Stein Beer Keller. Excremental
My prediction at the bottom of this review ' when there's tumbleweed on the Quayside it will be boarded up or selling trebles for a quid' has been proven correct. New Year's eve 2010 and it's shut, closed, kaput. Doubtless to be replaced by some other vile shitfest. Enjoy the review anyway.
lmost laughably bad, dismal, a triumph of hype over honesty.
Let's start with the basics - it's not a beer keller, it looks nothing like a beer keller. It's straight out of the old Ultimate Leisure style guide with a couple of walls covered with mountain wallpaper. I don t know any 'beer kellers' which offer Carling [the world's only combined beer and disinfectant] on tap. As to the rest of the taps, apart from the usual fruit beers there's Budvar [not the original Budweiser, despite what you'll be told], Erdinger and three varieties of Grolsch - one assumes their prominence is entirely unconnected with their name appearing on almost every paper surface in the building [apart from the bog roll, where it might be most appropriate].
I'll set to one side that a number of those beers they advertise didn't seem to be on sale. The level of care given to the operation is such that they can't even spell the names of some of their products correctly - it's Kwak....... actually that could be a new term of abuse for the OED - a Kwak [n] dismal bar, laughably bad, as in 'Phwoarrr, what a Kwak that Stein Beer Keller is'.
The selection of beers is limited and the staff are pleasantly incompetent and equipped with smiles so vacant they make Paris Hilton and Vernon Kaye look like Socrates and Plato. Amstel served in Budvar steins, as flat as Norfolk. Possibly the worst pint I have had, without exaggeration and to put that in context I've drunk in Flynns ! This joy was underpinned by an amusing attempt to serve a weissbeer in a standard grolsch glass. It might have been a one off but in the spirit of adventure I was brave enough to venture back into this dump last night and the half-witted staff still hadn't managed to work out that the words on the beer fonts should match the words on the glasses.
The preceding is excusable in a bog standard bar which serves cooking lager mixed with a few posh 'uns. In a bar with pretensions to sell real beers, one assumes to people who know about real beers it's a disgrace. For God's sake guys, even Weatherspoons does better than this !
During the winter, unorthodox [and I suspect highly illegal] heating arrangements have been installed for your amusement - a huge propane cylinder powering a flaming jet space heater, blocking the door to the disabled toilet - that said the only disabled person to pop into this risible bar more than once would be brain damaged.
A bright spark has installed bizarre smoke generator under an umbrella parked on the performance stage [no I wasn't pissed, I did see that, though I can't vouch for the sanity of the person who thought it was a good idea]. Perhaps it was a homage to the winter heater.
One other thing has changed since my last visit. If you were wondering where the former Grey's Club clientèle has migrated to [other than a pine box or the crematorium as a result of their advancing years] I can help. I have never seen so many fat, old and ugly women. One group of aspiring Jesmond-ites; mutton dressed as pig, fake tan slapped onto skin like a crocodile was followed by a second group of tatooed hags straight from the pages of Viz comic. Finally a fancy dress hen party which looked like a convention on eating disorders waddled through the [fortunately double width] doors. A group of down-market, sweating hippos mixing with starvation chic all dressed in tat nylon fancy dress and pretending to be something they're not. What a perfect metaphor for this twatfest of a bar.
If you want a beer keller with a range of decent beers then hit the usual suspects: the Head, Tilleys or the Forth. If you want cheap on the Quayside go to Lloyds - almost opposite this pratfest, but with competent service and without the risk of setting your arse ablaze if you let one rip near the heater. In this place it's a huge challenge to keep your farts in when every instinct leaves you wanting to drop your pants and leave a curly shit on the bar.
It's just so pitifully mediocre. If it had opened without all of the fanfare, without all of the overstated we're a Beer Keller, without all of the myspace and facebook toss. If they had said 'look, we're a quayside bar, we re cheap and we sell a few decent beers' then I d shrug my shoulders and say 'so what'. There are lots of crap bars on the quayside - with Flynns almost certainly being the worst, however deep down most amateur dives seem to know they re rotten and they don't brag. This is the bar equivalent of 'knock off Nigel' dressed head to toe in counterfeit Henri Lloyd - not even having the taste to pick a decent brand to copy.
Mark my words, when there's tumbleweed on the Quayside it will be boarded up or selling trebles for a quid. They've already started with buy one, get one free cards offering 'free entry' - free fucking entry, free fucking entry ?!?!?!. People have paid to get into this place ?? I'd pay to escape.
How bad was this bar....... I went to Chase afterwards and it seemed fabulous. 'Nuff said.