Nestled amongst the trees and below the hills of the Lickeys, the Old Hare & Hounds looks like a great, old fashioned place to get a drink on the outside. The building's lovely architecture really stands out, and entices customers to enter the doors.
Inside is just as nice too, and the customers are vibrant and in thier masses. It's one of two pubs in Rednal, so you can see why the place is so popular. Drinks are quite cheap and standard to most pubs that you'd find in the city centre, while choices are much wider, and I managed to get a glass of Stone's Green Ginger Wine, although, I don't think most customers ask for this, because the staff were very confused as to how much it cost, and how much to pour in a glass!
There's a great outdoor area full of umbrella shades for a hot summers day, and heat lamps if it gets a little too cold (and I was cold, even though it's June!)
The Old Hare and Hounds attracts the young. This Rednal public house prospers with a mixture of crowds, predominantly young.
On a Saturday night it packs out and has various competitors punters come here after. The Only Way is Essex is emulated in Birmingham with this pub.
I enjoyed it and it was far more vibrant than some of the other pubs that oppose to this. It continues to prosper with the cheap flowing drinks and many people who gather here. Key things to remember when going in here, prepare to queue, don't take a coat with a hood however cold it is due to the strict door policy and leave your dancing shoes at home (there's no room for dancing unfortunately).
The Old Hare & Hounds is not a pub I like very much, although at one time it used to be lively and fun. Nowadays it's filled with snobby types and cliques who look at you as if you don't belong if you don't happen to spend your life in there.
The pub itself looks fantastic, it's beautifully decorated with comfortable and very attractive furnishings. There is an ornate smoking 'shed' (for want of a better word) outside which is comfortably heated and well lit.
The drinks are overpriced in here, as is the food. I get the impression they are trying to steer custom from the bigger pub restaurant opposite, what used to be called The Poachers Pocket but has recently changed its name although I can't remember it.
The thing is the atmosphere in the old Poachers Pocket is great; at any one time there are children, families, groups of business men and couples eating and drinking in there which means there is always a friendly and fun mix of people. This is why I think the Old Hare & Hounds will never win this particular battle.
Children are not allowed in this pub, and they stick rigidly to this rule. Just last week we popped in with our 17 month old daughter, who was asleep in her pram, and the guy behind the bar waited until we'd ordered and paid for our drinks before telling us we would have to go outside with the baby. Honestly, I was so annoyed - it was blowing a gale and pouring with rain which was one of the main reasons we had popped in.
I know these pubs have to be careful because of their licences but to be made to stand outside with a young baby because of their rules seemed a little harsh to me, and I told him so in no uncertain terms!
There are meals in the Old Hare & Hounds and these are generally good, if a little expensive. I had a Christmas meal here last year and that was absolutely delicious, but my mum regularly comes here to eat from their standard menu and she tells me the food can be very hit and miss sometimes. I do love the steak from here which is usually cooked perfectly and although I am not a fan of their chips, I will swap those for a jacket potato which is invariably delicious. The only problem is they put the butter on my potato and I'd prefer to do this myself as I only like a very little amount.
My fella says the selection of real ales in here is very good and they also provide some guest beers now and again which are a nice change from lager. I am always impressed with their wine list and there is always something to choose from to match my food perfectly. The wine is surprisingly well priced compared to everything else in here with a refreshing bottle of white starting at just £6.99.
I love going up to the Hare and Hounds, it's always busy and in the summer evenings they've got a nice garden area to sit in, they do do food but as of yet i've never tried it although from what i've seen it looks very nice. There's always a nice atmosphere in there, it's got quite an old fasioned feel to it but it's quite trendy at the same time, and they do a decent pint!!!!!
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