Champions League – Round of 16

The Champions League is back with the Round of 16 kicking off on the 13th February as five English teams progress to the knockout stages of the tournament. The first night sees Tottenham head to Juventus, while Man Utd take-on Basel. Winners of this round will progress into the quarter-finals, to be held in April.

Click here to find pubs and bars near you where you can watch.

Champions League – Round of 16 (1st leg/2nd leg)

Real Madrid v Paris – 14 February & 6 March

Chelsea v Barcelona – 20 February & 14 March

Juventus v Tottenham – 13 February & 7 March

Bayern v Beşiktaş – 20 February & 14 March

Basel v Manchester City – 13 February & 7 March

Porto v Liverpool – 14 February & 6 March

Sevilla v Manchester United – 21 February & 13 March

Shakhtar Donetsk v Roma – 21 February & 13 March

*All kick-offs 19:45GMT except Beşiktaş v Bayern at 17:00GMT on 14 March

The road to Kyiv – dates for your diary

16 March: Quarter-final draw
3/4 April: Quarter-finals, first leg
10/11 April: Quarter-finals, second leg
13 April: Semi-final and final draw
24/25 April: Semi-finals, first leg
1/2 May: Semi-finals, second leg
26 May: Final (NSK Olimpiyski, Kyiv)

Six Nations 2018 Fixtures

It’s that time of year again! The NatWest Six Nations Championship is back and England are looking to defend their two year title run. Unfortunately not all of us can jet off to Paris or Rome, but i think we can all agree that the next best place to watch is the pub! To find pubs and bars near you where you can catch all the action click here.

ROUND ONE

Wales vs Scotland: February 3, 2.15pm, Cardiff, BBC

France vs Ireland: February 3, 4.45pm, Paris, BBC

Italy vs England: February 4, 3pm, Rome, ITV.

ROUND TWO

Ireland vs Italy: February 10, 2.15pm, Dublin, ITV

England vs Wales: February 10, 4:45pm, London, ITV

Scotland vs France: February 11, 3pm, Edinburgh, BBC

ROUND THREE

Frances vs Italy: February 23, 8pm, Marseille, ITV

Ireland vs Wales: February 24, 2.15pm, Dublin, BBC

Scotland vs England: February 24, 4.45pm, Edinburgh, BBC

ROUND FOUR 

Ireland vs Scotland: March 10, 2.15pm, Dublin, ITV

France vs England: March 10, 4:45pm, Paris, BBC

Wales vs Italy: March 11, 3pm, Cardiff, BBC

ROUND FIVE

Italy vs Scotland: March 17, 12:30pm, Rome, ITV

England vs Ireland: March 17, 2:45pm, London, ITV

Wales vs France: March 17, 5pm, Cardiff, BBC

Find pubs near Murrayfield Stadium

Find pubs near Twickenham Stadium 

Find pubs near the Principality Stadium

Love at First Pint?

Did you know, studies have shown more than half of us have dated someone we met down the pub, and more than 30% of those relationships ended in marriage! So with all this love flying around, Brakspear want to hear the best stories that highlight how pubs still play such a significant role in bringing people together, not just socially, but romantically.

Emma Sweet, Brakspear marketing manager, said, “People might be finding dates online through websites and apps these days, but in our experience, plenty of lasting relationships still start in the pub.

“We’ve seen love blossom in many of our pubs, on both sides of the bar, and across it.  Several of our tenant couples met while working or drinking together and we’ve heard of lots of customers who first set eyes on their significant other in the pub.

“We thought it would be fun to celebrate pub romances around Valentine’s Day. And as the prizes are to be enjoyed in the pub where they first met, it’s a way for partners to take a trip down memory lane to the start of their relationship.”

Heart-shaped beer mats are being placed in Brakspear pubs to direct customers to the Facebook and Twitter sites where they can share their stories. Lucky couples can win a Pinkster G&T for two, a bottle of Laurent Perrier Rosé, or a generous hamper containing one of the drinks plus some other goodies, to be collected from the pub.

So, if you think your pub love story is a worthy contender, simply post it on https://www.facebook.com/brakspearpubs/ on Twitter or Instagram using the hashtag #brakspearpublove, or by email to love@brakspear.co.uk. Winners will be notified before 14 February.

