27 February 2012

Pubs, thus far.

In addition to logging my pub visits on the Pub Tracker page (my mission is a new pub each week for as long as I can manage), I decided to also do individual posts for each pub trip.  Since I'm all caught up now, I'm bunching the first 7 together in this post.

25 Feb 2012 - The Slug and Lettuce, County Hall, London

I went to The Slug and Lettuce as part of an American expat Meetup on a Saturday afternoon.  I accidentally ordered a cider instead of a beer (::blushes::  Lame, I know, but I'm still learning!).  The Strongbow was great though, and I preferred it to the ciders I used to have in the not so distant past, such as Ace and Woodchuck, when I had not yet developed the palate for beer.  The Slug and Lettuce was definitely the most modern styled pub I've been to thus far.  I guess it's more of a bar than a pub?  The Meetup group had a private sunken section with comfy leather couches and stools, which were great for conversation.  Overall, I thought it was very nice.  I didn't try the food, but maybe next time.

18 Feb 2012 - The Sun, Redhill, Surrey

I hit up The Sun on a Saturday afternoon with my husband.  This pub is huge and located in the center of Redhill.  The crowd was fairly mixed, but consisted mostly of men who were watching sports on the big screen (soccer maybe? I don't even know).  There were quite a few little kids running around too.  After perusing the menu, however, I realized that The Sun is the kind of place college kids would go to get wasted.  The menu had all sorts of shenanigans like Jager bombs, flights of 5 shots for £5, and cocktail pitchers for £10 (add 2 extra shots of vodka for £2!).  Truthfully, that just made me miss my girlfriends back home.  I know they would love to join me for a pitcher and a trip down memory lane.  But, since I was on a lunch date with the husband and not a girls' night out, I played it safe and had a Carlsberg.  To eat, we split a gourmet burger which came with onion rings and chips (fries).  My husband ordered chicken strips as a starter.  You kinda can't go wrong with chicken strips, but they made me miss Arby's sauce!  HP sauce is a poor substitute!

6 Feb 2012 - The Red Lion, Redhill, Surrey

We visited The Red Lion on a cold Monday night.  The pub was mostly empty, unsurprisingly.  There were just a couple handful of people scattered about, some at the bar, and some sitting alone at tables.  I had a Sharp's Doom Bar and the gammon steak with pineapple, my husband had the Kent sausages and some beer I don't remember.  I was definitely out-ordered in the food department.  The gammon steak was not good, but the sausages were.  The Doom Bar was really good though and I definitely liked the atmosphere of the pub in general.  It was a nice size, but dark and cozy at the same time.  There was a dog in residence too, which earns this place a few bonus points in my book. 

4 Feb 2012 - The White Lion, Redhill, Surrey

This pub is a very small, old one at the top of a hill in Redhill.  The restaurant part of this pub serves Thai food, which is quite different from your usual pub fare.  In the tiny front bar area a group of men were watching soccer (that's right, I said it, soccer).  We went around to the back to enjoy our beers on the leather couches by a tiny little furnace.  I want to say my beer was called Fire Starter or something, but I don't know that for a fact (edit: I think it was Inferno).  It was a guest beer.  To eat, we had dumplings and chicken satay, both of which were good.  But the best part of the night was walking home in the freshly fallen snow.  Overall, I liked the atmosphere, and I'll surely be back.

29 Jan 2012 - The Jolly Farmers Deli Pub & Restaurant, Reigate, Surrey

I don't know if this should really count as a pub trip, because I didn't have beer.  We were looking for a place to have lunch around Reigate and I found Jolly Farmers online.  It was a cold afternoon, and I had a mulled wine instead of a beer, but no regrets, because it was perfect.  My husband and I ordered the blue cheese creme brûlée with toast and pears as an appetizer, and it was truly delicious.  As a main, I had the Chris Major's burger which was also really very good.  My husband had some sort of roast which was just okay.  The pub/restaurant was pretty well packed on a late Sunday afternoon and service was slow, but the quality of the food made up for it.

27 Jan 2012 - The Sausage Tree, High Wycombe, Buckinghamshire

We went to this pub with a friend of my husband's and some friends of his friend.  I had the Welsh Rarebit sausage plate, a Hoegaarden Rose, and later on, a good ol' American Blue Moon.  The Hoegaarden Rose, a raspberry brew, was good and not too sweet.  I'm not really a fruity beer gal, but I enjoyed it.  And you can't go wrong with a Blue Moon.  The Welsh Rarebit sausage was delightful, and I definitely out-ordered my husband who had the Pheasant and Whisky sausage.  A few people at our table got the Black Rock Grill plates, which looked pretty lame.  What am I paying you for if I have to cook my own food?   The place was packed full of fancy people on a Friday night.  I felt underdressed in my black skinny jeans, long sleeved tee, and scarf.  But, all in all, an enjoyable evening.

19 Jan 2012 - The Plumbers Arms, Victoria, London

When I went to this pub, I'd been in the UK for just under a week.  I went up to London with my husband for the day.  I wandered Kensington Gardens and Hyde Park while he went to his business meeting, and then we met up for an early fish and chips dinner at The Plumbers Arms before catching the train back down to Surrey.  The pub wasn't very busy (late afternoon before the work crowd hit) and the loudest group in the pub was some men whose sole topic of conversation was pubs and the travesty of corporate-owned pubs.  The fish and chips were okay (are fish and chips ever better than okay?).  Sadly, I don't even remember what kind of beer I had.  Whatever it was, it was a little hoppy for me.  One down side to this pub was that the ~bathroom scents~ made their way out of the bathroom and into the main pub area.  Maybe that's to be expected at a place with Plumber in the name?  Not the best.

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