Tuesday 31 January 2017

Now and Then, former Travellers Rest PH, Tafarnaubach

The former Rhymney Brewery pub, the Travellers Rest, Merthyr Road, Tafarnaubach is now a private residence but has kept the name.

Now and Then, Prince of Wales Inn, Princetown

The Hobby Horse logo on the Prince of Wales Inn, Merthyr Road, Princtown, Tarfanubach, NP22 3AE, has actually got bigger since the old photo was taken in the 1960's!

Monday 30 January 2017

Now and Then, former Star Inn, Pontyberem

The former Star Inn, Heol Y Parc, Pontyberem which may have had a connection to Oliver Cromwell and is now a private residence.

Sunday 29 January 2017

Now & Then, former Gwendraeth Arms, Pontyates

The former Gwendraeth Arms PH, on the corner of Heol Llanelli/B4317 is now a fish and chip shop. The former Rhymney Brewery pub appears to have closed around 2004.

Saturday 28 January 2017

Friday 27 January 2017

Now and Then, former Wellington PH, Nelson

The former Wellington Inn, High Street, Nelson is now the Wellington Stores, Rhymney Brewery Hobby Horse sign can be seen on the old picture

Thursday 26 January 2017

Now & Then, Lord Nelson Inn, Nelson

The Lord Nelson Inn, Commercial Street, Nelson, Caerphilly UA. The inn predates the village of Nelson, to which it gave its name.

Wednesday 25 January 2017

Now & Then, Ferndale PH, Ferndale

One of the few colour photos in the collection of former Rhymney Brewery pubs, The Ferndale, Duffryn Street, Ferndale, Rhondda Cynon Taff UA. Photo above appears to be from the 1970s, the Whitbread Tankard can be seen hanging on the building. Not too sure if the pub is still open or not?

Tuesday 24 January 2017

Now & Then, former Cymmer Hotel, Cymmer

The former Rhymney Brewery pub, the Cymmer Hotel, Pleasant View, Cymmer, Neath Port Talbot UA, looks rather neglected, boarded up in these 1960s photographs, Today it is a self-catering accommodation known as Rose Cottage

Now & Then, Avondale Hotel, Cymmer

The Avondale Hotel in Avon Street, Cymmer, Neath Port Talbot UA has changed it's name to the Welsh spelling Afandale Hotel and the history below is taken from it's website. Another former Rhymney Brewery pub
"The Afandale was built in 1877, originally a hotel in the heart of the bustling mining village of Cymmer. It then became a pub, indeed one of many pubs in Cymmer which on a Tuesday night was one of the most popular areas in South Wales. Following its many years as a pub, the Afandale became a gym and boxing club. The Afandale then became a pottery and a craft shop until the 1980/90’s. Finally it has now turned a full circle and become an accommodation provider again."

Now & Then, former Farmers Arms, Cymmer

The former Farmers Arms, 12 Avon Street. Cymmer, Neath Port Talbot UA, is now the Cymmer Coronation Club. Another former Rhymney Brewery pub, unusually for this collection of 1960s photos we have 5 different views of the pub

Monday 23 January 2017

Now & Then, former Prince of Wales PH, Pontllanfraith

The former Prince of Wales PH, Penmaen Road, Pontllanfraith, Blackwood, now known as Riverside House

Cardiff to get a new micropub

With the closure of the Gravity Station in Barrack Lane, Cardiff has been missing a micropub. Yes I realise the Gravity Station did move to Womanby Street but it appears to have closed before Christmas and not reopened. So step forward Baptist Minister James Karran who has decided to change a former hairdressing saloon into St Canna's Alehouse, named after the saint who gave her name to the areas of Canton and Pontcanna.

St Canna's Alehouse is situated at 42 Llandaff Road, opposite the Butcher's Arms pub and James hopes to have the pub open in March, in the meantime keep up to date with what's happening via the pub's Facebook page.

