lists the pubs I like. It begins in the vicinity of Brighton station and
extends outwards from there in kind of widening gyre. The common
denominator is that they can be relied upon to serve good cask beer. So
far I've only done Brighton and (bits of) Sussex. More later!
As itís not
possible for me to be in every pub all the time (although itís an
intriguing thought) Iíd
be grateful for your corrections and updates.
updated April 2013
of Trafalgar, Guildford Road
freehouse with a garden.
Star, Surrey Street
Dark Star tied
house, but other interesting ales always available, plus Belgians.
Honeypot for real alers and tickers.
Arms, North Gardens
Well run Sheps
tenancy in a quiet side street. Terrace and function
room to rear, plus pool.
Head, Queens Road
Used to be a real dive, but this pub opposite the station - despite
still displaying some of the rough edges that come with being opposite a
station - has raised its game in the past year. An interesting beer
selection - cask and keg - is the main reason to visit. Footy on the big
House, Market Street
of Brighton's oldest pubs, the Pump House is now in the care of
M&B's Nicholson's Inns
chain which has installed an interesting, and constantly changing,
selection of cask beers, mostly from micros.
Mesmerist, Prince Albert Street - Web
Old Orleans is now a splendid and spacious proper pub over two floors with
frequent live music and general partying.
Quadrant, Queens Road
Opposite the Clock
Tower, a good place to meet Ė and wait for a bus. Quite nice upstairs, apart
from them blasted table lamps.
Inn, The Lanes
service marks this pub out. They even took the sink apart to find my
Head, Brighton Place
In the heart of the Lanes this Druids (definitely not to be confused
with the other one) is a little touristy but serves a decent pint of
Harvey's and an interesting menu, including all-day breakfasts. Operated
by arguably the best large national pubco in the country, Orchid.
Cricketers, Black Lion Street
establishment thatís buzzing at weekends, although the posh upstairs
bar is quieter. Flagship of legendary operator Dave Day.
Arthur, Dean Street
bright and cheery bolt-hole just off the main shopping centre has been
taken over on a free-of-tie lease by the guv'nor of the Windmill at the
top of the road. Three cask beers on the pumps, plus some fairly unusual
bottled imports. No food.
Craft Beer Co, Upper North Street
team from the Cask have decamped to the former Florist where you can
still find the amazing range of cask and craft keg beers but in the
comfortable surroundings of a proper local. Top class bar snacks include
pork pies, scotch eggs and Sussex cheeses.
Prince of Wales, Churchill Square
Tiny pub serving an excellent pint of Sheps.
Pull & Pump, Clarence Square
Handy for the shops. A Pleisure pub specialising in
Lion & Lobster, Sillwood Street
Gary Whelan out of Ballykissangel took over here it's developed into one
of the best pubs in Brighton, as you can tell by the crush at the bar.
Find yourself a nook or cranny in the maze of rooms, which include a
split-level roof terrace, and enjoy local ales, excellent food and Sky
Sports - even outdoors
Robin Hood, Norfolk Place
Owned by Martin Webb out of TV reality show Risking
it All this is a Peopleís Pub which means all profits go to charity.
So you canít ask for a top-up. Itís a good pub, though, with a nice
range of pizzas. Recently refurbished with a warmer feel.
Iron Duke, Waterloo Road
Friendly, close to sea, pool, rooms to let.
Temple Bar, Western Road . Web
Local ales served from an island bar, plus Thai food and a rather
pleasant upstairs bar cum function room. Run by Brighton pubco Indigo.
The Windmill, Upper North Street
Bustling pub, good place to eat, serving into the
North Laine, Gloucester Place
in the cavernous former Gloucester nightclub, this one has really adds
something to the Brighton pub scene. There's a shiny microbrewery behind
the bar producing a range of beers (so far just a smoky porter, but more
promised) plus good food, loads of big tables to sit at and the kind of
harsh acoustics the young folk don't seem to mind.
The North Laine
Brewery Tap, North Road
Featuring Brighton's only beer wall - the
taps are behind the bar rather than on it - the Brewery Tap could be
intimidating for the novice. And there's no cask ale. But a dozen or so
interesting brews from around the world are usually available on
draught, and most at a bargain £4 a pint, making it worth a visit.
Pond, Gloucester Road
simple freehouse just off the road leading down from the station to the
sea. Dark Star brews usually on tap and in good nick. Thai restaurant
upstairs. Thai snacks served in the bar.
Prince George, Trafalgar Street . Web
Brighton's famous all-vegetarian pub has been pulled out of decline by
Indigo and now serves local beers alongside an imaginative meat-free
Lord Nelson, Trafalgar Street
The best pub in Brighton? Harveys ales, choice of
ciders, great food, Sky Sports, occasional live music, Mark Williams out
of the Fast Show (when resting).
