The Rhubarb Tavern in Barton Hill, Bristol, would be our local if it was open, and we’d love to see someone take it on.
We visited a couple of years back and if you Google the Rhubarb, we’re usually near or at the top of the search results, alongside Burston Cook who are trying to sell the leasehold.
Though we thought we had written something pretty positive, and other people tell us they liked the piece, it occurs to us now that it might make the pub and location sound a little less appealing than is necessarily fair.
With our lofty Google position in mind, we’re writing this post to see if we can encourage potential buyers to give it some thought.
It was originally a farmhouse and some of that structure remains, with a later frontage. There are also some fixtures from a demolished 17th century manor house that once stood nearby.
There’s no doubt it’s in a pretty bad state and will need a lot of work – but it’s also got a lot of potential. For a start, there are currently no other pubs in Barton Hill. That’s a lot of households that aren’t currently being served. Including ours.
A short walk into St Philips, though, and there are taprooms galore and the Cider Box has also recently opened 100 metres down the road. So the Rhubarb could fit quite well into a weekend crawl as well as being the only place to drink on a wet Wednesday night.
The area immediately to the west has been designated a conservation area, in view of the large amount of surviving Victorian industrial architecture. This means that there is a stated intent to keep development of this area in harmony with what’s already there; in practice this could mean more taprooms and breweries. The Rhubarb could find itself on the end of Bristol’s Beer Boomerang™.
The property itself has a lot going for it.
It’s big enough, and has enough distinct sections, to support, say, showing the football in one part while leaving another free for quiet drinking.
There is a beer garden.
There appear to be quite substantial living quarters above.
And that exterior – what a beauty!
It’s the kind of pub you can imagine people saying in a few year’s time: “Can you believe this used to be a bit of a wreck and that nobody used to come here?” Think of the Marble Arch in Manchester by way of comparison.
We’re certainly not the only people with an interest in seeing it do well. There is also a campaign underway set up to save the pub by getting it listed and local CAMRA are all over it.