Pub 15. The Terrace Inn, Fenton. 7/3/18
In attendance – DJT, Po, Swin, Bram
Here’s a not so interesting fact for you. There are three pubs in Stoke on Trent called “The Terrace”. This review, however is only for the one in the Fenton area of the city, the other two will just have to wait their turn. The good thing about all of these pubs is that they are actually in walking distance of my house, happy days! The Terrace Inn sits on the main road that goes from Stoke to Fenton, and is situated in a corner location so although there is no parking, the road at the side provides somewhere to leave your vehicle if you need to drive there. My initial thoughts as approaching the pub was that it wasn’t open, it did look a bit dark inside. However, I could see a number of people sat down so was confident that we’d not go through the irritation of selecting a substitute drinking establishment. Fortunately, our luck was in again this week.
As you walk through the door, you are greeted by a tiled floor, darts area to the left and the main pub is to your right and features a wooden bar, wooden tables, bench and stool type seating. The décor does seem a bit dated, with the red walls hinting that this is another Stoke City pub so probably gets a bit busy on a match day. However, the pub is generally clean and fit for purpose. After spending a short time in the pub, you do realise that it’s the kind of place that everyone knows each other, the landlord/landlady know all the local’s names and what they drink. It’s basically a proper local pub. Another thing you notice, is that there is a really friendly vibe to the place, and the fact that four randomers had entered the pub on a Wednesday didn’t cause any issues with the locals. We were sat in the bar all night, although there is a lounge on the other side of the pub, which has carpet and a slightly plusher set of furniture. The bar has a large flat screen TV which had the football on, whilst the local station “Signal Radio” was also being played into the pub. Listening to football commentary and adverts for tile retailers simultaneously was a bit confusing at times.
Beer choice is adequate, with Fosters, Stella and Carling as the available lagers. If you want a real ale you can choose from Bass Mild, Worthingtons or Sharps Sea Fury. There isn’t Fruli, I’m not actually sure how it would go down with the locals, but Carling Cider is there if you want something fruit based. I settled for a few pints of the Sea Fury, which retailed at £3.10 a pint and was a pretty decent pint. You can vape inside, and although it isn’t a food pub, a tray of ham, crackers and potatoes was brought out onto the bar for everyone’s enjoyment which seemed to please the locals.
There is a small covered smoking area which has a heater, which was not working on our visit. Onto the subject of the pork scratchings, after last week’s lack of swine I was hoping we were not going to be let down again. Fortunately, if like me you are a big fan of pork scratchings you won’t be disappointed. Not only are there various flavours of “Mr Tubs” pork crackling available (Smokey BBQ & Hot Chilli) which retail at £1, you can get a packet of the standard “MS Traditional Pork Scratchings”. For the choice alone, it scores five out of five. The gent’s toilets have 80’s style tiles with nice grey tiles on the floor, a long trough style urinal, 1 cubicle and 1 sink. Overall, they are fairly pleasant and smell fresh. The “Sector” hand dryer was a bit feeble but there was additional hand drying facilities courtesy of a towel sat on the radiator. Since there were no females with us, I cannot verify the standard of the ladies toilet facilities.
The main thing to say about The Terrace is that on a sign outside, it states that there is a friendly welcome. Sometimes, I take this with a pinch of salt. However, with this pub it’s all true. So far, we haven’t really had a great deal of interaction with locals but in the terrace, there were a collection of locals who we had a good laugh with. Initially, we were asked to move seats because they normally play a game of Nap on a Wednesday. It’s their pub, so no problems here and we went towards the end of the bar and played some skittles. From this point onwards, there was a lot of friendly banter which the landlord was involved in. When we left the pub, we were told we were welcome any time! In fact, the quote of the night was “You know what you want, Malcolm, for your next bird? One of those cage fighters”. Just so amazing.
To conclude the review, although ideally a couple of more real ales wouldn’t go amiss, the atmosphere and interaction with the locals make up for this. There’s a cracking selection of pork scratchings. Overall, a cracking little pub which I’d love to visit more often.
Beer choice/range – 2.5/5
Ambience – 5/5
Facilities – 3.5/5
Location – 2.5/5
Locals/Safeness – 5/5
Pork scratchings – 5/5
Fruli – 0/1
Toilets – 4/5
Other – 3/5
Overall – 30.5/41
Random Attendee Comments –
“Yes yes Terrace: good local feel, quote busy for a week night…felt welcome etc” – Bram
“”That’s why people want to fire bomb your house” shouted one local women arguing with another outside a neighbouring house. I do like a pub with an edge, even if the edge is technically just nearby and nothing to do with the pub. Sets the mood nicely for a skittles game of questionable quality in front of an intoxicated septuagenarian audience” – Po
“The Terrace used to be my watering hole before going to the match at the Victoria Ground. It was brilliant to go back and not much had changed. It’s a great little boozer and very friendly and sure is a “locals pub”. Awesome selection of swine and the table skittles was a mint end to the night. Simply lovely!!” – Swin