To be fair, the Paul Pry had the potential to be the best pub in Worcester with it’s fine faience tiling in the quite grand lobby; turn right for the bar and left for a sort of lounge, laid out more as a dining room. I’m guessing the sinister side was once the tap room and the dexter the posh lounge bar?
There was no one in the left hand side anyway, there was no bar neither, so we turned right through a nice bit of wooden panelling and stained glass panels into an equally impressive room with a nice semi circular mahogany bar and reredos, more wooden panelling, a tiled fire place set in a wooden and mirrored mantel, etched glass and acres of terrazzo flooring.
The Grade II listed building is much older than the late Victorian interior according to an article in the local Worcester News which says it’s 200 years old? I couldn’t see that myself and I’m sticking with late Victorian.
Mind you the October 2018 article by Pub Spy reckoned it’s got a shot at reclaiming it’s 2014 Worcester CAMRA POTY title. I’m not sure exactly how the reviewer could ascertain this from their pint of Amstel and a de-constructed pizza?
If Pub Spy had chanced a pint of cask ale she/he would know it hasn’t a cat in hells chance of getting any POTY accolade. With warm beer it shouldn’t really be in the Good Beer Guide, I gave my Salopian Dr Pice a 2 on NBSS, it might have been good if it had been anywhere near the right temperature, or cooler. They also had XT – Animal Brewing London Porter and a house ale Paul Pry.
The Paul Pry ale is brewed by the Teme Valley Brewery at Knightwick. The pub used to boast it’s own Pope brewery ales, as it’s owned by the Pope family, however they had to close their brewery after a fire. Maybe it’s the ex-copper in me, but I’m always suspicious of commercial fires; brewers who can’t keep decent ale is worrying too. Mrs C had the right idea and went for the Arbor Zero Zero.
Sticking to the shit sandwich model of appraisal, I’m now going to tell you there was a beautiful Tintin-esque terrier called Alfie, complete with dog blanket, food, water, toys the lot. What a smashing little dog and the barman had to be warned to keep an eye on Mrs C as we left, she’d taken a proper shine to the little chap. What? No. No idea what class of dog it was, ask Hergé. Bit like a Fox Terrier without the coloured patches.
The bar man himself was a smashing lad, chatting to his customers and generally ticking all the ‘top barman’ boxes. There was even a guy with a Sam Smith’s t-shirt propping the bar up. I asked if he worked in one of their pubs. He said he didn’t, but he’d worked at the brewery a long time ago, hence his shirt wasn’t really black anymore. Nice to see amongst the lunch time drinkers, and says lots about a pub, were the two lady drinkers who’d ordered food.
Verdict; Must visit for the spectacular interior and proper pubbiness, but stay off the cask ale if you do.