Last month we looked at the great beer scene that has developed in the ‘Heeley Triangle’ creating a beer destination away from the usual City Centre and Kelham Island circuits. This month we look at another part of Sheffield with a cluster of good pubs a short bus ride from town.
The two key bus corridors here are the 52/52a along the main road in Crookes and the 95 along the main road in Commonside and Walkley, supplemented by the less frequent route 31 which wends its way to Walkley via a more off-piste route!
It is walkable between all the pubs featured, however note there are hills involved. All pubs that serve real ale are listed, however due to space constraints we are just featuring those with the more interesting beer range.
More information about all the pubs can be found at www.whatpub.com.
COMMONSIDE (route 95)
The Closed Shop
Traditional friendly local in a residential setting. With a focus on customer service and traditional pub values. Taken over in 2013 by the team from the Rutland Arms and went through a major refurb. A wide range of ales and ciders is always available and the food is very good proper pub food. Weekly quiz each Wednesday and Sunday. 8 real ales available featuring Blue Bee Brewery and guests.
The Hallamshire House
Known as the “tardis” this small frontage pub has a snug, pool room, bar area leading through to a large lounge and oak panelled snooker room with full size table. Is now run by Thornbridge Brewery offering at least 5 of their cask ales plus guest beers and a wide range of bottled beers.
WALKLEY (routes 31,31a,95)
The Blake Hotel
At the top of a steep hill (pedestrian handholds provided), this community pub reopened as a free house in 2010 after seven years of closure. Extensively restored, it has retained many Victorian features, with original etched windows and mirrors. At the rear is a large decked garden. The five guest beers usually include a stout or porter, the majority from small independent breweries. The pub also provides probably the largest selection of whisky in Sheffield with over 200 available. No electronic games, TV or jukebox.
Walkley Beer Company
A small specialist beer shop that opens weekends only with a tasting bar offering the choice to drink inside. A choice of three cask beers are available with beer served on gravity, the range changes each weekend. There is also a craft keg line.
CROOKES (routes 52,52a)
Large pub served from one bar. Has 15 hand pumps with at least one cider. Wooden panelled snug area still remains with carpeted floor. Two pool tables in raised area at the back. Can show three sports channels on TV screens. Large outdoor patio area. Recently refurbished.
Reet Pizza at the Punchbowl
Large pub with 8 real ales, extensive selection of rums and a pizza oven
Crookes Social Club
A kind of twin scene venue – the main lounge is members only but the tap room is open to all visitors. There is also a concert room which hosts regular gigs and an annual beer festival. Whether drinking in the members lounge or tap room, there is a selection of reasonably priced real ales available, usually from Stancill Brewery.
31/31a: City Centre (Angel Street, near Castle Square tram stop) – Upperthorpe – Walkley – Hillsborough – Loxley: serves the Blake Hotel and Walkley Beer Company
52/52a: Woodhouse – City Centre (Church Street and West Street) – University – Broomhill – Crookes – Hillsborough – Wisewood: serves the Grindstone, Ball Inn, Crookes Social Club and the Punchbowl
95: City Centre (Interchange, Flat Street, Church Street and West Street) – Commonside – Walkley: serves the Hallamshire House, Closed Shop, Walkley Beer Company and Walkley Cottage.
Bus operators are a mixture of First, Stagecoach and Sheffield Community Transport. Travelmaster offer a range of unlimited travel tickets valid on all operators including the Citybus day ticket at £4 and the Citywide bus & tram day ticket at £4.30. Available from bus drivers and tram conductors (cash only). More information at www.travelsouthyorkshire.com.