Last night, we drove out for an hour at the Old Hall at Whitehough, near Chinley. This had nothing whatsoever to do with the fact that they were holding a winter beer festival this weekend, that was pure coincidence. We have been here before on a few occasions and it makes a nice stop on an evening walk that can also take in the Navigation at Buxworth.
The place was rocking with people of all ages, the restaurant areas had been given over to drinkers who sat comfortably at long tables next to log fires in the minstrels gallery of the Elizabethan Old hall. In addition to the usual 7 or 8 hand pumped ales on the bar, there were a further 25 or more barrels on stillage in a separate area featuring a good number of local breweries. The beers we sampled were on good form. There were also a selection of craft ciders and a perry in an outside marquee where some simple food was on offer featuring local pies and home made stews.
The Old Hall is a village pub in feel but also combines events like this with a thriving restaurant serving freshly made food from local suppliers such as Mettricks Butchers from Glossop. The pub is a blueprint for success , winning awards hand over fist, and the landlord is still only in his twenties !
The main bar area had a celtic folk group in full swing and everyone was having a great time. We drove back to our own local which was very low key and quiet for a Friday night. Later as we trudged home uphill through heavy rain, we found ourselves wishing that the Old Hall was some six miles nearer!
Note for fellow stopfordians, Chinley is only 15 minutes away by train ! I have a walk planned.