The Victoria Arms

January 10, 2010

I know this is theoretically a Leicestershire blog, but when you find a pub as good as The Victoria Arms, it seems churlish to keep quiet about it. Sited immediately next to Beeston rail station on the edge of Nottingham, this is a classic old-skool boozer,  a freehouse offering a great range of beers and an extraordinary wine list. It keeps one cosy, traditional bar with another used primarily as a  restaurant. Use of mobile phones is strictly prohibited.  A big group of us had a lovely day-long session yestersday, including a break for food which is served all day long. There’s an immense blackboard with an big selection of hearty, original offerings,  with an especially wide vegetarian selection. My rabbit and cider casserole was top-notch homestyle cooking for a snowy winter afternoon – a rich sauce with chunks of gammom soaked up a big pile of spring onion mash.

It inevitably got us thinking about Leicester pubs. There’s some good beer pubs – the Criterion, the Swan and Rushes and the Ale Wagon spring to mind,  while it seems the food offering of the  new Almanack is going to prove popular – but we don’t really have the perfect combination of a characterful building, serious approach to beer and  good value and good quality food. 

If  there’s any pub in the UK that you could pick up and plonk down in the centre of Leicester (or your home town)  – what would it  be?

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