There is nothing better than a nice quiet country pub – but with pubs closing on a regular basis it is getting harder and harder to find one.
Whether you want to curl up in front of the fire on a cold winters night, or sit out in the sun on a lovely summers evening – British country pubs are something that need to be treasured.
There has been a dramatic rise in the number of micro brewery’s starting up in the UK and we think this has really helped breath new life into traditional country pubs. It seems as though every tourist type destination has it’s own brewery, with each beer and ale having their own unique taste – beer lovers have never had it better!
A lot of these craft beers have gone main stream too – with many being stocked by the major supermarkets. But the pub is the best place to try them – as the ambience and aroma of the pub adds to the whole tasting experience.
Of course not everyone is a beer and real ale fan – and thankfully the drinks and pub industry has realized this. As well as a new found love for all things Gin – new local Gin producers are creating new brands and tasting menus for people to try out. Local wines are also making huge strides forward, especially down here in Cornwall and other areas of the South West. British wine has been a joke amongst the wine snobs – but with a slew of awards behind them, even when up against the French wines – British wines are starting to be taken seriously.
Good pub food
Most country pubs serve food – although the hours they serve will vary a lot. Usually they will have a 2 hour slot for lunch, and server dinner – may be until 9. British food has come a long way since the bland decades of the 70’s, 80’s and 90’s.
Be especially excited if the pub only has a chalk board menu. This means they will likely be using locally and seasonal main ingredients only. But at the same time – if the menu is printed, I’m sure the food will be great too.
There are obvious local specialities – but always keep an eye out for:
Fish n Chips
Always make sure to ask if the fish is locally caught if you are at a pub near a fishing harbour. It is always worth asking what type of fish you are going to get too.
Steak and Kidney Pie
I’m not a fan of eating kidneys myself, but I know it is a very traditional pie. Many of my family members really enjoy it. An awesome Roast Chicken pie will always be one of my favourite choices.
Also look for local pie (or pasty) varieties such as Melton Mowbery, or a Cornish Pasty.
A lot of people would say you should only eat a curry from an Indian Takeaway, but you must remember that a number of curry favourites such as Chicken Korma was actually invented in Britian.
You can get a really good curry in a British pub so do not be afraid to try it. You’ll often get a few tasty sides included such as poppadums and nan-bread.
Gammon and Chips
Always got to be finished off with a bit of pineapple and/or a fried egg. Always go for both if you are given the choice!
Roast or Carvery
The Sunday Roast is a Great British tradition, and while there is nothing like a home cooked roast – a roast or carvery from a pub, polished off with a nice pint – is a good reward from a week of hard work, or a good setup for the coming week.
Carvery’s are particulary great as you have a bit more flexibility of the veg and potatoes you have so you can make sure you get a bit more of what you like.
Visiting a pub in the summer was always a treat even when I was a child as the beer gardens often have play and climbing equipment.
While the adults are enjoying a drink in the sun, the kids can be burning off some energy playing. It’s a great chance for children to learn to make friends and play nicely with kids they have just met – as the people who are in the pub garden are often different each time you go.
Preston Gate Inn – Poughill, Bude
The Preston Gate Inn is easily my favourite pub in Bude. Although it doesn’t have a beer garden, it ticks nearly every other box we have mentioned.
Local ales – tick
Chalk board menu – tick
Sunday roasts – tick
Country pub feel and ambiance – tick
The pub isn’t massive – so it is impressive they are able to host live music, and if you are looking to eat some of the lovely food you should pre-book especially when in holiday season.
They have a good mixture of local ales, and some nationally known beers and larger’s.
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