Delectable Dark Beers: A Top Beer Not So Perfect Ten

Ten of the finest dark beers – mainly milds, stouts, and porters At this time of writing we are in the midst of Black Friday, an American import which marks the first shopping day after Thanksgiving Day. Thanks inevitably to the internet it has become an international phenomenon. In these parts, it is associated with…

Lost Items From The ‘Spoons Menu: A Feast of the M60 Not So Perfect Ten

Ten items we have loved and lost from the J.D. Wetherspoon menu Few entrepreneurs would consider naming their business after a teacher they dreaded. In October 1979, Tim Martin did just that with a London pub. Nearly three decades on, it became one of Britain’s best loved (and equally most derided) brands. Today, any town…

The Correct Use of Sauce… on Chips: Feast of the M60

Feast of the M60’s forthright views on the correct use of tomato sauce, brown sauce, and similar condiments on chips On this sceptred isle of ours (and countless other small islands around the UK mainland), there are several things that can never fail to polarise our nation. One is the long term effects of the…

The Correct Use of Toast: Feast of the M60

Feast of the M60’s opportunist/timely post celebrates National Toast Day There is only one foodstuff that turns a cooked breakfast from SkyBet League Two to Barclays Premier League status. It is a five letter word which is also used to celebrate a momentous occasion. After about five minutes under the grill it goes well with baked…

The Stores That Tesco Ate: A Lost Precinct Not So Perfect Ten

A look at ten supermarket chains absorbed by Tesco since 1945 For social historians and retail commentators, the recent history of Tesco is peppered with twists and turns. Contemporary hagiographies focus on the store chain’s tax affairs, or their presence on our High Streets. Much of the groundwork was set in the 1960s and 1970s…

The Joy of the Micro Pub: Top Beer

A look at the rising popularity of the micro pub In George Orwell’s ideal pub, the Moon Under the Water, the author favoured a Victorian ambience. No pretence. Even the stale tobacco smoke, a sight that few people born after 1990 are able to remember in public houses. Lager had yet to make its presence…

Eatymology: A Tea Potted History of the Superstore Café

Feast of the M60 looks at how the superstore café has evolved in the last fifty years Please forgive me for taking a well trodden part for this introduction. In my formative years, the supermarket café seemed fairly exotic. Supermarkets, when I was young, were small, in town centre locations, and a bit chaotic. The…

Pub Food Classics: The Cheese Toastie

Feast of the M60 muses over what seems to be a dying art in public houses On the rare occasions that you go to the pub (for anything besides family occasions), you may fancy a quick snack with your pint. You yearn for something quite filling though not over facing. A quick sandwich, a tasty ham…

Top Beer: 3. Stockport Brewing Company’s Stock Porter

Top Beer on Stockport Brewing Company’s porter For lovers of cask conditioned and bottle conditioned ales, Greater Manchester is some sort of a metropolis for its microbreweries. Stockport town centre also has three microbreweries alongside Frederic Robinson’s Unicorn Brewery. Two of them are yards apart, with the third one closer to Heaviley.

How Privatisation Killed Off the British Rail Sandwich Joke

Heard the one about the Northern Rail sandwich…? Thought not. If you visit a busy mainline station anywhere in the United Kingdom, today’s concourses resemble a small town shopping centre. It is a far cry from an era when the only shops were those of W.H. Smith and Son, John Menzies, Finlays or Wymans. Other than newsagents’ shops,…