THE owner of a popular pint-sized pub has welcomed its 500th beer.
The Rat Race pub, in Hartlepool Railway Station, opened just under two and a half years ago but has already reached the milestone.
Owner Pete Morgan, 46, said he thought reaching 200 beers would be a good achievement when he opened the doors to the pub in 2009.
But after pulling his first pint of the 500th beer, Wentworth Black Zac, he beamed: “Now for the next 500.”
Pete, who lives in Trimdon Station, said: “If someone had asked me when I opened whether I would reach 500 beers, I would have scratched my chin and then told them I wasn’t too confident.
“It’s gone a lot better than expected and if someone asked me now whether we would reach 1,000, I would say definitely.”
Pete was expecting to finally hit the 500 mark today or tomorrow but a busy day last Saturday which saw the pub welcome dozens of visiting Sheffield United fans before their league match at Victoria Park meant he ran out of the 499th beer late Saturday afternoon.
The 499th beer was Elland 1872 Porter, Pete’s favourite of all of the beers he has stocked in the pub.
Pete can look back on every single ale he has stocked as he has kept a mat of each one, making an impressive display on the wall in the pub.
And he does not plan to rest on what he has already achieved. He welcomes new beers into the pub every three days meaning the number will continue to rise.
“I try to get a good variety of beers all of the time,” added Pete.
“Everybody has a different taste and I like to be able to attract as many good beer drinkers as possible.”