We reported recently on the departure of landlord Steve Crook from Manchester's City Arms. As we went to press last month, Steve's replacement was still unpacking boxes, but a couple of weeks later, Opening Times called in to meet him.
24 year old Dave Pattison originally hails from Herefordshire where he began his pub career at The Balance Inn in Luston, 25 miles west of Worcester. Dave swapped rural life for city living in 2008 when he arrived in Manchester and began working as a barman at The Briton's Protection. From The Briton's Protection, he moved to the Town Hall Tavern initially learning the trade from experienced manager Nick Nugent and then laterly under the legendary "Greek" George Archonodo. Earlier this year he returned to the Briton's Protection when it came under the same ownership as The City Arms before being appointed manager of the Kennedy Street pub in August.
Providing continuity at the Good Beer Guide listed pub is Jeni McHugh who has been at the pub just short of 9 years - Jeni should be familiar to both regular and occassional visitors over the last 9 months having stepped up to run the pub when Steve Crook was injured earlier this year including being on hand to accept the branch's LocAle Pub Of The Year award for 2013 which was followed two months later by the Trafford & Hulme Pub Of The Year 2014 accolade.
When asked about his plans for the pub, Dave replied simply "If it ain't broke….". On the physical side, a bit of tidy up and a lick of paint will be the extent of changes. Behind the bar, ale drinkers will see little change - why would you change a formula that has seen 12 consecutive Good Beer Guide entries. Moorhouses beers remain the pub's top sellers, where they are joined by LocAle's from the likes of Hornbeam, Merlin and RedWillow. Real cider remains on the back bar while a few more whiskeys have been added to the range and there is now a selection of 19 different gins on offer.
We wish David, Jeni and the team all the best for the future and trust this great pub is in safe hands.