St. Petersburg Wanderings…

Hugh Gatenby

On a visit to Russia’s ‘Cultural Capital’, our roving correspondent Hugh Gatenby finds time, with his sketchbook, to indulge in his highly academic research of ‘Pabovedinye‘ – the study of Russian pubs. Hugh, we eagerly await your dissertation (editor).

Now Fiddler’s Green is a place I’ve heard tell,
Where fisherman go if they don’t go to hell,
Where the skies are all clear and the dolphins do play,
And the cold coast of Greenland is far, far away…

The above is all true of course, but Fiddler’s Green is also a wonderful St. Petersburg pub, quite exquisite in its simplicity. It is the venture, and labour of love, of a young man called Victor- or Vitya, to his friends. А wiry ex-sailor, linguist and intrepid adventurer; Victor has made this pub a paean to the seafaring profession. Unlike most Russian bars it is service strictly at the bar.  Stools are screwed down ‘in case of storms.’ Visiting swarthy sailors, tourists and St. Petersburg hipsters alike are presented at the bar with a one-way manila ‘boarding pass’, on which the night’s drinking tally is kept. Should you be feeling at all peckish, the cook will have chalked up, on the blackboard, the one available meal of the day. Eat your fill, batten down the hatches, and then back to the more serious business of sampling the various craft ales, or the seemingly endless range of spirits.

Situated just off St. Petersburg’s ultra-swish Nevsky Prospect, its frontage and its interior décor are modest but tasteful – qualities which few Russian pubs can boast. The walls are adorned with black-and-white photos of sailors of many nations; French, Russian, Japanese, American and others. Photos of much-tattooed matelots vie for wall space with old metal advertising signs, which, like the range of spirits behind the bar, Victor has collected on his world travels. Indeed, what stops this place from becoming just yet another themed pub is his drive and passion, which pervades the place. 

Fiddlers Green is the one pub in this world that I can say, without a word of lie, “Been there. Got the T-shirt”. And much like the pub, very tasteful it is too. Cheers, Victor!

Wrap me up in me oilskins and jumper,
No more on the docks I’ll be seen,
Just tell me old shipmates, I’m taking a trip mates,
And I’ll see you some day on Fiddler’s Green.

Классный питерский паб, Fiddler’s Green (Сад Cкрипачев) является замечательным личным проектом молодого бывшего моряка и славного человека Виктора. Это не просто морско- тематический паб, это поэзия посвящена всем морякам из всех наций нашего мира. На стене висят чёрные-белые фотографии моряков много флотов – французы, британцы, русские, японцы, американцы…

Выбор вкусного пива обильный есть, и если хочется что-то покрепче, ну пожалуйста! Ряды бутылок стоят за баром, в том числе очень интересные виски. Голоден? Повар пишет на доске сегодняшний обед. Выбор тоже и есть. Кушать, или не кушать. Ладно, хватит уже об этом говорить! Приезжай, заходи!

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