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Beer of the Week (w/e 25th October 2020) with Bucking Fastard on the Pub Forum

The Woodman, Birmingham

New Canal Street
B5 5LG
Phone: 01216434960

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Reviews (Current Rating Average: of 10) Add Review see review guidelines

Please Note: This review is over a year old.

Al Bundy left this review about The Woodman

A good little boozer. This two and a half roomed pub is very traditional in a Victorian style. White tiled walls throughout the main front bar. The L-shaped bar has a good variety of real Alex and real ciders on handpull. Slightly out of the way of the city centre and near enough to Birmingham City's ground for it to be full of City fans on my Saturday afternoon visit. I liked it.

On 11th August 2019 - rating: 8
[User has posted 3389 recommendations about 3303 pubs]

Please Note: This review is over a year old.

Just a quick pint, then I'm off left this review about The Woodman

One of three surviving pub buildings in a large area cleared for redevelopment some time ago, with the others being the Eagle & Tun and the Fox & Grapes (the latter closed and looking very forlorn). Its only immediate neighbour is the iconic Curzon Street station; but with the Eastside scheme ongoing, and plans for the HS2 terminus moving forward, this area could be soon be on the way back up. Anyway, its all a big change from its previous downmarket incarnation, with a big effort put into making the best of the remaining heritage features (despite some serious vandalism early in 2013, just before the refurbishment was due to start). The bar back lost its original clock, but is otherwise still imposing. Most of the original tiling remains, and the one remaining etched door window pane was used as a pattern for replacements. Large clear windows in the 'L'-shaped bar give plenty of light, although the rear Smoke Room (with its serving hatch) is rather darker. A small snug has also been created from a previously disused room to one side. On this visit, I found a total of six real ales in a variety of styles from the two banks of five handpumps, including two from Castle Rock and Dark Drake from Dancing Duck Brewery (£3.50).

On 10th September 2017 - rating: 8
[User has posted 6175 recommendations about 6175 pubs]

Please Note: This review is over a year old.

Ian Mapp left this review about The Woodman

First time in, but it won't be the last.

Remnant from a street that has long gone. Reminded me of the Blackfriar in London. But not quite as ornate.

Tiled victorian pub with at least two rooms, upstairs function and sheltered smoking area.

7 real ales on. I went for the Castle Rock Black Gold. Not because it was £2 a pint but because it was a reminder of past travels in Nottingham.

Well worth popping into - and there is a loyalty scheme between this, Post Office Vaults and Wellington where you get a free pint on your sixth stamp.

On 26th May 2016 - rating: 8
[User has posted 688 recommendations about 682 pubs]

Please Note: This review is over a year old.

Mark Davey left this review about The Woodman

Excellent pub in a bleak part of town, due for re-development. Loads of beer choice on the bar. the place was packed with younger (student) types during our Saturday afternoon visit. Some strange card and multi faceted dice games were being played in the front bar, taking up many of the seats, so we headed for the very clean and tidy upstairs room, via an extremely steep set of winding stairs. Really good beer, food on offer and friendly staff. great pub, will be back.

On 28th April 2016 - rating: 8
[User has posted 292 recommendations about 276 pubs]

Please Note: This review is over a year old.

General Staal left this review about The Woodman

This is a cracking pub with some delightful ales. However some, like the Castle Rock Harvest Pale and Black Gold, are 'southern' style and do not hold their heads. They are definitely not flat however. There is also Marston's Oyster Stout on Smooth and a range of bottled beers.

There are three rooms, the main one wraps around the bar and is long and thin. To the left of the bar, this room leads into a smaller room. On the right, and with a separate entrance and a 'hatch' service opening to the main bar, is the self contained Smoke Room. Bizarrely, the entrance to the Ladies' toilet is in the middle of this small room. The Gents' and another Ladies' are out in the Courtyard where the long Bar Room leads off to the left.

The Victorian tiling is stunning. This pub is an architectural gem.

I get the distinct feeling that the Woodman is a work in progress. There appear to have been innumerable problems during the course of renovating the building. On my first visit, the builders were still in. I think that the staff and management are doing a wonderful job. The Woodman was supposed to serve food, but they have only just got the kitchen up and running. To cover this gap, they do serve delicious cobs and pork pies.

