Thursday 18 April 2024

The Lucky Shag

I'd previously been advised by a friend who visits Perth fairly frequently, not to miss the Lucky Shag pub. Not that you can miss it really, as it sits in a prominent position at Perth's river front, just where all the cruise boats set off from and return to.  So, having just returned to the river front from a cruise, it would not have been easy to miss as we more or less disembarked into it.  The ornithological amongst you will gather it is named after a seabird.  Those of a dirty mind may not.

This is quite a big pub with a very large river terrace which was well filled by workers enjoying a post work happy hour drink.   Incidentally, in most parts of Australia, happy hours between five and six o'clock are common. Sadly, very few seem to move much outside that time, though we did find the odd one, so best find one you like at six and settle in. The format varies. Some offer reduced prices on certain drinks or all of them, some give a pint for the price of a schooner and so on.  Some don't at all.  I think in this case it was around 3 dollars less for a pint, which was the most common measure in Western Australia, I'm told this is because of the proliferation of Poms in that neck of the woods.

So, a pint it was.  The unfamiliar nature of the beers had me settling for a locally brewed pale ale, Nail Brewery Pale was hazy and tasty in the New World style. At 4.7%, it slipped down well. E began her on/off love affair with Northern Crisp as we chatted to our travelling companions and watched the very busy staff fly up and down the bar. Our hotel was only a reasonable walk away and had a sort of Irish Bar next door, where we ate and finished the night off. It didn't seem very Irish to me, but given that it was called Fenians, I guess that was the kind of clue as to the aspiration if not the actuality. It was a decent enough pub though and there, usefully, I realised that I don't care for James Squire Lashes, a beer which seemed to crop up everywhere.

I also learned in Perth that Castlemaine XXXX is still a thing, that every bar has an XPA (Extra Pale Ale - An Extra Pale Ale is a beer style similar to a Pale Ale with a larger amount of pale malt than a conventional Pale Ale, which gives the beer a paler, brighter colour and crisper flavour) and that draft alcoholic ginger beer is very much an Australian thing.  I also increasingly observed - and this is a very good thing - that hazy beers are very much the exception, but available.

So, how much does it all cost? Despite being ticked off on Twitter by the Beer Police, I can reveal that pints were generally around AUS$13/14, with schooners being nearer $10.  There were more or less two dollars to the pound, so broadly halve it. This did vary, but two schooners could be relied on to be around £11 though like anywhere, it varied.

No worse than London or even Manchester City Centre pricewise really.

We returned to the Lucky Shag the next day and enjoyed a bit more room, but this is one busy and friendly pub and very much worth a visit.

 As I go through this sojorn, we'll learn a bit more about Australian pub culture, some great pubs to visit and beer measures. (Which aren't as striaghtforward as you might think.)

1 comment:

Curmudgeon said...

The "Happy Hours" are a hangover from the notorious Six O'Clock Swill, when all the pubs closed at 6 pm, so workers rushed to down as much beer as possible in the hour after finishing work.