Address : 48-52 Canal Street, Nottingham, NG1 7EH
Copenhagen. Amsterdam. Bruges. Any of these places would be nicer than an afternoon by the Nottingham Canal. Or would they? Because here is a fine example of waterside drinking that breaks the dated stereotype of Nottingham “lads” getting tanked up on alcopops, taking their shirts off and jumping into the water for a double shot of salmonella.
The Canal House lives up to its name, quite literally, by having part of the waterway inside the bar. Having parked up your pedalo, you’ll be greeted by a wide selection of Castle Rock’s own fine brews, a few guest ales and enough craft beers to warrant a “worldwide” label on the menu.
Along with the huge main bar area, there’s ample outdoor seating stretching around the canal edge, part of which is well covered so you can even enjoy a beer in the pouring rain. There’s also a sizeable upstairs function room.
Music? The in house sound system pumps out stuff to keep you occupied. Occasional gigs and special festivals are held in the upstairs room.
Food? After several years of only serving pizzas, a fuller menu of pub favourites is now offered.
Customers? A mahoosive after work crowd dominates the bar on a sunny Friday afternoon, otherwise it’s a full range of sensible folk with the kids kept at bay by the bouncers.
Opinion? “Quirky” can all too often mean “shite” but not here. Its actual canal-inside-the-house credentials gives this place a proper stamp of unique. Despite the dingy colour of the water, there’s rarely a pong at the bar. Three weeks’ notice required to use the toilets which are depressingly on the top floor.
Getting here : NCT Green and Blue lines, Trent Barton Cotgrave, Villager, Keyworth and Mainline – all to Carrington Street. Nottingham Station (East Midlands, Cross Country and Northern services, NET Tram), then a five minute walk.
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