Friday 22 May 2015


Water, not any old water, cucumber and mint infused, home alone in a massive Kilmer jar, comfortable at the back of the bar in the Georgian Townhouse, hiding behind the serried ranks of lustrous hand pumps and gleaming taps. Craft water perhaps, fresh tasting, a zingy accompaniment to my glass of High Wire, tzatziki water perhaps, a pleasing draught of difference. Even though I drink a lot of water, I rarely order any whilst in the pub, uninteresting and expensive it is and chlorine takes its bow with tap water but this was glorious, especially as the beers in front of me were equally translucent. As well as High Wire, there were Camden Ink and Pale, Adnams Ghost Ship and something from Redwell, whose name I didn’t catch (I’d had their Bullards No 2 IPA earlier in the day, where aromatics of citra and cascade leapt sprite-like out of the glass). There’s a youthfulness and lightness about the Townhouse, that makes me want to return and study the beers and eat the food (the haddock and chips stirs the soul and stiffens the sinews of gluttony), and as I engulf myself in the High Wire I hear about ghosts and hospitals and voices in the night and the laughter of those who enjoy this pub speak about the time they went to Yarmouth Pier by way of Ipswich town.

I’m in Norwich for the most fantastic City of Ale event (whose organisers treated us to grub at the Townhouse) doing a couple of talks with Britain’s Beer Revolution co-author Roger Protz.
The Georgian Townhouse, a rather lovely place

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