The Geldart, Ainsworth Street, Cambridge has rarely (if ever) featured in ALE.
A Tolly pub, then Pubmaster, now Punch, it never sold much by way of real
ale with a single handpump for Greene King IPA the most you could expect in
recent times. But now it's been "all shook up" by new licensee Elvis
Many will know Elvis from his 4-1/2 year stint as cellarman/bar manager of the
nearby Kingston Arms, one of our premier real ale pubs. He took on the
Geldart earlier in the year but it needed a lot of work before reopening on 9
August. Whereas only one room had been in use before, you now have a
choice of three. Most ALE drinkers will head for the Real Ale Bar to the left of
the entrance. This is simply but smartly furnished with bare floor boards (as in
the other rooms), restored bar counter and characterful bar back and a newly-
installed fireplace. Elvis has opened up previously boarded windows so that
light now floods in. The bar top is adorned by six handpumps though until
trade builds Elvis is using only four of them. Caledonian Deuchars IPA is
permanent and the other three change around (Youngs Special, St Austell
Dartmoor and Black Sheep Bitter when we called). Although he's currently
confined to the (not bad) Punch beer list, Elvis is hoping to negotiate a free-of-
tie pump to enable him to sell local ales. He's also intending to sell a range of
bottled real ales and has already built up a fine collection of malt whiskeys.
The main bar, as you walk in, is T-shaped and has bench seating along two
walls; patio doors lead to a sizeable outdoor drinking area. This will be where
most of the eating goes on though food had only just got started at the time of
our visit. The speciality is the Black Rock Grill featuring steaks and so forth
cooked on hot rocks but there are also veggie options, snacks, soups and
The third room, formerly a store, is behind the bar and has a really cosy feel -
deep leather armchairs, a single large table and tasteful blue walls (and
internet access too).
As befits his name, Elvis intends to introduce live music shortly. In the
meantime the white-painted piano in the main bar is playable while the real
ale bar sports a "real" record-player.
Currently, the Geldart is closed Mondays, open Tuesday - Thursday evenings
from 5, Friday 12-3 and 5-11 and all day Saturday and Sunday. Opening
times will increase alongside trade.
What was already the best drinking area in the city just got that bit better.