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The Brampton Halt

It's good for a beer festival AND for a meal, read our review of the pub set in Northamptonshire's gorgeous countryside

Who doesn’t love a good beer festival? I for one, made sure I visited THE Beer Festival in Munich (the legendary Oktoberfest) three times – my liver has never forgiven me! But back here in Blighty there’s nothing that signals the start of the summer season (or slightly chilly spring), than the commencement  of the beer festivals. And in early with open doors last night, is the Brampton Halt Beer Festival, kicking off with over 25 different real ales, craft beers and lagers, all of which are made in Britain. I hopped along just before it opened last night and managed to try a fair few, hiccup.

I stumbled upon this lovely place several years ago, its near Chapel Brampton and is one of the few pubs I’ve found with LOTS of outdoor space and good grub. Set in the beautiful Northamptonshire countryside it has fab views over the lake and always has a good mix of people taking in the scenery and the the hospitality.

The weather wasn’t glorious, but it was mild enough to sit outside, and there’s no rain forecast until Monday, so you’d be crackers not to give it a try and take in the views (and colourful array of scooters).

A summer pic to give you a good idea of how it looks with blue skies (hurry up summer)

Lots of people know this pub because it’s located on the Brampton Way historic railway line, and good use is made of the former old stationmasters house which is the perfect setting for BBQs, fireworks and family events like this, and the marquee also offers the ideal venue for private functions.

Kid AND dog friendly, the calm before the beer storm

We arrived before the crowds for a mooch around, and the kids (and dog), were pretty impressed. There were already a few beer festival goers milling around outside testing the goods (and the British weather), and the tasty outdoor BBQ and music kick off tonight so expect quite a few more!

With two hungry kids and a Mr Muddy who never turns down a good meal, we gave the regular food a go, and have to say, it was definitely above-par pub food (especially considering there was a beer festival launching that night). There’s an extensive menu, but also some great specials to tempt the taste buds. Aside from me, the Muddy palate is pretty meaty, so Mr M tried out the lamb, while the Mudlets went for the pork belly and crackling (a standard choice from at least one of them), and the gorgonzola stuffed chicken with pancetta.

It’s very rare that we’re all in agreement, but it was top marks all round (and not one chip in sight). I had the cod, with green lipped mussels and homemade prawn and salmon croquettes. At £12.95, I thought it was VERY reasonable for restaurant quality food, although there are more pricier things on the menu at £20 plus. It was bustling inside with people of all ages, and even though it’s a very foodie pub, dogs are allowed in the bar, which is a big thumbs up from me (although to be honest, Muddy Paws was stinking from a dip in the pond, so she had a little dry off in the car while we stuffed our bellies)!

All in all we had a lovely evening, and I’m tempted to go back and try out the BBQ and the bands at the weekend. There’s a great line up of LIVE music from tonight (more details here) and I really ought to work my way through that fab beer-fest drinks menu. Cheers!

Bands in brief…

Friday 21 April, Kickstart – 8pm, Saturday 22 April, Donnybrook Fair – 6pm – 9pm, Whiteroom – 9pm – 11pm, Sunday 23 April, Ashby Clarke – 3pm.

The Brampton Halt, Pitsford Road, Chapel Brampton, Northampton, NN6 8BA. Tel: 01604 842676 Email: [email protected]

 

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The Urban Guide to the Countryside - Northamptonshire