To find your nearest Brakspear pub click here.

Estrella Damm Top 50 Gastropubs 2018

Foodie pubs across the UK have been assessed by industry experts to compile this year’s list of the top 50 must-visit gastropub destinations. The collection of venues, spread over six regions, boast Michelin Stars, award-winning chefs, and 5 star front-of-house teams between them.

The winning pub is The Sportsman, Kent, once described by owner Stephen Harris as his “grotty boozer by the sea”. Although considering this is the third time it has taken the title, there’s a chance he’s being modest.

Congratulations to all the winners!

The Top 10:

  1. The Sportsman, Kent
  2. The Pony & Trap, Bristol
  3. The Star Inn, York
  4. Freemasons at Wiswell, Lancashire
  5. The Coach, Buckinghamshire
  6. The Drapers Arms, London
  7. The Beehive, Berkshire
  8. Parkers Arms, Lancashire
  9. The Hardwick, Abergavenny
  10. The Marksman, London

Click here to see all 50 winners.

About the awards:

The “Estrella Damm” Top 50 Gastropub Awards are voted for by top foodies and hospitality experts. These include gastropub operators (who can’t vote for their own pubs), food writers, pubco catering development managers and executive chefs, celebrity and top hospitality industry chefs, pub guide editors, industry chiefs and food operators. The voting criteria ensures the list really is decided by the industry.

To ensure that each region in the UK has an equal opportunity for their pubs to shine, our voters are broken down into six geographical regions, with an equal number of votes collected in each by the Top 50 Gastropubs Voting Academy. Our regional academy chairs include food writers and experts.

The Morning Advertiser editor Ed Bedington says: “Winning or being shortlisted as a finalist is an excellent way of getting your pub – and yourself – the recognition that you deserve.”

Food and drink editor Nicholas Robinson adds: “Getting on this list is the jewel in the crown for foodie pubs across the UK. It’s the place to be seen.”

Votes are cast in a poll of hundreds of industry experts, including top chefs, food writers, pubco chiefs, pub-guide editors and top suppliers to bring you this definitive list of the best gastropubs in Britain.

Burns Night Bevvies

Burns Night offers a chance to celebrate the life and works of legendary Scottish poet and lyricist, Robert Burns. With pubs across the nation, from John O’Groats to Land’s End, hosting tributes. Of course, they couldn’t possibly do that without raising a traditional whisky toast to the man, after all, Burns himself was partial to a wee dram.

But if you fancy trying something a bit sweeter to top off your Burns Supper, one of these simple cocktails, as recommended by the Scotch Whisky Association, should do the trick! We’re sure Rabbie would approve of a little modern twist on the ‘guid, auld Scotch drink’.

Whisky Sours

To a double Scotch add the juice of half a lemon and half a teaspoonful of sugar. Shake with ice and serve with a squirt of soda water.

Whisky Royale

25ml measure of Scotch Whisky, dash of apple schnapps (or clear apple juice), ginger ale, sliced green apple, crushed ice.

Half fill a chilled champagne flute with crushed ice. Pour in the Scotch Whisky and then the apple schnapps. Top up with ginger ale. Place a slice of green apple into the drink.

Scotch Paradise

Sugar syrup, desiccated coconut, 50ml measure of Scotch Whisky, a dash of coconut syrup, milk. Moisten the edge of a highball glass with sugar syrup and roll the glass in desiccated coconut to coat the outer edge.

Fill a cocktail shaker with ice and add the Scotch Whisky, the coconut syrup and top with milk (enough to fill the glass). Shake well and pour into the glass.

Bitter ‘n’ Twisted

In a chilled cocktail glass mix a few drops of lemon juice, 4 drops of Angostura bitters, 25ml measure of Scotch Whisky, ginger ale to top up.

Jock Collins

Scotch Whisky, 5-6 dashes lemon juice, sugar syrup, soda. Pour into a large glass and fill with soda.

Red Scotch

Shake together 25ml measure of Scotch Whisky, tomato juice, juice of half a lemon, dash of Worcestershire sauce, dash of Tabasco sauce. Fill a glass with ice and pour the mixture over and decorate with freshly ground black pepper.

Slainte!

Looking for somewhere to enjoy the Burns Night merriment? Check out events happening in pubs and bars near you.