Having been a regular at Beerwolf for some time, during spells where freelance work was thin on the ground, I was lucky enough to do some shifts behind ‘The UK’s coolest bar’. As such, I felt compelled to celebrate all the wonderful things about Beerwolf that can’t always be seen to the untrained eye.
Of course, it is a place that many of us in Falmouth are proud of. Of course, every time it is recognised in a ‘cool places’ list our hearts burst with joy, our wallets grumble and our legs hotfoot us down. It’s in the name, and of course these things make up an essential part of the pub’s identity. But anyone who lives in Falmouth and really spends time in there will know there’s so much more to Beerwolf than beer and books.
Staff at the Wolf quickly become friends because they’re good at their jobs and are friendly. But these people have not been selected by accident. They are all committed to the ethos of community and sustainability that underlies Beerwolf. When one staff member announced his partner was having a baby, the owner began a collection towards buying him a car.
The place is about community and it’s about creating a world that rejects the status quo. Everyone is welcome, and everyone is made to feel a part of the space. There is no card machine, which is often met with a roll of the eyes but it’s in keeping with Beerwolf’s nostalgia that anyone has to pop to the bank and use real money when they visit.
Whilst writers often give attention to the fact that the beers lean toward craft, they rarely notice that many of them are vegetarian. A passing pint won’t allow you to see that almost all spirits are independent. Straws are not given, they must be asked for, and are made from recyclable plastic.
Cups of tea in the daytime are £1. The best coffee in town £1.50. There’s WiFi and no questions are asked of any of the students or creatives who hole up and use the place as an office. Lurking at the back sits Creature from the Black Lagoon, or ‘Creature’ as it’s known. A classic pinball machine, it is free to use, and attracts some of Falmouth’s gaming community. At the weekends table tennis is free, attracting anyone who enjoys a ping and a pong.
Coolness is in the eye of the beholder, and the coolest thing about Beerwolf is its rejection of cool. Everyone who visits is cool: hipsters, geeks, students, beer enthusiasts, bookish introverts, alcoholic extroverts, and anyone in between.