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The ideal pub is the Holy Grail. Personal taste runs to the old, rural and rather shabby.

The ultimate Old Inn movie, by the way, is the 1944 supernatural classic 'The Halfway House' recently released on DVD.

The Inn of our dreams.

Interestingly, I have had over the years a recurring dream of an ideal pub that has actually decayed over the years that I have been dreaming about it.

When we have attained the New Jerusalem that all good men ultimately strive for, I am sure it will be restored to its former glory.

Username: greidbrown

Age: 57

Sex: male

Latest comments by greidbrown

The Hopbine, Matfield

Popped in here for the first time ever yesterday for lunchtime pint and it is silly we have never been here before – everything you want from a pub, including friendly and welcoming locals and very gracious landlord and landlady. And then there are beams, horse brasses, dark wood, dark red fittings, an area for darts with a piano, good Badger ale and seasonal special (Fursty Ferret Aug-Oct.). And the location is an idyllic lane with lovely cottages, so the locals are very lucky people.

Odd thing, though, I had a premonition that we would meet a cat there, and made sure I spoke it out loud this time, and there she was (almost sure it was a ‘she’) as we were coming out, relaxing in the idyllic cottage garden of the adjoining property, looking at us very knowingly – a lovely black and white cat who looked like the grandmother of the little one we have at home (also a pub cat, attained as a kitten from the Rising Sun, Cotmans Ash Lane.)

So I take that as a good omen.

And must pop in again at the Rising Sun soon . .

31 Aug 2011 11:26

The Rising Sun, Kemsing

Reading these reviews has left me longing to visit again. Much easier when I lived within walking distance.

Talking of cats here, as someone was, we got our latest cat here, she is a real treasure!

Just lovely and real and old and rural. I have made great friends with the parrot too. He loves a chat – if you say hallo to him, he can say hello back in both a male and a female cockney voice.

I remember one particular magical night here with a big storm going on outside.

This place has SOUL and lots of it.

Very generous and reasonable with the wine too – I always used to drink the Real Ale, but I like the white wine here.

Nope – come here for the poetry. This is precisely the sort of almost unfindable place that provides one with resonant memories and feeds the soul.

7 Aug 2011 16:39

The Golding Hop, Plaxtol

I have been coming here on and off since the early nineties.

It hasn't changed in all that time - first good reason to come here.

Others: idyllic rural location, Real Ale from the wood and a killer House Rough cider (though I now always have the Sparkling Dry when I come here, it really goes well with the high carb victuals - however, the next House Rough session must be planned ahead before long)

The food is cheap and chips with everything and is in fact spectacularly good – the chickens are right next door and the eggs are incomparable.

Sonia has the magical touch – not only are the flowering baskets the most verdant and abundant I have ever seen, earlier this Summer the bank opposite was a riot of wild-flower beauty as if there is a conspiracy to make this place beautiful and timeless. Because this is how I think of the place.

Other signs – one Halloween there was a dazzling array of skillfully carved pumpkins lined up on the bank, a true artist at work. At Christmas it is a grotto to behold. There is this touch about everything.

Eddie is Eddie – anyone who has a problem should Man up and run their own operation. I have seen a few altercations, not many over the years, but it has always been with people with a sense of entitlement who would be better of going to a chain (Hey! Just my opinion . . )

This is actually one of the very few, perhaps the only, rural pubs around here where there are no foul mouthed BBCs as I call them (the BB stands for bar-blocking, the ‘c’ for something else positively anglo-saxon) Because the landlord won’t stand for foul language. Surprising how many do. I would rather have a stern landlord than have to elbow my way to the bar via BBCs.

So Eddie and Sonia set the whole tone of the place, one irascible at times, the other Mother Earth, and this is how it should be in the right order of things. This is a real timeless old beautiful pub and everyone should go there – so there!

The only places comparable in the area in my memory I would say was the Crown in Shoreham when the legendary Phil was behind the bar (the man was a born barman from the Planet Barman), and the pre-extension Padwell Arms when it was the simplest pub imaginable. And of course the ever excellent ‘Halfway House’ in Brenchley. Doesn’t quite have the location though.

7 Aug 2011 15:38

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greidbrown has been registered on this site since 7th August 2011