I’m making my way though Euston train station, on a cider crawl. This may be the first ever cider crawl, in fact, I’ll trade mark the term. I’m on a Cider Crawl® . I’m making my way through Euston Station, with a quick stop for my ciderkick to get some plasters – his new shoes are killing him. Always wear sensible shoes when out on an all-day lashing. You could even buy this sensible pair, called Marc.
The Euston Cider Tap is part of a pair of little pubs, housed within the old ticket offices of the first Euston station. I won’t describe it too much, as you can read more about it on this previous post. Go on, it’s quite good.
We arrive at the Tap at twilight, though that is of no significance to this post. We choose from the wide range of ciders chalked up on the blackboard. There’s more scrump in here than you can shake a Tom Putt at. I decide on the London Cider “Bushpig”, my ciderkick chooses the Twisted Cider “Misty“.
We translocate to one of the tall benches within the bar. the Bushpig, like its cuddly name, is fragrant, like apricots in summer picnic. I see the my ciderkick’s face turning at the taste of the misty. We make a swap and he’s much more content with the Bushpig. Unlike the summery cider, Misty feels more like a spicy winter drink. Like a weird winter candle scent, it’s dry, herby, coriander, tomato vine, mildew, burned stuff… I can’t quite put my.. I know! It’s like when, on bonfire night, your mam can’t afford a pumpkin, so you have to make a hallowe’en lantern with a swede. Then it’s too small for the candle, so the top gets burnt. Misty tastes like that smell.
Misty is heavier on the nose than the Bushpig, which, despite its name, does not smell much at all. By heavier, I mean minging. There’s a lot going on in that mist. It’s made with all local (Dorset) apples, and the Twisted strapline is “Don’t get Wasted, get Twisted’. ‘Don’t get Pisseded’, would also rhyme.
It’s Good Friday, and it’s a bit quiet round these parts, but is surprisingly full in this cosy little bar. I observe the barman telling a punter what ciders are on offer. I hear an American accent in reply, ‘That doesn’t mean anything to me’. He asks for something apply, something sweet. Halves please. Another customer arrives, just down from Royston Vasey. He asks for anything weak. The barman points at me.
I think people are missing the point of The Cider Tap. Hanging around a bus station, drinking weak, sweet cider is what 14 year-olds do. If you come to the Tap, you really have to get into the spirit of things and try a proper pint. So, rather than watch a load of middle aged men looking like they’ve just tried an oyster for the first time, we drink up and knob off through the dim, drizzly Fitzrovian streets, heading towards our next Cider Crawl® target: Oxford Street and The Green Man.
A dedicated cider bar, in a disused ticket office outside Euston bus station? You couldn’t make this stuff up!