a.k.a. Lynn lovelies.
I wanted to use “Kings of Lynn” as a title but Pubmeister beat me to it. His quite brilliant post also has the best lines and unmatchable photos, but if I didn’t do a piece I’d be doing Lynn (no-one apart from a royalist Scot would call it King’s Lynn) a disservice.
And you never know, her Majesty might want a guide to the best pubs when she visits from Sandringham.
40 minutes on the train from Waterbeach; about 3 days for Curry Charles from Dereham if he repeats this trip with me, and he should. Though I can’t vouch for Norfolk curry (except in Dereham, oddly).
I couldn’t really have vouched for Lynn as a pub destination either. The sole GBG entry is a workaday hotel bar opening at 6pm. Every day.
But Duncan isn’t called Duncan for nothing, and he’d uncovered a wealth of gems not in the Guide. Perhaps not including this one across from the station.
I used to visit Lynn a few times a year, and throughout the 2000s had seen it lose its gloss as a result of a number of factors, not all of them originating in 2007.
Ten years ago it got a Canadian themed makeover that has at least ensured you can buy coffee and socks.
But there’s still enough independent enterprise in the pedestrianised shopping street. I got a new watch strap fitted for £6 while I perused the fish van.
Even 4 seabass fillets for £12 (that’s cheap, Yanks) can’t guarantee busy shops, and the fantastic waterfront is only busy in the bits where it has coffee and cakes.
Duncan had raved, sort of, about the Crown & Mitre. I’d never heard of it.
If the green light is on, it’s open, apparently. All three lights were on.
Duncan described the character of Landlord Roger beautifully.
“The word ‘character’ can be a euphemism for many things. One of Roger’s is a penchant for sharing his political views with great vigour. It’s safe to say he doesn’t consider himself to be very European.”
Comparisons are easy, and lazy, and pointless. So I’ll say the Crown & Mitre is Norfolk’s answer to the Albion in Chester.
But it had better beer.
I feared the worst. But both Elgoods seasonal and the Lincoln Imperial (?) were cool and rich and Beer Guide worthy (NBSS 3/3.5).
The pub grub was exactly what you expected, I’ll wager.
There’s a lovely outdoor decking area from where you can enjoy the muddy Ouse.
Roger has even provided binoculars (chained to the outside bar) so you can spot invading pub tickers.
I ate indoors, so I had the benefits of Roger’s views on Beeching, our royalty (don’t ask) and “Witherspoons“. Those of a nervous disposition need not apply.
But Roger is knocking out good beer and food in a characterful and well-run pub at the age of 76, which makes me look a right layabout.
And I warmed to him when an unsuspecting couple of gentlefolk came to the bar.
“Oh. only 2 beers ?” said Mr Choosy. Patient explanation re: matching beers to demand.
“Can I have a taster then ?” said Mr Choosy.
“Half or pint ? We don’t do tasters.” said Roger.
“A pint’s a taster” I chipped in, unhelpfully.
I bet even Her Majesty wouldn’t get samples.