I keep thinking about adopting a different slant to the pub ticking game, I mean everyone’s doing the GBG pubs these days, aren’t they? I had thought about trying to do all the ‘spoons in the UK, I bet someone’s done it already though. Kit Calass has even published a book about the carpets.
I know, I’m going to visit all the Brewdog bars. I’ve done loads already. What do you mean Ian Prise has done them all? Oh NO he hasn’t. Fair play to him mind, for doing all 12 back in 2013, but there’s loads more now, all over the world.
So, I’m going to start in Firenze. No, not the 1970’s poor man’s version of the Opel Manta. I mean the Italian city of Florence where Brewdog opened a branch in 2014.
The bar is right in the middle of the shopping area, in a prime location. All you see from the outside is a door way, sandwiched between two shops. Keep going down the long passageway and it opens out into a bar area at the end. There’s a downstairs cellar area too, which was the busiest part on my visit.
There’s no cellar for the beer, which is contained, micro pub style, behind glass doors in it’s own refrigerated compartment. A keg only micro pub, now there’s a thought?
All the decor, fixtures and fittings are straight out of the Brewdog bar catalogue and there’s little concession to Italian in any of the signage or promotional material. Even the sign outside tells you they do burgers in English. Probably no need to put it into Italian because all the locals know you can get a decent burger at least €2 cheaper in most places elsewhere.
They’d even got an English clientele. Can you tell who they are from the photos? Remember, always be conscious of what you look like from behind! A couple of Doylems wanderied in asking if they had the English football on. They didn’t have to shout though, did they? TV, in a Brewdog? Come on lads. The staff were more English in style than Italian too, presenting a rather surly, punky, post modernist attitude to customer care than is usually the case in Tuscany.
Free Wi-Fi and the uni-sex toilets were excellent. I wasn’t sure about the vivarium? But after half an hour gazing at the brightly lit sticks, none of them moved, so I concluded whatever was in there was a) hiding or b) a very slothful chameleon?
A lot of Dinosaurs think you can do no wrong with keg beer which is all the same, all the time, wherever you go. It isn’t, it’s exactly the same as cask beer, there are good ones, average ones and many poor examples. It still needs looking after too. If you have it hanging around too long, or ship it over long distances without it being refrigerated, or even have it in the back of a hot van for too long, it loses all it’s vibrance. So much so, my favourite Jackhammer didn’t even give me a slight vibration. Usually Brewdog are pretty good with their cellar management and display the ‘kegged on’ dates, so I don’t know what had happened here, I certainly wasn’t going back for another
So, what else could I have had, apart from a dull and lifeless glass of Jackhammer? There were about 10 Brewdog beers on and 7 or 8 ‘Guests’, decent ones too. I note from their website, they’ve got Black Sheep Bitter on at the moment. They didn’t have it on my visit, so I’m not sure whether it’s cask ale or not? From what I saw elsewhere, it could well have been cask, which isn’t as unusual as one would think in Italy. Masham’s finest in Tuscany? Whatever next.
As ever, you were constantly reminded of Brewdog Equity for Punks issue #975 which just makes you think how much they are really worth, and is their crowdfunding really just another Ponzi scheme? Mind you, I did get my 5% discount.