Pie & Ale has been a bit of a slow burner. From the team that brought us Apotheca, its out of the way location at the end of Lever Street makes it more a destination bar rather than a place attracting passers & so it’s taken time to feature on most people’s radars. That’s not altogether been a bad thing however as this has allowed the team to evolve the venue and find its niche in an ever crowding market place. 

Back when the venue first opened its doors it was limited to the space they now call the main bar, a relatively narrow space with some high tables in front of the bar, and a few more intimate tables round the back. Since then there has been the addition of the mezzanine which is a perfect space for group gatherings, and the beer hall complete with big screens for sports fans which is where we found ourselves watching the 6 Nations on our last visit.

The drinks selection is dominated by their beer offerings, with as many as eight cask ales on offer in the main bar and there are also some keg selections and a plethora of bottles and cans in the fridges. As can be the case with the more niche selections, prices can get a bit high for the more specialist options, however that is tempered by the very drinkable house brew “Yippie Pie Ale” available for a bargain £2.50. For the non beer drinker there’s a decent selection of wines available as well as a back bar featuring plenty of choices for the discerning shorts drinkers out there.

The food menu as you can imagine is heavily dominated by pies. Whilst not the only dishes on offer, they are certainly the main attraction & definitely worth the trip. Made fresh on the premises, the inventive fillings make for mouth wateringly difficult choices come feeding time. As standard the pies are served with regulation mashed potatoes, but there is an option to upgrade to wedges or my favourite “Dirty Mash”, regular mash with the addition of bacon & cheese; dirty indeed, but oh so worth it.

P&A has become a bit of a regular haunt for the crew here at TNQR, and it’s easy to see why; good ale, great food & the ability to shout feverishly at our favourite sports teams on the TV. Can a venue be all things to all men? Probably not, some people are just too fussy, however P&A is giving it a good go & does exactly what it says on the tin.

Pie & Ale

Classification: Bar & Beer Hall

Food: Pies, Pies, Pies

Drinks: Real Ale, Craft Beer, wine & spirits

Price: ££

Related City Centre establishments: Apotheca, Dough, Bakerie

Bongo rating: 8/10