BEER + GAOL
Off to the Crum
Northern Ireland's only remaining Victorian prison was the first of today's two destinations to celebrate our dad's birthday. Prisons and birthdays don't exactly go hand-in-hand, but when someone who has everything needs a present, experiences are the way forward.
The tour lasted just over an hour, a mix of funny and interesting stories form our guide and plenty of free time to explore the cells and creepy rooms around the prison.
Dad's the one on the left ;)
The place has been immaculately restored; not sure if it was this clean when it was still in use. Doors finally closed in 1996, lying vacant until 2010 when work began to transform it into the great tourist destination that it is now.
Onwards to a more traditional birthday experience at Brewbot on Belfast's Ormeau Road. Offering up a coffe shop chilled vibe, craft beer is still the main order ofthe day. Well, for us on this day anyway.
The speciality here is a tasting tray of 8x quarter-pint beers, costing £12. A sign behind the bar details your options. From here, the convo turns to numbers. From ditching any attempt to call out the names of the unfamiliar brewing companies when ordering, to sitting down and figuring out what you're currently tasting.
TIP: take a photo of the sign behind the bar so you can refer to it as you taste AND keep an eye on the ABV %. Despite being quarter pint beers, in no time you're feeling giddy and laughing out loud (LOL) at your drinking partners' facial expressions. Some of the brews were over 10% ABV and despite quickly knowing which ones you loved and loathed, ALL vanished eventually. Averaging out at approx £6 a pint, this is still well worth the money for the overall experience.
The perfect pre-dinner appetiser - especially for 3 old men that love their beer.