Scotland Ale, "Now We Are Talking!"

"Cheers, Here's to You!"

Edinburgh Ale

One of the first things we did when we got to Edinburgh was go to a pub. We ordered an ale... oh my, slurp slurp slurp and then it was gone.

Never had we drank anything quite like it... creamy, smooth, velvety yum. We had heard that Ale was something special - dang it if the rumors weren’t spot on.

The reason we heard is that ale is brewed locally, usually within a few miles of the pub and always kept in a keg. I guess it keeps fermenting in the keg until it is all gone...

But being thorough researchers Gary and I tried Ale throughout the city - each ale turned out to be spectacular and each so very different. However we still were not totally satisfied that all ales were great so we continued to sample this brew where ever we went. Here is a sampling of the great pubs we found through out Scotland.

If there would be one conclusion from our research it would be a wish that someone would brew ale  near our house :)



Edinburgh Pubs

Ye Old Golf Tavern or the 6th Hole is the oldest golf pub in Edinburgh, perhaps Scotland.  It was established in 1456.
Ye Old Golf Tavern or the 6th Hole is the oldest golf pub in Edinburgh, perhaps Scotland. It was established in 1456.
Grass Market was the first pub where we tried ale.
Grass Market was the first pub where we tried ale.
The lad who pulled our pints.
The lad who pulled our pints.
Who could not raise a pint to the Skye Terrier, Bobby?
Who could not raise a pint to the Skye Terrier, Bobby?
They even made a statue in his honor.
They even made a statue in his honor.
The lovely lass who pulled our draft.
The lovely lass who pulled our draft.
Half Hung Maggy is a sad sad story... only truly appreciated with some ale.
Half Hung Maggy is a sad sad story... only truly appreciated with some ale.
He told us the sad sad story...
He told us the sad sad story...

Innverness

This was one of our funniest experiences.  We were just wandering around the streets of Inverness when we saw this building and it's door.  We both love architecture and take a lot of pictures of strange things, so when we saw that it was a pub we just had to try out the door.  Once inside we ordered a pint. A short time later Lee and a few of his friends sat down with us - he was quite friendly however was very perplexed at why we were drinking at a local bar. When I answered it was because of the door, he thought I was just goofing with him... so finally I said it was because the beer was cheaper than the tourist bar.  With that he laughed and said we were all right!

Innverness - The local Bar

Beautiful design... loved the look
Beautiful design... loved the look
The door was incredible... a true circular antique revolving entry... so we entered
The door was incredible... a true circular antique revolving entry... so we entered
Doug, this Ale is for you.  It is a Johnston brew.
Doug, this Ale is for you. It is a Johnston brew.
Our new friends... Lee and Crystal.
Our new friends... Lee and Crystal.

Two Oldest Bars in Stirling

Oldest Bar in Stirling
Oldest Bar in Stirling
Edith was kind enough to show us how to draw a proper pint.
Edith was kind enough to show us how to draw a proper pint.
Brenda invited us behind the Whistlebinkies bar... some name, huh!  Say that three times in a row.
Brenda invited us behind the Whistlebinkies bar... some name, huh! Say that three times in a row.
Ok, this time we just posed... next time the real thing.
Ok, this time we just posed... next time the real thing.

Dumfries, They Do Love Robert Burns!

The travel pattern Gary and I feel most comfortable with is to spend two nights in a city and then move on. What we usually do is on the day we drive to the new city we tour on the way and arrive in late afternoon or early evening.

Once checked in we walk the city - checking everything out. It is at this time we try the local pubs. Our favorite pubs have been the oldest or ones with very unusual names or stories. In Dumfries it turned out to be the Globe Inn... we had no idea what was in store for us when we entered... Jane Brown.

She was amazing. She was an authority on Robert Burns, she saw that we were new to the bar, so she gave us a guided tour - showed us where he drank, the windows he wrote his poetry on and where he sat. Then she recited some of his poems, told us to go to the bar while she changed clothes and then proceeded to teach Gary how to pull a proper pint of ale.

What a marvelous greeting and we hadn't been in Dumfries more than 20 minutes - some days are so very special!

Dumfries

Here is the globe... it was Robert Burn's favorite watering hole.  It was established in 1610.
Here is the globe... it was Robert Burn's favorite watering hole. It was established in 1610.
This establishment was 150 years old before Robert Burns made it his own.
This establishment was 150 years old before Robert Burns made it his own.
Here is his favorite room and chair.
Here is his favorite room and chair.
Jane Brown greeted us as soon as we entered the pub... in addition to giving Gary lessons on how to pull a proper pint she gave us an amazing guided tour.
Jane Brown greeted us as soon as we entered the pub... in addition to giving Gary lessons on how to pull a proper pint she gave us an amazing guided tour.
Gary finishing up a successful draw.
Gary finishing up a successful draw.
Success, such sweetness.
Success, such sweetness.

Comments 6 comments

jim gulian 6 years ago

no wonder you're having such a good time.


Merle and Allene Niehaus 6 years ago

I totally agree with Jim Gulian -- no wonder you're having such a good time!!!!!!! And I must say, you look quite glamorous, especially in the shades.

Are you walking several miles a day to get rid of those calories or how?

We'll just have to get over to your place and see all the photos up close after you get home!!


GPSWorldTraveler profile image

GPSWorldTraveler 6 years ago from Washington State, USA Author

:) Hmmmmm. Then there is the "Whisky Trail"!

We do walk a lot - on great days 5 - 10 miles, the rest of the time around 3. This is our only salvation - otherwise we will be coming home way more rollie pollie!


Marian 6 years ago

Have to say I like Gary pulling the pint - great shot - and to see the revolving door! if Hubpages is doing its stuff, this entry should earn you a whole lot more from the brewing industry than $100 every 18 months... are you listening Hubpages? great to see the 'other' side of you both!!! I think our local cheer was mild by comparison! catchup soon x M


Gordon Hamilton profile image

Gordon Hamilton 6 years ago from Wishaw, Lanarkshire, United Kingdom

This Hub brings back memories! Although I am from the West of Scotland (now back living there) I have loved Edinburgh for years and actually lived in two different parts of the city for a time. I know a lot of the pubs which you feature and actually recognise one of the barmen from a pub I used to frequent on Rose Street (just can't remember the name of it for now, believe it or not!)

Scottish ales are truly something different, provided that you always check the strength of them in advance! Some of them are incredibly strong and can provide for a nasty surprise when you try to walk outside! :)

Glad you enjoyed our beer - look forward to reading about your whisky experiences! Did you visit Islay, the home of single malts?


Sufidreamer profile image

Sufidreamer 6 years ago from Sparti, Greece

Oooohhhh - you just made me very thirsty. I studied in Stirling, and spent many hours in Whistlebinkies and know the Settle Inn well. I also have great memories of long weekends in the Grassmarket, with a few smooth pints.

Thanks for the memories and I am glad that you enjoyed your trip.

Like Gordon, I am looking forward to your stories about the Whisky Trail - I am trying to persuade my partner to visit the Western Isles for a holiday. The official reason is to see the Sea Eagles, but there might be an alternative, whisky-fuelled agenda planned ;)

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