The backstreets of Reading are home to a new brewery and taproom, the Brewery is Phantom , its taproom is called The Haunt. All housed within the same large industrial unit just ten minutes or so’s walk from the train station. Once having negotiated the aforementioned backstreets I found the place. Was it actually open? Whatpub said it was, not always gospel as Iv’e found in the past, there were no signs of life apart from the catering van parked up to the side of the building, it seemed ready for business. The main shutters firmly closed I approached the small door to the right, any sensible person or a female would have just asked the bloke in the food van, but I’m a man and not wishing to appear foolish, toughed it out and tested the handle on the door with no sign saying “Beer In Here” or even a simple Open. It was to my relief open , I stepped inside from the barren wasteland outside and was surprised to see somewhere between twenty and thirty people inside. It was a big mostly open area with a number of picnic bench style seating tables well attended, the brewing kit clearly visible to the rear.
The actual Haunt from where the above picture was taken, is an open fronted , partitioned off bar area , complete with some slightly more comfortable seating, wall mounted heaters , fridge stocked with cans and bottles and importantly a bar.
It is a keg only bar, excluding the contents from the fridge, also important to know is that its a cashless operation, card only transactions, one more thing to beware of is the very limited opening hours, Fridays 3 pm – 10 pm , Saturdays 1 pm to 10 pm and that’s your lot. Should you negotiate the above criteria successfully, you’ll find a choice from thirteen keg taps along the back wall.
To save me writing out all the beers, you can see the selection here.
I tried Phantoms Feeling This Pale Ale and Waens St Clemens.
Both beers were very tasty, I’m not one to moan about over fizzed to cold keg beer but this was COLD, we’re talking impending brain freeze, that aside I quite enjoyed my couple of pints here and will look in again, probably in the summer though.