Great Eastern, Trafalgar Street
Part of the local Pleisure chain. Reliable, always
busy, interesting beers, good service, live music and comedy.
Basketmakers, Gloucester Road
One of Brightonís most popular pubs. Fullerís
(ex Gales) tenancy. Good food, relaxed atmosphere.
Waggon & Horses, Church Street
Well run freehouse thatís taken full advantage of
pedestrianisation. Interesting whisky list.
Wagon and Horses
The Foundry, Foundry Road
Nice. Nice and comfortable. Cheap pizzas.
Heart in Hand, North Road
Brilliant old fashioned jukebox that pulls in the
Mods on their Brighton jaunts.
Heart and Hand
Seven Dials/Preston Circus
Cow, Dyke Road
The Indigo boys have converted the old Tin Drum into a not-too-crafty
craft beer house with an American saloon kind of feel to it. Without the
fighting. Superior pub grub and bar snacks provide the solids.
Companions, Dyke Road . Web
A revelation. Local operator Indigo has transformed a large, dodgy
boozer into a splendid, if slightly pricey, place to eat and drink.
The Mitre, Baker Street
Old boys pub. Occasional old girl sighted. Full
Harveys range and arguably the best beer pub in Brighton, once scoring
an 11 out of ten. Serves hospital lunches (ie from 11.30am).
Pumps at the Mitre.
The Prestonville, Hamilton Road
Solid old ex-Gales house with decent food lunch and
Open House, Springfield Road
Inn Brighton headquarters next door to London Road
station. Interesting spaces, expansive garden and very nice food.
The Signalman, Ditchling Rise
Formerly the Railway Tavern this is now The Signalman, and part of the
Inn Brighton chain. Fine range of local ales and ciders, quality food,
Sky sports and a sheltered garden. Classy.
Southover, Southover Street
The Pub With No Name, as it used to be called, now has a name and a
much-needed refurb creating an island (or rather peninsula, since
it's attached to a wall) bar that makes a world of difference to the
atmosphere. It now also has customers and, as well as Sussex ales, craft
keg beers (served in two-thirds of a pint glasses) boasting that it's
the first pub in Brighton to have Brewdog on tap. Thai food available.
Bugle Inn, St Martins Sreet
backstreet Irish boozer serving Harvey's Best, Dark Star Hophead and
Guinness from a traditional font. Live music at weekends. Football (and
food) -free zone. Run by the bloke in the beard at the end of the bar.
Don't think he isn't working, though.
Dover Castle, Southover
Sheps tenancy lost some momentum following the departure of Meusli
Mountain Simon, but the new people run a solid operation and have
retained most positive features, including the relaxed atmosphere.
There's less flair to the food but the Sunday roast is certainly quite
Hanover, Queens Park Road
from the outside, but inside they serve rather fine Italian-style pizzas
that you can wash down with a Sussex-brewed ale at very reasonable
prices. Warning: attracts families.
Druids Arms, Ditchling Road
Grungy freehouse that somehow manages to serve one
of the best pints of Harveys, and occasionally guest ales from Dark Star,
in Brighton. Friendly service, Thai menu, live music, late
Geese Have Gone Over the Water, Southover Street. Web
community local with two screens for sport. Expect only one or two cask
beers - but invariably in good shape - plus above-average food.
Constant Service, Islingword Street
Light and airy Harveys house. Sky sports.
Reservoir, Howard Road . Web
Hiding down a side street, the Reservoir is a bit of an odd one,
featuring a Thai kitchen on a sort of stage at the back. It's a very
popular Thai kitchen, though, and there's also a surprise downstairs bar
and garden. Local ales and exotic lagers served.
Castle, Queens Park Road
New tenants were installed at this Hall & Woodhouse pub in 2010. The
tropical fish out, interesting Sunday roasts are in, along with great
value steak and chips on a Monday night.
The Hartington, Whippingham Road
Punch tenancy and one of the best run pubs in
Brighton. Always plenty going on. Good food lunch and evening, plus pool
and a sheltered garden.
Round Georges, Sutherland Road
Pleasant pub with cheerful, helpful staff and a
fine Sunday lunch Ė featuring real mint sauce! One of the few pubs
round here to serve lunches midweek, too, and it's great food at
reasonable prices. Plus satellite footy.
Black Dove, St James's Street website
The draught range is, frankly,
disappointing, but the bottled list is good and reasonably priced. Most
importantly you can drink amid a surreal Victorian-Americana decor in
the kind of fizzing atmosphere you get from a team of enthusiastic
cocktail bartenders. Oh, and don't forget to check out the kotch
Royal Oak, St James Street
former sports pub is now in the tender care of Blue, who runs both the
Basketmakers in the North Laine and the Lewes Arms in Lewes. The Oak has
been refurbed on a musical theme and has eight handpumps on the bar,
featuring some real classics. The food is predictably good and there's
an open fire in the rear bar.
