Lifestyle & Culture
I know a great little place in Sheffield...
Words - Ben Cater
The Fat Cat Photograph by Ben Cater
The Fat Cat
n difficult economic times where consumers are being thrifty with their cash and cautiously tightening their belts, the appreciation of real ale has experienced a somewhat surprising resurgence. Chesterfield is a prime example of where pubs have been rejuvenated under a Brampton Brewery format, serving an array of pints including Golden Bud and Brampton Best - both of which are locally brewed. This principle is also evident in Sheffield, where Thornbridge Brewery have recently opened their new in bar Dada (formerly Trippets). Sheffield is also home to The Fat Cat, the first real ale house to come to the city. This old-fashioned public house, situated by Kelham Island, has a traditional, warm and friendly vibe that people - whether visitors or seasoned regulars - simply respond to. Given that the local area surrounding this quaint old pub isn’t particularly aesthetically pleasing, early reservations are understandable and you’d be forgiven for walking past this place. However, if you choose to look past the pub’s surroundings and venture inside, you’ll soon put any doubts to rest. The busy walls in the two fire-lit snugs are covered from top to bottom in posters, old mirrors, pictures and awards, towards the back of the building lies a beer garden with plenty of seating and outside heating - perfect for all year round. Combine the cosy atmosphere with impressive food and drink options and it’s easy to understand why The Fat Cat is a regular in the AA Good Pub guide. The pub serves good wholesome food including options such as steak pie, Ploughman’s lunch, cheese and onion, broccoli and cheddar pasta to name a few all at very reasonable prices for students on a budget. The steak pie is a fantastic option if you’re looking for a hearty meal. If it’s a snack you want then the miniature pork
pies go down a treat with a pint of Pale Rider - Champion Beer of Britain 2004 and one of ales produced by Kelham Island Brewery, which is just next door. At £2.40 a pint on cask, Pale Rider and the other ales on offer here represent good value for money and great tastes. The Fat Cat offers something different to students - it’s a far cry from pyjama
parties, silent discos and celebrity appearances. Instead, Monday nights are curry and quiz nights, with offers on selected beer. It’s somewhere to chat, laugh, relax on the rare occasion you might not feel like a ‘big’ night. There’s something special about The Fat Cat - it’s well worth a look.