Glasgow. Many a visitor from the eastern side of the country has come unstuck on its pakora-strewn, sandstone tenemented streets. We don’t visit the ‘black pearl of the Clyde’ that often, I’m ashamed to say, as for the beer drinker it has a huge amount of options. The start of Glasgow Beer Week was too good to pass up, however, and coaxed us out of our Edinburgh comfort zone and along to Queen Street for some proper drinking.* It also coincided with the launch of a new bar there – Inn Deep.
*Twenty-one pounds return? You’ve got to be f*cking kidding, ScotRail!!
Rumoured to be opening around 5pm, I arrived just before six to a frantic scene of last-minute organisation – like the end of one of those home makeover shows where the family are due to pull up in a BBC people carrier at any moment. Lengths of wood were being added – or removed – chairs carried outside, things drilled into place. The bar area was quickly hoovered. I even witnessed (and have the photo to prove it) Bruce Williams himself fitting a disco glitter ball to the ceiling. Craft.
Bruce wasn’t moonlighting in between heather ale brewings, Inn Deep is owned by the Williams Brothers
empirfamily. It will be run on a day-to-day basis by Chris Williams and his sister (the Williams Juniors?), and has a healthy lineup of WB beers. Chris very kindly let me wait at the end of the bar whilst they got everything in place for the opening – so I got a great view of the final preparations – not to mention the first ever pint poured there, a WB Impale IPA.
Inn Deep looks like a club bar rather than a pub, with a curved brick ceiling (which required PVA glue to stop crumbling plaster raining down on the punters). The front room as you come down the stairs is lighter and a good place for food, while there’s a fantastic little beer garden out the back, right on the edge of the rushing River Kelvin. On a sunny afternoon, it will be absolutely packed out – the Kelvinbridge location seems perfect.
The beers on offer were great, too. Three cask and nine keg lines are roughly 50-50 Williams Brothers to guests – on the opening night the three casks were the aforementioned WB Impale, alongside two relatively new beers – Cromarty Hit the Lip and Tempest White Light. Being supplied by Williams and Craft Centric, there’ll be a fairly continuous exciting line-up, I’m sure. Certainly, any place with Kernel Imperial Brown Stout on tap gets my vote.
The word had clearly got out about Inn Deep – within half an hour of the first people arriving, it got pretty busy – and it then got absolutely rammed. The previous bar on that location was apparently there for a while – I’ve no doubt that Inn Deep should do fantastic business in that riverside location. Coupled with a beer list of that calibre, it has everything to become a firm fixture on the frenetic Glasgow beer scene.