Quiz: How well do you know York’s pubs and bars?

The bar at the Pavement Vaults. Photograph: Richard McDougall
6 Jun 2020 @ 4.02 pm
| Quiz

It’s been nigh on three months since most of us last felt the warm embrace of one of York’s myriad pubs.

No matter what delights Sainsbury’s beer aisle has to offer in lockdown, no feeling on earth compares to the timeless buzz of being handed that first cool pint of an evening.

This quiz aims to recreate a tiny slice of that joy. The following fifteen questions will whip you round the best watering holes our city has to offer.

Let’s see what you can remember from those halcyon pubgoing days. Good luck and see you on the other side.

Oh, and mine’s a Weihenstephaner, if you’re offering.

York pubs and bars quiz

1. As reported in YorkMix in 2015, this ghost was photographed behind the bar of what York pub?

Photograph: Susanne Taggart
1. Ye Olde Starre Inne
2. The Spread Eagle
3. The Old White Swan
4. The Golden Fleece

It's the Golden Fleece

Famously, the Golden Fleece is among the most haunted pubs in the country. Though the pic was taken back in 2007, the photographer was so spooked that she didn't reveal her paranormal encounter for another eight years. 

2. Which of the following is the reigning York CAMRA Pub of the Year?

1. The Maltings
2. The Slip Inn
3. The Waggon and Horses
4. The Lowther

It's the Slip Inn

Celebrating ten years as a free house this year, the Slip is a cornerstone of the Clementhorpe community, beating out increasingly tough competition to the region's most prestigious pub award for 2020. 

3. Which York pub's 10th century cellar was used as a hospital and mortuary during the English Civil War?

1. The Snickleway Inn
2. The Black Swan
3. Ye Olde Starre Inne
4. The Eagle and Child

It's Ye Olde Starre Inne

Ye Olde Starre Inne has the longest continuous license of any York establishment - it's been a pub since 1644. Their ghosts must be absolutely terrifying.

Photograph: Gazz/withinthewalls.tumblr.com on Flickr

4. In the Snickleway Inn, who is Seamas?

Photograph: YorkMix
1. The bar's resident skeleton
2. The ghost of a cat
3. A portrait of a drunk
4. A 17th century marionette

He's a ghost cat

Owned by Mrs Tulliver, Seamas is said to rub up against patrons' legs whilst they're having a bev. That's much more my sort of apparition.

5. Which of these claims to fame is true of the Blue Bell on Fossgate?

Photograph: Richard McDougall
1. York's smallest pub
2. York's only Grade II listed Edwardian pub
3. Number One for York nightlife on TripAdvisor
4. All of the above

All of them are true

Of course, the Blue Bell is most notable for its minuscule size, but both other accolades also apply. It pips the York Tap to the top spot on TripAdvisor, whilst its interior has remained untouched since 1903.

6. Which of the following pubs is NOT in the 2020 CAMRA Good Beer Guide?

1. The Volunteer Arms
2. The Golden Ball
3. House of the Trembling Madness
4. The Ackhorne

It's House of the Trembling Madness

The other three were new entries this year, alongside The Gillygate and Pivni. Trembling Madness won't be happy with that editorial decision, just a year after their million pound refurbishment. Their fine selection of all kinds of dram remains undiminished, however.

7. According to historian Hugh Murray, in 1700 in York, there was approximately one pub for every how many citizens?

1. 39
2. 89
3. 159
4. 239

There was one pub per 39 people

To be fair, there was only 10,000 people in York at the time. Still a phenomenal ratio imo.

8. The craft beer shop Hop O'Clock is notable for a machine called a crowler. What does a crowler do?

Photograph: YorkMix
1. Automatically cans beers
2. Informs you of a drink's ABV
3. Pours pints from the bottom up
4. Cools beer to its optimal temperature in 2.8 seconds

It's a canning machine

This means owner Jimmy Hoggar can source specific kegs of great beer and can them on the premises for home drinking. It's a genius concept, though his opening choice cost almost eight quid per can - enough to blow the socks off any Yorkshireman before their first sip.

9. The Rehab on Piccadilly is due to open two escape rooms in the near future. What are their themes?

Photograph: YorkMix
1. Ghosts and prehistory
2. Knights and the Shambles
3. Wizards and Guy Fawkes
4. Chocolate and the rivers

They will be wizards and Guy Fawkes-themed

The cafe-bar opened to some acclaim in September last year, but we're still awaiting the escape rooms.

10. Dusk is known for its two-for-one cocktails named after celebrities - which of these can you find on the menu?

Photograph: YorkMIx
1. Mikhail Gorbachev
2. John F. Kennedy
3. Karl Marx
4. Fidel Castro

It's Fidel Castro

You can honour the deceased Cuban revolutionary at any time of day Monday-Thursday by buying two of his cocktails for seven quid. A legacy I'm sure he would be proud of. (They're basically a mojito in all but name.)

11. Which of these is NOT a real beer produced by Brew York?

Photograph: Brew York on Facebook
1. Rhubarbra Streisand
2. Juice Forsyth
3. Keggy Mitchell
4. Goose Willis

Keggy Mitchell isn't a real brew... yet

Of course, Brew York's most renowned punning beer is Dame Judi Quench, which was lapped up by our finest export herself.

12. This view of the Minster can be seen from the top floor of which York boozer?

Photograph: Richard McDougall
1. The Habit
2. The Gillygate
3. The Market Cat
4. Roman Bath

It's the Market Cat

Opening around Christmas 2018, the Market Cat is already an established favourite amongst the city's drinkers, magnificently located in the thick of the market on Jubbergate. Authentic Milanese pizzas are available as well.

13. In the early 19th century, which of these strange-smelling establishments could be found on Skeldergate?

Photograph: mmntz on Flickr
1. The Putrid Arms
2. The Rancid Lion
3. The Filthy Filly
4. The King's Stench

It was the Putrid Arms

Though likely just a nickname, this funky sounding pub is visible on Skeldergate in an 1818 street directory. Still, let's be honest, it's no worse a name than the Cock and Bottle.

14. In Evil Eye, the Shed Seven cocktail is comprised of absinthe, pineapple, lime, grenadine and what?

Photograph: YorkMix
1. Seven slices of lime
2. Seven teaspoons of salt
3. Seven shots making the colours of the rainbow
4. Shots of seven different rums

It contains seven different rums

Potent. Though not bad value for a tenner. No intel I'm aware of on whether Rick and the lads have sampled it as yet.

15. Finally, as of early 2020, which of the following is NOT banned from the Burns Hotel bar, a Sam Smith establishment on Market Street?

1. Taking or viewing photographs
2. Inflatables
3. Swearing
4. Fun

It's fun

Of course, I ask this question affectionately. The existence of Sam Smith's pubs in the world makes it a substantially greater place, in my opinion. The perfect blend of cheap pints, pub chatter and old-fashioned British grumpiness.

All 15 questions completed!


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