There's an article on Walesonline about the pub as well

Now & Then the former Nanthir Hotel, Blaengarw

The Nanthir Hotel, Blaengarw, a former Rhymney pub was demolished in the 1970s and Nanthir Lodge built in it's place

Sunday 22 January 2017

Micropub to open in Newport

A former computer shop in Newport is set to be turned into the City's first ever micro-pub. The Cellar Door at 5 Clytha Park Road will be the first pub in this part of the City, even in it's Victorian heyday there were no pubs in this area of Newport. The application for change of use was passed by the council earlier this month, although one local resident decided to be a NIMBY, Not sure if the moaner meant the empty building next door or the pharmacy when he complained, "There are plenty of drinking venues not only next door to that address but less than 200 yards into town centre". Still it's good for Newport and for brewers and cidermakers that there is a new independent outlet in the City. Good luck to Paul Tully in running this micropub. The pub won't be doing food but a few doors away is a fantastic burger restaurant, Meat, well worth visiting.

Best Breweries in Wales

According to the geosocial networking service Untappd, the following are the best breweries in Wales at the moment:

1. Crafty Devil Brewing Co
2. Tiny Rebel Brewing Co
3. Tenby Brewing Company
5. Hopcraft Brewing
6. Grey Trees Brewery
7. Mad Dog Brewing Co
8. Gwynt y Ddraig
9. Heavy Industry Brewing
10. Purple Moose Brewery (Bragdy Mws Piws)
11. Otley
12. Hallets
13. Glamorgan Brewing Co
14. Mantle
15. Untapped Brewing Company
16. Gower Brewery
17. Mumbles Brewery
18. Cwrw Ial Community Brewing Company
19. Big Hand Brewing Co
20. Hafod Brewing Company
21. VOG Brewery
22. Bluestone Brewing Co.
23. Great Orme Brewery
24. Bragdy Twt Lol
25. Boss Brewing Company
26. Tomos Watkin and Sons Ltd.
27. Celt Brewing
28. Tudor Brewery
29. Brains Craft Brewery
30. Conwy Brewery
31. Kite Brewery
32. Brains
33. Rhymney Brewery
34. Evan Evans
35. Monty's Brewery
36. Facer's
37. Brecon Brewing
38. Felinfoel Brewery Co Ltd
39. Plassey Brewery

According to Untappd, "A brewery must have at least 1,000 ratings and at least 5 beers in their portfolio to qualify for this list." Their ratings explainer is explained here.
Impressive that Evan Evans brewery, run by former gay nightclub boss Simon Buckley came in as only the sixth worst brewery in Wales, given the poor quality of their beers I would have thought they would have come in much lower!

Over at Ratebeer, the list is somewhat different with the top 50 beers being dominated by Tiny Rebel

1              Lines Line ACD - Farmhouse IPA India Pale Ale (IPA)       
2              Lines Line FA - Primary Brett Imperial stout Imperial Stout           
3              Lines Line CA - Nelson Saison Saison                       
4              Lines Line A - Dry hopped IPA India Pale Ale (IPA)                            
5              Tiny Rebel / Arbor Bonsai India Pale Ale (IPA)                    
6              Tiny Rebel Tiny Batch Baby’s Got a Temper Imperial IPA                               
7              Lines / Trois Dames Date Line Saison                      
8              Tiny Rebel Loki Lite Session IPA
9              Tiny Rebel Hadouken India Pale Ale (IPA)            
10           Tiny Rebel / Dark Star Rebel Alliance Saison                        
11           Lines / Fyne Ales Green Lines Saison Saison                        
12           Tiny Rebel XLPA Golden Ale/Blond Ale                  
13           Crafty Devil You Love Us India Pale Ale (IPA)                      
14           Tiny Rebel Clwb Tropicana India Pale Ale (IPA)   
15           Tiny Rebel Tiny Batch In and Around the Mouth India Pale Ale (IPA)        
16           Tiny Rebel Dirty Stop Out Stout 279        
17           Tiny Rebel Frambuzi Sour/Wild Ale         
18           Lines Line AE - Munich Table Beer Specialty Grain            
19           Hopcraft Sharks Against Surfers American Pale Ale          
20           Tiny Rebel The Vader Shuffle Porter                      
21           Hopcraft A Good Rogering Black IPA       
22           Otley mOtley Brew Imperial IPA               
23           Otley Oxymoron Black IPA                          
24           Hopcraft Devilfish Ink Black IPA                
25           Hopcraft Citraic American Pale Ale                          
26           Hopcraft Graveyard Eyes (5.3%) Porter  19          
27           Tiny Rebel / Weird Beard Dirty Perle StoutNew 
28           Tiny Rebel Stay Puft Stout           
29           Tiny Rebel / Dugges Pina Colada Pale Ale American Pale Ale        
30           Tiny Rebel Urban IPA India Pale Ale (IPA)             
31           Tiny Rebel Cereal Killer Session IPA                         
32           Tiny Rebel Cali American Pale Ale            
33           Tiny Rebel The Full Nelson American Pale Ale                    
34           Tiny Rebel Bass Drop Imperial Stout       
35           Tiny Rebel Loki Black IPA                              
36           Tiny Rebel Cwtch Amber Ale                      
37           Tiny Rebel Beat Box American Pale Ale                 
38           Tiny Rebel Sonic Boom India Pale Ale (IPA)                          
39           Hafod Dubbel Abbey Dubbel                     
40           Waen Snowball Sweet Stout      
41           Tiny Rebel Gin & Juice Spice/Herb/Vegetable    
42           Hopcraft Citra Plus American Pale Ale    
43           Heavy Industry 77 Amber Ale    
44           Tiny Rebel Grand Regal (Canadian Bourbon) Imperial Stout         
45           Tiny Rebel Billabong American Pale Ale                 
46           Hopcraft Mate Spawn and Die American Pale Ale             
47           Tiny Rebel Lupulin Fiasco Saison                               
48           Hopcraft Spanish Main Stout
49           Tiny Rebel Tiny Batch Hot Box Smoked
50           Hopcraft Oceanic American Pale Ale

