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Picture of The Fat Cat
Image posted by Nigel Sheppard
Submitted on Friday, 22nd May 2009
With picture contributions to 113 other pubs
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The Fat Cat, Ipswich

288 Spring Road
Phone: 01473726524
Correct details

Served areas

Reviews of The Fat Cat (Average Rating: 9 of 10) Add Review see review guidelines

Blue Scrumpy left this review about The Fat Cat

Having been to the three Fat Cat pubs in Norwich, I was expecting this to be the highlight of my day in Ipswich. It was the only pub where reservations are compulsory. There were tables available when I arrived and after I left. So, I'm not sure if I would have been accommodated if I had not booked. I do hate having to book, as my day had to revolve around the booked time for this pub.

After initially being shown to the "wrong" table, I was moved to the correct one. Although, most were undercover, in any case.

As was expected, the ale and cider range was good - Crouch Vale Brewers Gold & Yakima Gold, Adnams Mosaic, Vocation Heart & Soul, Woodforde's Wherry & Norfolk Nog, Black Sheep Best Bitter, Sharp's Doom Bar, Mighty Oak Oscar Wilde, Lilley's Mango Cider, Saxby's Plum Cider & Celtic Marches Cracklin' Rosie Perry & Slack Alice.

This is undoubtedly a good pub, but the experience did not match that of the original Fat Cat in Norwich. It may have been due to a more limited beer and cider range than normal or perhaps due to the outdoor drinking arrangements, but I was slightly disappointed.

On 1st May 2021 - rating: 7
[User has posted 434 recommendations about 434 pubs]

Please Note: This review is over a year old.

Pub SignMan left this review about The Fat Cat

Located a good 15 minute walk to the east of the town centre, the Fat Cat is a destination ale house where the beer is the undoubted star. The pub has a fairly simple two room set up, with the front door leading you into a bare boarded, C shaped room which runs around a well worn looking servery on the right hand side. There are a few seating options in this bar area, although most customers on my visit were perched on stools around the back of the bar. A Fat Cat mirror hangs in the rear corner and the walls have been decorated with a few bits of breweriana including several enamel beer signs. There is a separate room off to the left which has red half panelled walls and a red and black checked tile floor. One bench runs along the left hand wall, with low stools making up the remaining seating options. There are more brewery signs on display here as well as partitioning ledges which double as book shelves for the pub's book swap scheme. To the rear of the pub, there is a conservatory style space with a reasonably large garden beyond, with plenty of benches which were proving popular on a warm spring afternoon. There was no music playing during my stay and I didn't spot a TV screen either, with the buzz of conversation creating a decent atmosphere.
There were only two ales on handpull when I arrived, but a quick check of the beer board hung above the servery, confirmed that the majority of the ales were poured straight from the barrel in the taproom next door. The options on this visit were Crouch Vale Brewers Gold (£3.20) and Yakima Gold, Sharps Doom Bar, Fullers London Pride, Woodfordes Wherry, Box Steam Tunnel Vision, Green Jack Orange Wheat and Rising Sun, Oakham JHB, Exmoor Gold, Brains Little Sipper, Red Fox Mild, RCH Old Slug Porter, St Peter's Golden, Fat Cat Number 8, Humpty Dumpty Swallowtail and Maudons Suffolk Pride. Two real ciders were also available and the boards also listed a good range of Belgian bottles. I decided to try the Crouch Vale Brewers Gold, which was okay, but not quite in the sort of sparkling condition I had hoped for.
This is clearly one of the best pubs in Ipswich for ale drinkers and the lack of modern distractions should also please traditionalists, although I'm not sure the pub has the wider appeal of the nearby Dove Street Inn. An essential addition to any crawl around town, but equally tempting to stay for a while and work through that beer list.

On 23rd May 2014 - rating: 8
[User has posted 2546 recommendations about 2546 pubs]

Please Note: This review is over a year old.

Old Boots left this review about The Fat Cat

A permanent beer festival type pub, or “Free Mouse” as it calls itself, about a mile and a quarter from the Tower Ramparts bus station, it's near the hospital so buses are frequent if you don't fancy a long publess walk uphill from the Dove or Lilly's Bar. A very basic drinking house, a disappointing two handpumps on the bar but you may have noticed some racked barrels in a side room as you entered. This so called Tap Room holds about 15 beers on gravity, details of which are naturally given on boards above the bar counter, all normally from smaller breweries including Kelham Island as it appears to be linked to the Sheffield and Norwich Fat Cats. The main bar is a large square room with one corner walled off to form the counter and tap room, painted in garish yellows and with red tongue and groove. To one side is a wide corridor room with benches, tables and chairs and at the back a shed like, flag floored but still a little posh, drinking / eating room. You may have take-away food delivered for consumption on the premises and the pub will provide cutlery and crockery as well as fine ale to wash down your curry, pizza or Chinese, this service is quite rightly not available Friday and Saturday nights. In addition the pub does pub-like food of its own. Décor is enamel brewery signs, mirrors and other beer advertising ephemera, the staff are great and the punters certainly not as CAMRA like as I expected considering its GBG listing and range of excellently kept beer. No dogs or children are allowed in.

On 24th March 2010 - no rating submitted
[User has posted 2299 recommendations about 2130 pubs]

View more reviews of The Fat Cat (6)
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Pub location see interactive map of local area
Map location corrected by Old Boots
Derby Road (Ipswich), 0.7 miles, 13 min walk (show)
Ipswich, 1.87 miles, 36 min walk (show)
Westerfield, 2.25 miles, 43 min walk (show)
Latest updates View all updates for The Fat Cat, Ipswich
1st May 2021, 13:49
Review submitted by Blue Scrumpy
11th Sep 2016, 08:43
Review submitted by train man

Pub Details

Pub details supplied by members of this site to the best of their knowledge. Please check with pub directly before making a special trip.

  • Accommodation : No last updated 23 May 2014 by Pub SignMan
  • Bar Billiards : No last updated 23 May 2014 by Pub SignMan
  • Beer Garden : Yes last updated 23 May 2014 by Pub SignMan
  • Child Friendly : No last updated 23 May 2014 by Pub SignMan
  • Dog Friendly : No - Not allowed in - last updated 24 March 2010 by Alan Hurdle
  • Hot Food : Yes last updated 23 May 2014 by Pub SignMan
  • Jukebox : No last updated 23 May 2014 by Pub SignMan
  • Karaoke : No last updated 23 May 2014 by Pub SignMan
  • Live TV Sports : No last updated 23 May 2014 by Pub SignMan
  • Pinball : No last updated 23 May 2014 by Pub SignMan
  • Pool Table : No last updated 23 May 2014 by Pub SignMan
  • Real Ale : Yes last updated 24 March 2010 by Alan Hurdle
  • Real Cider : Yes last updated 23 May 2014 by Pub SignMan
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