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This is by way of an update, so please read the background here and the initial post here first. It all helps my stats and you, Dear Reader, to understand things.

Mum and I returned to the newly opened JDW, Captain James Lang in Dumbarton two days after our first trip. Mum had offered to pay, so why not? (She didn't as usual!) This time we were able to sit in one of the much coveted booths and see what was happening at the bar. I didn't give the cask beer a go at first - once bitten -twice shy and all that - but had a couple of pints of St Mungo Lager from West Brewery in Glasgow. Decent stuff, but perhaps they are being a bit fanciful to call it a cross between a Bavarian Helles and a North German Pilsner. At least in my view, though I must try that as an experiment if I ever have the chance to cross pollinate the two. Still, though as I said, it is good stuff.

I didn't see any cask being sold for a good while and then a guy asked for a pint of London Pride. It looked clear and he supped it with obvious enjoyment, returning not many minutes later for another. One or two more handpumps were now moving. Things cask wise were clearly looking up. I was deciding whether to plunge in, when I noticed a very tall guy at the bar, with shorts, a fleece top, a notebook and a mullet haircut. Bugger me if it wasn't Timbo himself. Tim Martin the boss man no less. I went over and said "Tim Martin?" "The same" quoth he amiably. We had a brief chat where I filled him in on the lack of cask beer in Dumbarton over the years and he asked me what I thought of the place. He was very pleasant and told me he'd been doing the rounds of some of his Scottish pubs and waved his bulging notebook at me "These are my observations" he boomed. As I ordered my pint of St Mungo he added "I'll get that". Splendid. What a guy.

As I pointed him out to my Mum, he went off on an inspection. I finished my pint and ordered a London Pride. It was rather good as Pride goes. There is hope as I suggested already and the staff were still trying hard.
I was very impressed that Tim was, sans entourage, going round his own pubs under what seemed to be his own steam. Can't see many Chairmen doing that. The photo is nicked from the web.