The blog for the gang from Brighton Rock who have taken to wandering between pubs on and around the South Downs and the Weald most weekends.
The Dinkum (actually in Polegate, not Berwick!) was a miserable pub full of miserable locals and unfriendly bar staff - we had a quick drink there while waiting for Tim n Loz to turn up (they'd missed the earlier train) and the atmosphere was not at all welcoming. We were supposed to eat in the Hailsham pub but they'd just changed hands and hadn't set the kitchen up yet, so we subsisted on beer, crisps and a choccy bar from the local shop until the next pub, the Old Oak Inn. The food there was overpriced and pretty horrible - soup watery yet full of strange lumps, badly-microwaved jacket potato for £6, that sort of thing.The GPS system went a bit weird in the nature reserves; they've probably moved some paths around in there. And yes, some deer jumped out right in front of us and ran across the track; we also saw squirrels, long-tailed tits and heard a woodpecker.It was getting dark and drizzly by the time we got to Berwick so it was a relief to get to the Berwick Inn - the beer wasn't that great but sitting down was very welcome.
Also, crossing the A22 just outside Polegate was a bit hairy, we missed the underpass and had to walk up to the roundabout where the cars were going a bit slower, lest we go the way of the hedgehog...
Disappointing set of pubs on this trip, though the woodland was top Banana.I've never seen wild deer up that close when I haven't been in the car before. I first caught a glipse of something white flashing in the woods to our right, and thought it was possibly birds; I pointed it out to the others and then two deer jumped onto the tack in front of us. The Dinkum was remarkable only for its unusually high urinals; clearly they don't want dwarves going for a slash in here. The King's Head was pleasant enough and the Harveys was OK but there was no food. Then the Old Oak Inn, which looked great, but had miserable bar staff, average beer and crap overpriced food. £6 for a tiny bowl of supposed pea and ham soup, that seemed to consist of a tin of marrowfat peas blended with mint sauce, vinegar and breadcrumbs! It may've had ham in the saucepan, but somehow none of it made it into our bowls. They even managed to fuck up microwaving Ben's jacket-spud, making a good portion of it inedible; which is quite a feat for a place that's supposed to be a bit of a gastropub.It started to get a bit chilly, dark and damp as we walked around the reservoir, and we were glad to arrive at the Berwick Inn, where the food looked annoyingly tasty, cheap and hearty, but the beer (Directors IIRC) tasted like vinegar :(
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