlico at a place I read about on the ever-reliable Boak And Bailey.
From the outside, The Cask (or the Cask Pub and Kitchen to give its proper, wince-inducing moniker*) looks like it belongs in one of those estates on The Secret Millionaire, with anti-heroin striplights in the bogs. Miles better inside though, where it’s all light jazz, comfy chairs and tea lights. Much as I like the horse brass ‘n’ copper kettle trad pub, i’ll drink in a cave if the pop is good, and the real delight at the Cask is the range of beers on offer. Two pumps from Dark Star (oddly, wearing a CAMRA LocAle badge on the Hophead), two from Arran and – oh boy – three from Thornbridge. There was also two from Brugs Zot, Kuppers Kolsch, Mort Subite Kriek, Moravka’s unfiltered lager, Rothaus Pils and Keesman Herren Pils. I’ve never seen a spread quite like it in London. They even had Andechser Weissbier in the fridge, an all-time favourite of mine. I nearly did a little dance when the landlord said they had Andechser Dunkel coming in later. When we got back to Ten-Inch Villas, I was delighted to find Mrs TIW had got me a couple of weiss as a Valentine treat. That’s real romance.
We got through a Dark Star American Pale Ale, one each of Thornbridge Hark, Wild Swan and Kipling – every drop in perfect condition – and a couple of superbly refreshing and quietly potent Herrens. I knew it was time to hit the road when, on a visit to the facilities, I was cursing the lack of hot air from the hand dryer. Then I realised I was actually rubbing my hands together under the paper towel dispenser.
(*’Kitchen’ I can deal with if there’s food on. But the only pubs with ‘pub’ in their official title should be found in tourist hotels and theme parks in Tokyo or Nevada.)