St James Tavern, St James Street
A Pleisure pub specialising in the unusual
combination of rum and Thai food. Donít sit in the bay window at the
back because thatís where Viv sits.
Hand in Hand, Upper St James Street
pub with a big character, and only one of two brewpubs in the city.
Virtuoso brewer Gary Sillence of Brighton Bier has taken charge of the
mashtun and is producing a couple of interesting ales that sit alongside
a changing selection from other brewers.
Hand in Hand
Sidewinder, Upper St James Street
A young personís place but thereís usually a
handpump working and thereís a lively evening atmosphere and two big
The Rock, Rock Street
Quirky joint. Check out the strange little bar
round the back. Pool room, garden.
Ancient Mariner, Rutland Road. Website
Becalmed in the backstreets of Aldrington, west of Hove? In need of a
pint? Here's your man. A bright and breezy local from InnBrighton
featuring Sussex ales and all-day food.
Sussex Cricketer, Eaton Road
Part of M&Bís Ember Inns chain so the dťcor
is a bit Ikea but the ale is cheap and good and varied. Hove cricket
ground is out the back and itís a handy place to nip into during
lunch. Large sunny garden.
Corner, Montgomery Street
Formerly the Eclipse, this back street local is run by
Graham from the Lord Nelson and offers the full range of Harvey's beers.
The Neptune, Kingsway
Best known for the Friday night live blues, and the
beerís good too. Can be a bit of squeeze getting to the bar though.
Stanley Arms, Wolseley Road
Ale house famous for its beer festivals.
Coach House, Rottingdean
Nice spot on a sunny day, with a view of the
harbour from the upstairs balcony.
The Juggs, Kingston by Lewes
Extensive gardens picturesque setting at the foot
of the Downs makes this Sheps managed house a summer destination.
Griffin Inn, Fletching
Top food freehouse (nearly a restaurant but not
quite) with a rambling garden sometimes featuring a jazz band.
Tiger Inn, East Dene
Beachy Head Brewery now operates this village inn,
in a great spot for a trip out.
Pelham Arms, High Street
Spacious Hall & Woodhouse hostelry with a nice
Brewers Arms, High Street
Freehouse right next door to Tom Paineís house.
Expect the old boy was always in and out of here.
Lewes Arms, Mount Place
One of the worldís great pubs. Since the Battle
of Lewes Arms when regulars boycotted it because Greene King had taken
out the Harveys, Fullerís has taken it over, Harveys is back on and
the bloke whoís got the Basketmakers in Brighton is tenant. Donít
forget the upstairs room.
John Harvey Tavern, Cliffe High Street
The Harveyís brewery tap does good, interesting
food, as well as the full Harveys range shipped in from just across the
Gardenerís Arms, Cliffe High Street
Freehouse with a variety of well-kept cask beers
always on offer. The place to get the local goss.
The Snowdrop, South Street
after the 1836 Lewes Avalanche, the Snowdrop is a gem of a freehouse in
the town's Cliffe district prettily decked out barge-style with great
food, a good selection of cask and bottled beers and regular live jazz
and folk. Nice garden in the lee of the inland cliff from whence the
Music in the Snowdrop
Buckingham Arms, Shoreham
Just opposite the station beside the level
crossing, a highly convenient spot for a good pub serving a range of
Duke of Wellington, Brighton Road, Shoreham
Dark Star tied house with bar billiards and a
Shepherd & Dog, Fulking
Ancient pub at the foot of the Downs with a pretty
beer garden and lots of old beams.
Maypole Inn, Yapton
Friendly village pub with a good range of
Angelsey Arms, Halnaker
While itís the restaurant quality food that keeps
this pubís tills full its appeal for the pub-goer is the warm buzz and
well-kept ales in the public bar. The large garden has a country house
feel to it.
Gribble Inn, Oving
Brewpub that gave birth to Hall & Woodhouseís
Fox Goes Free, Charlton
Classic country pub with a big sunny garden. When
the sunís out, obviously.
The Fountain, Southgate
Reliable watering hole just up from the station.
Hall & Woodhouse ales. Live music.
Bull Inn, Market Road
Evening Standard journo and butcher Bill 'Mister Sausage' O'Hagan has
taken over the Bull and installed a constantly-rotating half-dozen
locally-brewed cask beers - as well as an all-day sausage menu featuring
a range of flavours. There's also a sausage counter where you can buy
them for home consumption. Pool room out back.
Eastgate, the Hornet
Friendly local just outside the town centre.
Park Tavern, Priory Road
Former Gales house, Now Fullerís.