A visit to York usually means trying to cram as many pubs into the day or days as possible. Brigantes, The Three Legged Mare, The Blue Bell, The Rook and Gaskill are just a few of the places I've bent my elbow.
This time I couldn't be bothered to crawl for a couple of reasons; it was freezing cold and I needed to sit by the warmth of a fire, plus I was heading to a pub that was going to have about 32 beers on draught.
OK, my fellow drinkers and I did have to visit a couple of other places too. Firstly, the Trembling Madness shop on Stonegate to pick up some bottles. This shop improves its stock on each visit. Loads of The Kernel, Buxton and Mikkeller amongst UK, Belgium and US beers.
We also bent our knees in Pivni. You probably know Pivni, it's like the Sheffield Tap in miniature. I don't mean it looks like the Sheffield Tap, I mean it sells the kind of beers you'd also find at the Sheffield Tap. So we drank Summer Wine Brewery Diablo (keg), Magic Rock Dark Arts (cask), Magic Rock High Wire (keg), and Pivovar Broumov Opat Kvasničák Coriander lager. That lager was one of the highlights of GBBF this year, so we were really chuffed to see it here.
It was hard to drag ourselves away from Pivni, but we managed somehow.
York Tap was busy. Travellers with suitcases, Christmas shoppers, professional alcofrolics. All kinds of folk.
Magic Rock Cannonball, Magic Rock Curious NZ, Cantillon Gueze, Black Isle Chilli Porter, Thornbridge Raven, Magic Rock Rockstar, some Tempest beers, the usual Bernard lagers. All served from a huge central circular bar. I never had to wait longer than 15 seconds to be served. These guys are good.
I will always have a soft spot for the original Tap in Sheffield, but the York one with its stained glass windows and domes has an opulence that cannot fail to impress. You've got to go and see it for yourselves, and spend a few hours working your way around that circular bar.