Pub of the Year award for Stalybridge Station’s world famous Buffet Bar

STALYBRIDGE’S famous Buffet Bar is celebrating once again after picking up another prestigious award.

But it has given manager Caroline Barnes a problem – where to put it as they have scooped so many!

The bar on the platform of Stalybridge’s railway station can add the Campaign for Real Ale (CAMRA) Pub of the Year for the High Peak, Tameside and North-East Cheshire branch for 2019 to its long list of honours.

And manager Caroline Barnes is delighted to have won it for the first time in four years as it means the Buffet Bar is doing what the business has been built on well.

Even though it may mean a bit of shuffling around when the certificate arrives in August.

“It’s great to win it from CAMRA as we have some cracking beers on,” she said. “It also shows we run the pub right.

“But when they award does come, I may have to move things around a bit on the bar so it can fit in alongside the others!

“I just think what makes the Buffet Bar is the fact it’s unique. It’s a bit of a landmark as well and people actually want to come out to it.

“People make plans to come and visit.”

This latest award gives further recognition to the fact that Stalybridge Buffet Bar is a success, both in the pumps and over the bar.

One glimpse on a Saturday afternoon pays testament to how it has progressed and last year it was named as one of the top 10 best railway refreshment establishments in the world.

But even though it has been licensed since 1888, there are no signs of it resting on its laurels.

Caroline revealed there are more plans to take it forward in 2019, as well as the regular ‘Meet the Brewer’ nights it holds that allow people to find out the story behind what they may be drinking.

“We’ll always be a home for summer and winter beer festivals but we’ve always got new ideas on the food side of things.

“There’s also many more breweries and micro-breweries starting up and we’re more than happy to give them a platform.

“The majority of them are excellent too.”

Caroline tries to keep a focus on brewers from the area, with Mossley’s Millstone a popular choice, as well as Derbyshire’s Torside and Thornbridge from Bakewell in the county.

Howard Town from Caroline’s home town of Glossop also gets a run as she admits to reading up on beers put forward before her and others carry out the main test – how an ale tastes.

“We’ll carry on supporting local brewers and people we’ve always supported,” she said. “But we’ll always give up-and-comers a platform to showcase their beers too.

“And being manager here is definitely not a 9-5 job, there’s always something to do.

“My phone never stops. Even when I’m on my way home it’s always pinging!”

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