Published on July 11, 2017 | by Alastair Gilmour0
Worth its weight
There are few simpler pleasures than being perched at a pub window, sipping ale, just watching the world go by. Darlington’s impressive Market Square – viewed from The Pennyweight – is a prime example of a town centre attraction with a lot going on (twice-weekly market days, for instance) or nothing, dependent on time of day or day of the week.
And that’s the beauty of a pub like this; an ever-changing scene spied through a range of beers accompanied by a food menu that appears to cover all options. The Pennyweight, refurbished a few months ago, is a community pub rich in honeyed timber, open fireplaces and exposed brickwork. The main bar area has always been a busy spot for regulars and also attracting passing trade and it has been softened at the edges by plush settees and the low lighting of a couple of “break-out” areas forming a more intimate corner.
An ever-changing line-up of cask beers could include Black Sheep Holy Grail, Sharp’s Doombar and Sonnet 43 Raven Stout with Theakstons IPA, Barista Stout and Fruli Frambois on keg. It’ll be different every time. The back bar is kitted out with an eclectic range of spirits jostling for eye contact.
An extensive menu features pub food in its traditional expressions plus modern takes on classic dishes, such as steak and stout pie, the Teesside delicacy chicken parmo, bangers and mash, and a selection of burgers complemented by “bar bait” Cajun crab cakes and a trio of Yorkshire puddings loaded with five bean chilli.
Darlington is famous for its wynds – narrow alleyways between streets – and as the afternoon sun warms the scene outside, The Pennyweight offers a fine opportunity to unwind.
“Someone once told me drinking was slow poison. I replied ‘who’s in a hurry?”