Tuesday, 23 February 2010
10 Quay Street, Cardiff [map]
We like The City Arms. With its relative proximity to the lower end of St Mary Street, it's like a beery oasis in a desert of shite.
It's the sort of traditional city centre boozer that's perfect for a spot of drinking and thinking: you can be pretty sure your pint's not going to be soundtracked by screaming brats in three-wheeled buggies or Lady Gaga records played at tinnitus-inducing volume.
After we were safely ensconced within the confines of the bar, I complimented The Photographer on the artfully jaunty angle of the exterior shot he had just taken. "For 'jaunty angle'," he replied gravely, "read drunk."
The City Arms is a bit like a TARDIS in reverse: it's a lot bigger on the outside than it is on the inside.
They've managed to cram plenty of grog behind the bar though, from Brains to blue WKD, via a shelf-full of the sort of dusty and archaic-looking bottles of spirits that you'd expect to find in your parents' drinks cabinet.
The view from our seats round the other side of the bar.
There are a couple more tables down the far end, here housing some students and, on the right, a bloke in the midst of an existential breakdown.
Still, if you are going to have a sudden and profound personal crisis vis-à-vis the pointlessness of life, you might as well do it in a pub.