I came to Montpellier to learn the French language and culture. I chose to do an immersion course at a French language school in Montpellier because I wanted to be right in the thick of it from day one. It has been an amazing experience so far and I’m convinced it’s the best way to learn French but what I’ve noticed is that the more time I spend in another culture the more I appreciate my own. Some of the little things that are just regular in Britain are absent and sometimes I feel a fondness for something I’d never even noticed before leaving my home country. The feel and character of the British pub is a perfect example.
I was discussing this with some of the other students at my French language school in Montpellier and they asked me what makes a pub different from a bar. Now they both do the same thing; they are places you can go buy drinks and maybe some food but there is something extremely distinct about a pub. A cosiness, an ambience maybe and a welcoming feel. You can imagine all types coming to a pub, a professor coming to ponder over a pint or a stag do at its most feral. When some other students at my French immersion school told me there was a really good pub called ‘Shakespeare’ in Montpellier I had to check it out.
Good News; It’s Very Near the French Language School
The pub is a 5 minute walk from the school and can be easily found on google maps. In case you can’t find it start from the French Immersion School and head up the road as though you are going to Musée Fabre and just keep going straight until you pass the Bliss beauty salon and turn left, immediately turn right and you should be able to see it. A nice big rustic doorway with a sandwich board chalked up with the latest gigs and offers. They do all sorts of different events which we will discuss later.
As you go in you see that dim, warm colour scheme that makes it feel like you in someone’s home. It’s not the biggest pub but that just adds to the convivial atmosphere. When I went for the first time I recognised some other people who had also come to study French at our immersion school. This isn’t a student bar though; there are all ages and types here. They have a good selection of beers as well with the traditional draught pumps or bottles as well lots of other choices. A pleasant surprise was that they sell cheesy nachos at quite a decent price, a very nice touch.
French Students Welcome Says the Boss
I got chatting to the boss who was behind the bar and I told him I was doing a French language course here in Montpellier. His face lit up, he said he gets loads of French students coming in partly due to the fact that all of the staff can speak English as well as French. He also said an incredibly fun way of learning some more French was to come along to the pub quiz that they have every Tuesday, he said they read out the rules and questions in French first and then in English so everyone can understand and get involved. He also described all of the other events they do and it sounded like quite a lively place with special drinks offers on various nights.
The place certainly satisfied my craving for a British pub, I haven’t been to a pub quiz in ages and I will certainly be getting a group of students from my French language school together to come for an evening or two. It’s a great opportunity to try out what you been learning with your host families or on your French immersion course.