Pub review of the month: The Sir John Borlase Warren

NottsNight is all about great places to drink for grown ups. They love a good pint of real ale, attentive service and no silly gimmicks. Here every month, you’ll find one of their hand-picked independent reviews, including the unique Notts Trumps, giving you essential information about each venue. Explore more on the Notts Night website and follow them on Twitter.

Address : 1 Ilkeston Road, Canning Circus, Nottingham, NG7 3GD.

Legend has it that the founder of Wetherspoons – when at the University in Nottingham – based his vision for pubs on the Borlase. But don’t let that put you off. Because the Sir John is just about everything a ‘spoons isn’t. For starters, it’s rather good.

Under the management of Lincoln Green, this place has re-established itself as a real destination pub, enjoyed by visitors and locals alike. Its sprawling bar offers up to twelve beers at a time; with a ‘tap takeover’ to the left featuring guest breweries.

The Sir John has dominated the Canning Circus scene for years, but the owners haven’t become complacent. Spring 2018 has seen a substantial revamp for the pub’s mahoosive beer garden – including a micro-pub, The Dog and Thief in a former storage outhouse concentrating on craft beers.

There’s also a healthy collection of whiskies – and what’s claimed to be the city’s largest selection of gin.

Music? Occasional acoustic acts which frankly take up perfectly good seating space in the main bar. Special events include an annual Gin and Jazz festival, plus entertainment during the Sir John’s several beer festivals.

Food? After a period of uncertainty, food is now served seven days a week. Pub classics, pizzas and a Sunday lunch.

Customers? Wide and varied – the proximity to the Park attracts the well heeled 30-50 somethings while in the summer the garden is a magnet for the after work crowd from the Ropewalk area. It’s also increasingly becoming a favourite for students.

Opinion? The recent revamp has made the Sir J almost too popular during busy weekend periods. But the management usually ensure the bar is well staffed – and the new craft beer bar creates a good overflow area and something a bit different.

 © NottsNight 2018

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