A week ago I had to leave Mrs RM in the luxurious Newhaven Premier Inn while I did the hard yards ticking West Sussex.
You won’t believe the planning that goes into these trips. TWO (2) train changes on the way to Portslade, the Cheadle of the South.
You won’t believe how filthy those Southern rail service were, either.
Luckily the traffic is still stationary at the crossing and 20 seconds later I’m at the door.
Generally my rule would be “Avoid pubs with a giant ice cream cone and a Good Times slogan“.
But us fearless Guide tickers have to take the high tabled micro along with the table service gastro and the quirky upmarket pub for west Brighton’s youth.
But queues ? What have I done to deserve this ?*
Only one point for service, it seems, where orders for tacos and tequilas are being taken.
I join the queue, and check the return trains towards Lewes my next target. One has been cancelled, so my best bet leaves in five (5) minutes. Five minutes to order and consume a pint (and I WAS having a pint) and get through the ticket barrier to the platform.
Never in doubt. Lovely service, they probably have that fast pour or something.
The Harvey’s felt a dull choice, but I reckoned it would be 22% easier to neck than beers called “Chop”, “Highs” or “Haze”.
And I was right. But let it be said the Sussex Best was cool and rich and gorgeous (3.5+), better than in Borough if I’m honest, and I am.
And the pub was full of happy 25 year olds, enjoying good beer and ambient chill.
No time to stay, and my prompt departure from the table made someone’s evening anyway.
At 19:10 I was at Portslade Station, heading back to Lewes for a critical tick in the battle to complete East Sussex before BRAPA.
Blimey, they like it dark in the Royal Oak, don’t they ?
No warning on Facebook of course, though that page had been updated that very day (I’d checked). So I’ll have to come back to Lewes, which I guess is no hardship, unless the Travelodge costs £109. It’s a gorgeous pub town, and in 2006 the Chinese takeaway there scored NCTSS 4.5.
*Yes, I realise some people are happy with queues. They’re the same people who like tasters, those jam jars on the bar and table reservations in “pubs”.