The conviviality of my local; the pub where a well of warmth rises up and envelopes one as soon as you enter its doors (it works for me and I'm sure it works for you whever your local is); the pub where you can set your clock as its regulars come creeping from their homes on the dot of six, Shakespeare's reluctant schoolboys become adult; the pub where the 23-year avoidance of Bass was overturned in the time it took to joyfully drink a pint; the pub where a look at the loo where the women come and go is recommended for one and all; the pub where George the ghost occasionally pops a lightbulb. The pub as a place where, as someone said to me at the weekend, 'I feel happy as soon as I go in'.
This Saturday I shall be at Otley's fabulous pub the Bunch of Grapes in Pontypriddl doing a bit of a beer tasting and a pub talk drawing up on my last book Great British Pubs alongside some of my Daily Telegraph pub columns, plus some of my own thoughts on what makes a great pub. It's my attempt to talk about beer and pubs in a more relaxed and informal manner than my usual beer tastings, something that I will be doing a lot more often in the future; it's an experiment perhaps, but I like the idea of change. So if you're in the area, it starts at 5.30 and do come along.