After Hours: The Avery
April 30, 2008
CAMBRIDGE — “You can’t take those nuts!”
The barkeep’s plea fell on deaf ears. Clad in shades and a backward hat as rain poured down on The Avery pub’s smoking area, the man with the peanuts he hadn’t paid for obliged the concerned employee by dumping his ill-gotten acquisition on the ground.
His suddenly defiant act stood in stark contrast to just five minutes earlier, when he sang “Surfin’ U.S.A.” in front of a bemused Stripes U.K. crew.
It’s not London, Birmingham or any other major British city, but Cambridge still has its characters. And sitting smack downtown on Parker’s Piece, The Avery is in a prime place to attract all types of weirdos, students and those just looking to have a pint … or five.
The same night that “Surfin’ U.S.A.” tried to steal some nuts, a man in a porkpie hat stood at the bar spitting unintelligible gibberish. Another man nearly sat on a Striper’s lap and proceeded to open a bottle of ketchup he had brought with him.
Still, The Avery isn’t all cockney kooks.
In business as The Avery for about five years, the 250-seat, two-level pub was originally a factory that produced the world-famous Avery scales, manager Stuart Carpenter said.
Aside from plenty of seats and a gorgeous view of the park, The Avery is an adults-only pub, so there won’t be any little kids to make it awkward when you order that third pint on a Saturday afternoon.
In fact, it’s one of those perfectly cozy pubs to lose an afternoon in. There’s always a variety of soccer or rugby matches on various TVs, and the place also sports two pool tables.
“In the summer months, we get a lot of guys in who were playing football or Frisbee in the park,” Carpenter said. As a result, pints in plastic cups are also available.
The Avery sports a pretty decent and affordable menu, as well.
It’s standard pub grub, but as the dollar continues its free fall and we all wait for that $2.50-to-the-pound exchange rate, The Avery offers two meals for just 9 pounds throughout the week.
Be sure to try the black-and-blue burger, a hefty chunk of Angus beef, topped with bacon and blue cheese.
“It really goes down well,” Carpenter said.
Just make sure you pay for the peanuts.
Location: 69 Regent St. Cambridge, CB2 1AB.Hours: Noon to 11 p.m., Sunday through Thursday; noon to midnight, Friday and Saturday.Phone: 01223 323405.