The atmosphere is very friendly and on both occasions I have visited, the pub was very busy. The staff were warm and welcoming.

I really like this pub and its beer. I think as time moves on and the final pieces of the jigsaw fall into place, the Woodman will become a destination to slake one's thirst on an amazing range of beer.

Highly recommended.

##UPDATE## 24 April 2014 - Food is now on. It is good and reasonably priced.

On 24th April 2014 - no rating submitted
[User has posted 142 recommendations about 125 pubs]

Please Note: This review is over a year old.

Real Ale Ray left this review about The Woodman

A splendid Victorian pub and well worth a visit. A couple of features I noticed were the heated cast iron foot rests along the front counter and the wall fixings where the gas mantles would have illuminated the snug.
This may be coincidence, after reading Danny's review below, as I believe I was the guy at the bar complaining about the flat beer, last Friday afternoon. The barmaid was very helpful and changed it for a Slaters Top Totty, which also went flat after a few minutes sitting in the snug. Mrs Ale's beer also went flat as a pancake. The reason for this is poor cellar management, as they're venting the ale too long, which allows all the gas to escape.
I will give the pub another go when they get their act together. The barmaid was pleasant, but annoyingly she was constantly coughing into her hand and then picking up your glass. This pub defo needs fine tuning.

On 9th October 2013 - rating: 6
[User has posted 2976 recommendations about 2976 pubs]

Please Note: This review is over a year old.

Danny O'Revey left this review about The Woodman

Revisit 4th October 2013:

Now again reopened, this time with the team behind the Post Office Vaults in the City Centre. Its had a little bit of tarting up, but is really a basic Victorian boozer. The bar area to the front feels a little uncomforatable for some reason, its a bit cavernous maybe, and there is a tiled lounge at the rear. Despite the basic nature it does hold a nice historic look with its features.

A bloke at the bar was complaining about the flat beer, or at least it having no head (similar issue with SD below, unless they were one and the same!) but my pint of Oakham was excellent & there were 6 other real ales, and also a selection of newspapers and ready made sandwiches.

Altogether a nice experience and a very welcome addition to Eastside.


2010: Now reopened...well, sort of. Back open as a pub, but there is no draft beer, only bottled. I get the impression this Council owned building, blighted by awaiting a decision on development in Eastside, is being allowed to open short term on the cheap so that someone is using this listed building, its better for a building to be used after all.

But its truely dreadful & uncomfortable.

On 7th October 2013 - rating: 8
[User has posted 1276 recommendations about 1253 pubs]

Please Note: This review is over a year old.

Soup Dragon left this review about The Woodman

This pub, and the Eagle and Tun (currently closed) have a special place in my heart, for family history reasons. It was good to visit for the first time in 4 years or so, due to its closure. The pub is now detached, but was once a corner pub that formed a part of the densely packed Italian and Irish quarter - facing the old Curzon St station offices (later goods yard). It was built in 1897, replacing earlier buildings on the site and the American Inn, next door. It is in the typical red brick of the period, with moulding, decorative gables and large rounded lower windows. The interior has three rooms. The main room is an L-shaped bar. This room has fantastic glazed tiles, with a red ceiling and grey lino. The first snug is in the same tiling, with an impressive fireplace and the old bell-pushes on the walls. The second snug is in patterned wallpaper and red walls. A few old photos are on the walls. There is no TV and there is no music. The service was friendly and it was busy with a mixed clientele - including families. Beer; Freedom keg drinks, with a real cider and the following handpulls were on: Whale Pale Ale, Oakham 20 years, Single Hop Wakatu, Green Duck's Count Duckula, Slater's Top Totty, Castle Rock Harvest Pale Ale and Black Gold (decent), as well as Dorothy Goodbody's Autumn Delight (which was delightful). A great real ale pub and a great building - the only downside is that I like a head on my beer! I will be back.

On 6th October 2013 - no rating submitted
[User has posted 3053 recommendations about 3048 pubs]

Please Note: This review is over a year old.

Chris Kilmister left this review about The Woodman

The Woodman will be reopening 27 September 2013 as a real ale pub, looking forward to it

On 24th September 2013 - no rating submitted
[User has posted 12 recommendations about 10 pubs]