Sheep, ducks and beer in the Peak District

Since I got distracted with a couple of reviews this week, I’m going to continue with what we got up to on our trip to the north. After the total carnage of Resistanz festival I was feeling a little fragile once more. In the absence of good beer, I tend to go for spirits and since I was determined to stay up to dance until 4am, Jagerbombs and JD and Cokes seemed like the most sensible choice at the time. This seemed less sensible in the morning when I remembered we were going to stay with the OH’s sister and brother-in-law for the rest of the week. Needless to say, Monday was a pretty quiet evening (well, for me anyway – the OH still managed to chug down a couple of tins of Old Speckled Hen). Thankfully, by Tuesday, I had bounced back from self-inflicted certain death and was ready to go exploring so we drove out to the Peak District. First stop was Bakewell, home of the famous Bakewell Tart. Since I seem to have had a sheltered little life, I hadn’t previously realised the genuine article was actually known as a Bakewell Pudding. I had to try the local delicacy of course so we stopped in a lovely little cafe for a very civilised tea and pudding. Surprisingly, the Bakewell Pudding is a totally different thing to the tarts sold by Mr Kipling – try it if you can!

Baaad sheep - always in the way!

So on from Bakewell, we headed to Ladybower resevoir where our attempts to have a walk were almost thwarted by a gang of sheep charging down the road! Then on the way back from our reservoir stroll I was attacked by a duck! I was trying to feed him and he bit me. The little thug even took a run-up. We had a really lovely walk and enjoyed some spectacular scenary, but perhaps he was trying to tell me something. Maybe we needed to get to a pub. Luckily, we weren’t far from the rather lovely Ladybower Inn where they serve a selection of fine local ale. Since my shocking discovery that Bakewell Pudding is not a tart, I thought it appropriate to try the Bakewell Best Bitter (4.2%ABV) from Peak Ales. It turned out to be a pretty good choice, golden and full-flavored with a tight, frothy head. There was

Those ducks ain't touching this!

some honey and floral hops in the aroma and the flavour was cerealy with a bitter finish – pretty spot-on for some light refreshment post-walk. The OH went for a rather delicious Bradfield Farmers Blond (4%ABV) which we were quite excited to see since we only ever see Bradfield occasionally in our little corner of the country. We then went on to discover it’s a common favorite on the pumps around Sheffield, but it was still nice to see.

So, after our eventful day of walking and run-ins with the local water-fowl, the perfect ending would be a nice beer or two but we didn’t want to go too far from the house. It’s just as well that the streets of Sheffield seem to be lined with amazing pubs and we merely had to stroll around the corner to find ourselves at the Thornebridge brewery pub, the gorgeous Hallamshire. Find out what awesomeness was imbibed in the next installment…

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