A pub is a type of drinking establishment that also serves food. Most pubs focus on alcoholic drinks, but some also sell soft drinks, tea and coffee. Many serve meals, and some are upscale gastro-pubs that offer food in the style of fine dining.
A key part of British culture, pubs have a long history of bringing people together. They are a place to go for a drink, to meet friends and to catch up on the local gossip. The best ones have a sense of history, embodied in the sticky tabletops and the landlord’s tales that are so much a part of the local landscape. They are the places where generations of villagers have laughed, argued and cried together.
In addition to beer, most pubs serve a range of other alcoholic beverages and some non-alcoholic drinks such as tea, coffee, water and juice. Some pubs have specific themes such as a biker bar, a sports bar or a gay bar. They may also host special events such as pub quizzes, karaoke nights and music performances.
In recent years, pubs have been in decline. In the UK, around 400 pubs closed last year and the number has been falling steadily. The closures have been caused by a variety of factors including rising costs and the introduction of a smoking ban. The challenge for the future is to ensure that those that do survive are worthy of the name rather than identikit flat-pack boozers.