In a bid to further showcase the diverse operators fuelling city vibrancy across the UK, we’ve created a new feature for you.
If I’m asked to recommend a particularly interesting pub or bar that’s worth a visit to a friend who’s not too acquainted with the area in question, there are always certain locations that are easier to consider than others.
Take London as the obvious example. Not only is it possible to tip off a mate about where in the whole city they should be having their next drink, but it can also be done for smaller clusters of the capital. Living there certainly helps.
But what about the rest of the UK? As a magazine, we’ve always prided ourselves on showcasing who is doing what well across the whole of the country, not just focusing on the bustling limelight of London et al. From country pubs to Scottish superstars, each and every success story deserves recognition. However, this year we’re going one step beyond to further our knowledge of the operations bringing inner-city hospitality to life through a variety of concepts by spending time visiting the areas and getting to know who’s doing what and where. The hope being that you, our readers, will take inspiration, ideas and comfort from the thriving activity taking place across the land. This new focus is called City Watch. We’ve partnered up with our friends from Pepsi MAX to bring you a number of city focuses throughout the year. You can read its first instalment from page 22, as Pub & Bar heads to Nottingham.
The word ‘variety’ is key, for although I only spent two days walking around the Midlands city (covering just over 20km, by the way), the assortment of styles and concepts that I visited was fantastic. Accommodating a mixture of offers (sport, food, cocktails) under one roof was rarely witnessed, with pubs and bars instead honing their skills through a single focus. However, if you’re after an example of how to deliver everything at once without alienating certain demographics, turn to page 34 and have a read about the Lion + Pheasant in Shrewsbury, because we’ve dropped in on them too. Cocktails, beer, wine, sport, rooms, fine dining, lunch… they’ve got the lot.
Tristan O’Hana - Group Editor