Over at Beer Advocate, there is no separate section for Wales, merely a UK & Ireland section and no Welsh breweries make the top 100

Mild Brecon Brewing - Dark Beacons
Bitter Monty's - Old Jailhouse
Best Bitter Tiny Rebel - Cwtch
Strong Bitter Greytrees - Afghan IPA
Old Ale Heavy Industry - Collaborator
Barley Wines Monty's Magnitude
Speciality Purple Moose - Ysgawen
Porter Tudor - Black Rock
Stout Boss Black
Champion Beer of Wales 2016 Grand Champions
Gold - Tudor - Black Rock
Silver - Boss Black
Bronze - Monty's Old Jailhouse

Three lists of very different results!

Now and Then, former Snatchwood Inn, Abersychan

The former Snatchwood Inn, Snatchwood Road, Abersychan has now been converted into 2 houses. The above photo shows the pub in the Rhymney and Crosswells livery, before that it was a Buchan's Brewery pub

Saturday 21 January 2017

Now & Then Church Inn, Bedwellty

Another former Rhymney and before that a Andrew Buchan's Brewery pub, the Church Inn, Bedwellty Road, Blackwood, Caerphilly UA. NP12 0BD. The Church Inn supposedly dates back to the sixteenth century.

A short distance away is the New Inn, which has kept it's Rhymney Hobby Horse sign
Above photo is © Copyright Jaggery and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence.

Friday 20 January 2017

Now & Then, former Green Meadow PH, Troedyrhiw

The former green Meadow PH at 28 Bridge Street Troedyrhiw was renamed The Silver Bullet some years ago

Now and Then, former Gelli PH, Abergwynfi

The former Gelli pub, Commercial Street, Abergwynfi, A former Buchan's Brewery pub, shown here after the take-over of Rhymney Brewery by Whitbread.

Thursday 19 January 2017

Now and Then, former Traveller's Rest, Aberbargoed

The former Travellers' Rest pub, Bedwellty Road, Aberbargoed, a former Rhymney Brewery pub. Originally owned by Buchan's Brewery

Now and Then, former Greyhound PH, Aberbargoed

Another former Rhymney pub, this time, the former Greyhound pub, Bedwellty Road, Aberbargoed. Now demolished along with the railway viaduct behind it. Originally owned by Buchan's Brewery

Raglan Cider Wassail

Raglan Cider Mill will be holding a Wassail on Saturday 28th January, with dancing, singing and music. Cider bar all evening and a hog roast. £5 entry (£4 to Welsh Perry & Cider Society Members, U16s free.
Address is Tynewydd Farm, Llanarth, Usk, NP15 2LU

Wednesday 18 January 2017

Now and Then, former Horse & Groom, Maesteg

The former Horse & Groom, 128 Commercial Street, Maesteg, as it was, above, as a Rhymney Brewery pub and below on Google Street View as it is today, split into 2, a pizza take-away and an optician. The modern Rhymney Brewery today has a bar in Maesteg, The Federation Bar, which is almost opposite this former pub.


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