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Saturday, 25 April 2009

Visit to E. Sussex and W. Hants

A few words about my trip to Eastbourne, a small town on the East Sussex coast which hosted this year's CAMRA AGM. Loads of Harvey's beers, which aren't bad, but other choices were limited. We caught a taxi to the Old Town, and our driver was proudly telling us where to find all the good pubs there. First call was the Lamb, which dates from the 12th or 13th century. I enjoyed a pint of Harvey's Olympia here, a golden seasonal beer. We went on to the Star and found a cask of Old Hooky on the bar, which was very drinkable. Someone politely asked us if we'd mind if he played the piano and when we said no, played boogie-woogie style. Spontaneous live music - great. We finished at the Crown, which boasts the biggest beer garden in Eastbourne with fine views, and as the weather was wonderful we sat outside there. All these pubs were picturesque and if you're in Eastbourne, you must visit the old town.

I then went to stay with my sister in western Hampshire. Near where she lives, the best I can say is: nice-looking pubs with unremarkable beer. I did go for a wander around Winchester, and avoided the many Greene King pubs, as you can get their IPA and Abbot ales anywhere. I began at the Eclipse, which at about 500 years old is one of the oldest buildings in the town centre; it served a good pint of Ringwood Best Bitter, quite a common beer in the town. In the Old Vine, more a wine bar and restaurant, I had a Stonehenge golden ale, which I hadn't had before. After a couple of unexceptional pubs and pints, I found the beer festival in Wetherspoons had the most variety; I had two excellent draught continental beers, but can't recall what they were called. Well, it was later in the evening. I thought Winchester was worth exploring, and I know I've only scratched the surface.

4 comments:

  1. You guys are going to have to chuck Brown out and elect someone voted in by the people.

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  2. We never have a vote for the prime minister, even at a general election; we can only vote for the local candidate of our preferred party ~ and we flatter ourselves with the title "the mother of democracy". But irrespective of the voting system, I doubt the problems pubs are having would be any better under another PM, especially not while politicians can have cheap booze subsidised by us taxpayers (see posting 30.3.09).

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  3. I love Winchester but have never gone to a pub there. I have a friend who lives in town--maybe it's the tourist in me but I love the round table from the middle ages which looks more like a giant's dart board! Next time I visit her I'll note your post and check out these places!

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  4. The round table of our legendary King Arthur a giant's dart board? How dare you! But you're right, and I'll never see it the same way again. Good job it was only a mediaeval forgery.

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