Friday, August 3, 2012
Today’s Pub of the Week is the Eagle in Newmarket Road, just a 10-minute walk from the city centre, which has a beer garden to rival those in the countryside.
Newmarket Road is the main route south out of the city and I must have driven past The Eagle hundreds of times without stopping for a pint. It always looked an impressive Georgian building from the outside, and it’s nice and cosy inside as well.
But it’s real claim to fame is the huge beer garden at the back, which would grace many countryside pubs.
They recently hosted a barbecue in the garden for Aviva staff with 120 guests, and there was still plenty of space left.
The pub is popular with people living in the Golden Triangle and farther afield, and assistant manager Gareth Parry, who has been at the pub about 10 months, said they prided themselves mainly on the food and the garden.
He said: “The garden’s hidden a bit. People come in here, like it, and then look outside, and ‘crikey’. We do barbecues in the garden and christenings. We also have a good core of regulars and people who live in the area.
“We try and make it a friendly atmosphere. That’s the way you’ve got to run your business.”
The pub has been owned for about eight years by Nigel Booty, who previously worked at the Hotel Wroxham. Before joining the happy team at The Eagle, Mr Parry worked at the Willow House pub and restaurant in Watton, but he said it was a career he planned.
“I just fell into it. After I left university at Aberystwyth I got into it to find a job and get a little bit of experience, and I want to continue in it now. I love it. I like the social aspects of it, and every day is different.”
While times are tough for many pubs, he said they were doing OK.
“Hopefully the economy will get better in the future, but people are not stopping spending. We think we’ve got a nice, airy atmosphere here.
The pub really comes into its own when it’s sunny. During the winter we have the fire going, which is popular. We don’t have any TV here, which is Nigel’s thing.”
They serve three real ales, two guests and Eagle’s Nest, which is brewed through Bass.
One of the pub’s annual highlights is the Lord Mayor’s procession, which passes nearby.
The Evening News has been urging people to return to pubs in our Love your Local campaign. To see stories from the campaign visit www.eveningnews24.co.uk/loveyourlocal