Apart from winding up Mrs RM, one of the ambitions of this blog is to find something positive to say about the lesser lights of our great land.
Epsom shouldn’t need much help, with regular visits by Her Majesty to the Downs, but I don’t think she’s ever done an overnighter in the shiny new Travelodge.
Travelodge have really opened up South London and Surrey for intrepid pub tickers, though even I was taken back by Simon’s courage in spending a Sunday in Croydon recently. Epsom has less drama than the Cronx, but better walking on the Common, and the odd bit of predictable street art.
You have to be a fan of new urban developments to appreciate Epsom Square, which is hardly the Spinningfields of the South. Dozens of chic Italian restaurants here, but for bants, head for the High Street.
The best actual banter was, as so often, in the Spoons. To find it, just follow the red corduroy trousers (no, not Simon). There really are a lot of well-heeled, if not well-dressed, old folk here.
But this was still Easter*, and therefore Spoons was filled with “Dads with Kids”, a neglected part of the pub demographic.
“Do you want ice in his smoothie ?”
Dad walks back to table 72 to ask Harry. He does.
“Do you want me to pour the sprinkles on top or let the little fella do it ?”
Dad walks back to table 72 to ask Harry. He doesn’t care.
That’s why you take so long to get served in Spoons these days. I only wanted a lightly smashed avocado bagel. I really will have to start ordering my £1.10 coffee on the App and getting table service.
Interesting to see such a strong craft keg range here (not the San Miguel), a bit of a suburban Spoons speciality, mirroring Feltham.
Like much of Surrey within the M25, it’s hard to find a real heart to traffic clogged Epsom, particularly since the Woolies closed. It feels a bit like Kingston, but without those intruding footballing Wombles and the pub with floppy disks for beer mats.
Not much history round the High Street, with the Albion the best looking pub still operating for it’s intended purpose, rather than as a converted Pizzeria.
It really is a scary, frustrating place to navigate on foot, so if I missed the best bits (again), I’m sorry. I liked the Playhouse, with it’s impending cultural offer to rival Stevenage;
Anyway, one new Beer Guide pub, which is how Epsom does things. And, NOT A MICROPUB.
That alone is recommendation enough for the Rifleman, but my heart sings to find a proper corner boozer looking immaculate with the sun streaming through the windows.
Don’t be put off by the words G****e K**g; they still make decent beer that some publicans then ruin. The house beer here was one of the best in a GK house all year, cool, smooth and rich (NBSS 3.5).
I reported Low played for my benefit yesterday, the Rifleman provided a post-punk soundtrack topped off with the Charlatans. 1990 is better than 1977, anyway.
*Yes, that’s how far behind I am. Will catch up this week.