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Top 10 micropubs in the Midlands and Shropshire

By Kirsten Rawlins | Best of | Published: | Last Updated:

The MA states 'a micropub is a small freehouse which listens to its customers, mainly serves cask ales, promotes conversation, shuns all forms of electronic entertainment and dabbles in traditional pub snacks'.

Whether you are a seasoned micropub veteran, a real ale connoisseur or even a micropub virgin, check out this list of the top 10 micropubs in the West Midlands and Shropshire:

Hail To The Ale - Claregate, Wolverhampton

This micropub opened its doors in September 2013 with the aim of making the Good Beer Guide within five years of opening.

They surpassed this goal by completing it in a year and were named the 2015 pub of the year in the West Midlands county and region, and Wolverhampton, by the Campaign for Real Ale (CAMRA) group. John Nightingale, secretary of the Wolverhampton branch of CAMRA, said: “It is a throwback to the old style of pub with good beer and conversation the main fundamentals.”

The former post office and furniture shop was converted by Morton Brewery. It sells one of their own beers from the Essington-based brewery and guest ales from surrounding breweries.

They open Thursday, Friday and Sunday 5pm to 10 pm and 12pm to 10pm on Saturdays, as well as the last Wednesday of every month for special events and themed evenings.

Visit their website here

Weavers Real Ale House - Kidderminster

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Rich Davies (a business partner) enjoys a pint at Weavers Real Ale House

This pub’s strict no lager policy is truly in keeping with the ethics of a traditional micropub; they serve only real ales, ciders, wines, whiskies, gin and soft drinks.

The dark wood panelling interior and old posters scattered across the walls really drive home the traditional feel.

They feature regularly changing beers alongside two regulars: Three Tuns XXX and Wye Valley Hereford Pale Ale, with a small food menu of pork pies and cobs.

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It opens 3pm to 10.30pm Monday through Thursday, 1pm to 10.30pm on Friday, 12pm to 10.30pm on Saturdays and 12pm to 10pm on Sundays, and is located only a short walk from the railway station.

CAMRA awarded it the Merit Award for Outstanding New Pub of the Year in 2013 and last year it became Wyre Forest Pub Of The Year 2016.

The Whippet Inn - Lichfield

This micropub opened in April 2014 on Tamworth Street and, within a year, they were awarded 2015 pub of the year for the Lichfield, Sutton and Tamworth branches of CAMRA and 2015 pub of the year for Staffordshire.

They keep four beers on the bar from small independent breweries and microbreweries within a 50-mile radius on constant rotation, with an aim to offer drinks not already available in Lichfield.

They also serve ciders, perries and fruit wines with traditional pub snacks available, as well as pies and cobs.

They open until 10pm Wednesday to Saturday and 5pm on Sunday when they offer a free cheese board.

Visit their website here

The Little Ale House - Bromsgrove

This Little Ale House serves Malvern Hills brewery’s Black Pear constantly and works with three resident breweries, from Ambridge, Bewdley and Prescott - each of which provide one changing beer.

The watering hole also has four taps set aside for a constant stream of ever-changing breweries’ beers. Punters can relax in their friendly pub or take-out cartons are available.

It is located on Worcester Road and opens 12pm to 10pm, Monday to Saturday, and until 5pm on Sundays.

Salopian Brewery - Hadnall

Wilf Nelson, managing director of Salopian Brewery, with one of their CAMRA awards granted to the business last year

On the first weekend of every month the Salopian Brewery’s micropub opens for customers to sample their real ales where they are made.

The brewery makes a range of CAMRA award winning real ales, IPAs and stouts.

The on-location watering hole is a very simple, no frills set-up with a rustic wood panelled bar, decorated only by bottled beers and beer taps.

Opening hours are Friday 3pm to 7pm and Saturday 12pm to 5pm.

For more on the micropub click here

The Pheasant Pub - Wellington

Owner Dave Goldingay and Telford Business Club chairwoman Kirsty Smallman at The Pheasant Pub and Brewhouse

Ironbridge Brewery and the Wrekin Brewing Company have been operating from a brewhouse located at the back of The Pheasant pub since May 2014, serving beers, bitters, IPAs and stouts straight from the source.

They also have a distillery on site making gins and moonshine and plan to add their first attempt at a cider to their repertoire.

It is decorated in a more modern way than other micropubs, but sticks to the principles of good beer and good chat without electronic distractions.

You can collect polypins, kegs or one litre bottles from the pub on Market Street to take home during normal opening times; 11am to 11pm everyday.

For more on the micropub click here

Stonehouse Brewery - Weston

This family-run business sells its range of Society of Independent Brewers (SIBA) award-winning beers in bottles all across the Midlands and further afield, but if you want to enjoy them from cask you have to visit the brewery’s on-site bar.

Despite national success with gold and silver winning beers, the independent Shropshire-based brewers say they have no intention of global dominance and plan to perfect the six beers they offer already.

The bar opens Monday to Thursday 9am to 5pm, Fridays 9am to 7pm and Saturdays 10am to 5pm.

Visit their website here

The Ludlow Brewing Company - Ludlow

Ludlow Brewing Company’s sells their six beers on site at their on and off-licence bar.

The bar itself sits directly alongside vats of mash tun, made using hops sourced locally from Lambswick Hop Farm near Tenbury Wells.

It sits inside a restored and re-purposed Victorian railway shed with a simple bar area and brewing equipment, reaching as high as the ceiling - providing a great atmosphere to relax and enjoy a pint.

They are located only a short stroll from the railway station on Station Drive.

Visit their website here

Barley Mow Inn - Trefonen

Barley Mow Inn

This pub in Oswestry serves three regular beers from the Offa’s Dyke Brewery, located next door, and one guest beer which usually comes from another local brewery.

Hops growing on the pub’s car park are used to make the beer next door in the brewery topped with a Grim Reaper weathervane.

It’s unique placement, beside the 8th century earthwork Offa’s Dyke, and low beamed ceilings give the pub a traditionally rural and cosy interior to relax with a pint.

A well beneath the bar can be illuminated upon request.

It is open 5pm to 8.30pm Tuesday to Saturday and 12pm to 3pm on Sundays.

All Nations - Madeley

Located on Coalport Road and steeped in history, the All Nations Pub brewed its own beer when it was first licenced in 1832 - and continues to do so today, 184 years on.

It has appeared in every issue of CAMRA’s Good Pub Guide since the first edition in 1974.

It has an open fire in winter and still keeps its authentic personality despite small refurbishments.

It also keeps to the authenticity of a micropub with no jukebox, no dartboard or pool table with entertainment coming in the form of drinking, eating and chatting.

They offer guest beers, together with regular beers from Shires Brewery which operates from the Brewhouse attached using old style recipes and methods for brewing.

Kirsten Rawlins

By Kirsten Rawlins
@kirsten_native

Online Entertainment Editor for the Express & Star, Shropshire Star and Native Monster. E-mail me kirsten.rawlins@nativemonster.co.uk, or phone 01902 319368

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