Tuesday, December 29, 2015

Top Ten Pubs in Prestwick

Karen and I decided to celebrate my birthday by rounding up a few people and doing a bit of a pub-crawl. Now I cannot claim to be an expert about the night-life in and around Prestwick and Ayr since I am sure there are many clubs and disco type places that are frequented by younger crowds that I have yet to visit. I have, however, managed to visit my fair share of pubs in and around the area and many have left me with a lasting impression. 

First of all, it seems to me that an outing in Scotland for folks in and around my age seems to start rather early and I am forever impressed with the stamina and drinking capabilities of the great folk of
this country!  The pubs range from being rather modern and elegant to cave-like basement settings.  Vodka seems to be the drink of choice for many and the one thing that makes an evening is the ubiquitous Karaoke…I thought the Chinese loved their Karaoke but nothing beats the sing a long in a Scottish pub!  If you hail from Prestwick you can wander up and down the main street visiting the various establishments, having a bite to eat, a drink, and running into friends and family. If you want a change of scene a short and inexpensive taxi ride into Ayr provides one with even more choice of wonderful little drinking establishments.  Here is my top ten list of just a few of the places in and around Prestwick that I have had the honour of drinking in and alas staggering home from on one or more than one occasion…

  •      The Burns (Prestwick) – A great little bar with loads of atmosphere. The tiny space means you are forced to be friendly and socialize. There is a patio out back I believe but I’ve never actually visited it. Great place for Karaoke!  My number one pick!

  •      Newton Arms (Ayr) – Very friendly and roomy pub with live music and a nice little patio out the back. There is also a handy bookies right across the street. We did spend most of my birthday here and despite an unfortunate incident involving a disappearing birthday cake, it is still one of my favourite pubs! Unfortunately, it seems to have recently closed!

  •      The Golf Inn – Small little cottage-like place but nice atmosphere. A bit difficult to move about once it is full.

  •      The River Cottage (Ayr) – Very small and dark little tavern on the river. Very friendly and good Karaoke! Nice garden area if you are lucky enough to have good weather. I loved this place but that could have had something to do with the amount of drink I’d had before I arrived.

  •      Smugglers – Larger than some of the other establishments. I can’t comment on the food since I think I’ve only had crisps with my drink here while singing Karaoke!

  •      The Taj - Not actually a pub but you can get a drink here to have with some of the best Indian food I have ever experienced!  Some of the most outstanding chicken dishes I have ever had!

  •      Scruffy Duffy’s – very nice staff, live music, friendly atmosphere. Great central meeting place!

  •      The Prestwick Pioneer – More elegant than the smaller pubs and rather larger. It is very popular with the locals but not as friendly as other places.

  •      Elliots – I went here for High Tea with the kids and it was very nice but a bit on the upscale side for me. Very nice for a more fine dining experience.

  •      The Red Lion – Large but somewhat dreary tavern. I’ve included it because it is the first place in Prestwick that I ever had a drink in a licensed establishment.

Now being a Hamilton girl, I tend to feel more at home in the earthier, unpretentious, some might say uncouth surroundings. My favourite pubs are the small, homey places with friendly folk who don’t mind imbibing and have a little sing along.  These places are readily available in Ayrshire. The other reason I enjoy a little outing when visiting Prestwick is that it doesn’t seem to matter what age you are…everyone from eighteen on up to eighty can be found drinking, singing and enjoying a night out in the same establishments. This is a stark contrast, I find, to at home where clubs, bars, and pubs are relegated, albeit not officially, to crowds – the under 20’s, the over 25’s, the 30’s, the 40’s, and so on.  This is quite sad really.

Happy Birthday!

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