The Moderation: a Spirit House Pub

When Mr Fueled by Beer thinks back all misty eyed to the Reading pub scene of his youth most of his town centre haunts are long gone. Names that come to mind: Tudor Tavern, Ye Olde Boar’s Head (aka Whore’s Bed), the Coopers and the Mitre just to name a few. One pub from that time remains however and Mr & Mrs Fueled by Beer had the good fortune to rediscover it during a rainy Saturday afternoon in March…

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click to view

The Moderation – “Mod” to locals – is where Mr Fueled by Beer escaped overpriced watered down beer sold inside the arena at Reading Rock Festival’s inaugural years circa 1972. The Mod still sits sentinel-like at the Reading end of Caversham Bridge on Caversham Road.

Back in those days I knew the Mod as a dingy town boozer that poured the ubiquitous cheap draft lagers and bitters of the day and its idea of haute cuisine would be a bag of Golden Wonder crisps of undetermined age excised from a dilapidated cardboard box behind the bar. And we loved it.

Today the Mod offers an altogether different – and much nicer – experience. And it is somewhat unusual as pubs go. One of a trio of Spirit House pubs, the Mod has been beautifully renovated with a southeast Asian theme and its combination of Thai-inspired food dishes fused with beloved British pub standards sets it apart from most other pubs in the area.

click to view

click to view

During our visit we encountered a nice selection of microbrewed cask ales – maybe not CAMRA LocAle but good nonetheless. The food was excellent and very reasonably priced. Ale choices included Sharp’s Doom Bar for example, and a couple of others from St Austell Brewery, which provided a nice balance. I think Spririt House is on to something here and with their other two locations: the Warwick and the Queen’s Head, I hope it works.

The Moderation: recommended 🙂


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