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Smugglers, Milford on Sea

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user reviews of the Smugglers, Milford on Sea

please note - reviews on this site are purely the opinion of site visitors, so don't take them too seriously.

Very friendly local pub where nothing is too much trouble. We sampled their very good evening menu and ales on two nights recently and could not really fault the place. 4 beers on offer and my Abbot was in fine form.

Handy large car park and nice garden. Dog friendly, but don't hold that against them too much as it's a roomy place and you could probably find a table away from the whiny critters..

Finished our trip with Sunday lunch there which again was very good value and delicious, though we were just a bit surprised to be charged an extra 75p each for an extra Yorkshire pud.

Thoroughly recommend.
keystone - 11 Nov 2013 09:15
Delivering my rating after previous comment. It's a very solid and worthy 8/10. The food is the real winner here, last time tried some Belly Pork stuffed with apple, apricot and sage stuffing which was lovely as is the Taglietelle dish. Ales, though nothing out of the ordinary, are well kept and the staff very friendly and obliging. Great stuff!
Oakman100 - 8 Aug 2013 16:33
Been to Milford on many occassions and not ventured a foot in here...until March 2013.

Very popular and deservedly so looking at the food. Friendly landlady and locals who we got chatting to. Admittedly there might not be the greatest beer range around, though one pump was out, but the Ringwood Best was in good nick.

Can't give a rating yet as this was a quick stop on a crawl but the pub has a good atmosphere to it and will pop in again soon.
Oakman100 - 4 Mar 2013 17:05
Visited this pub on Maundy Thursday 2012. Staff all very helpful and pleasant. Good selection of beers at reasonable prices. Food a cut above the average for a pub. Five of us each had a splendid meal. Tried to get back in the next day but it was packed out.
THATOLDMAN - 7 Apr 2012 20:15
Normally I will read reports on my pub and take in valid points, however I feel the last comment from Retiredlady was unjust being a so called "regular" she would have known that the day in question was my day off and we had a few issues regarding a family members health which would stress anyone. I assume however that as per her comment "Only use this pub when other 2 Pubs in the village aren't open" means that when all the other pubs in the area are closed between 3 and 6 she'll be in as usual though.........
innkeepersc - 23 Mar 2012 22:33
This pub could be so good but the staff & management haven't got a clue . The manager gets visibly harassed when serving customers & will do all he can to avoid serving .It is quite usual to have to wait to be served & to find staff leaving the bar unattended to clear or wait on tables . It might be nice if staff could actually recognise people who frequent their establishment on a regular basis .Only use this pub when other 2 pubs in the village aren't open !
retiredlady - 22 Dec 2011 14:12
Visited this pub Yesterday, I had been to it's sister pubs "Hare & Hounds" in Sway (Excellent - The Best one). & "The White Hart" in Lymington and wanted to compare them. Had a nice pint of Ringwood Best Bitter, with Greene King IPA , Greene King Abbott Ale & Sharps Doombar also on. A bit on the dark side as it had a dark wood ceiling and low beams. Very clean toilets, large Car Park, outside seating and Child friendly. The ONLY thing letting this pub down was the service, in that there were two bar staff who both seemed to dissapear at the same time or kept chatting to people at the Bar instaed of serving. When they were behind the ramp all was well. Worth a visit. FANTASTIC Indian opposite which is also worth a visit.
Bitter_Man - 24 May 2011 18:19
Was recommended this pub by the hotel we stayed in.
Not much choice in terms of beer and the usual Becks Vier on tap.
Food was not much better than what you get from a roadside service station.
Staff were very friendly and the children's play area was useful - shame the lovely garden and stream only has a view of the carpark!
Valky - 2 May 2011 10:29
Couldn't fault this joint, apart from being popular hense it's location.Usually you can tell if you'll get a table or not by judging the amount of cars in their carpark - food good so happy to write you my opinion.
blond_40 - 12 Mar 2011 17:04
After a long day on the Isle of Wight we stupidly chose the Smugglers Inn for our evening meal - BIG mistake - lady told us to wait 5 minutes for table to be cleared and lovely waiter was attentive but seemed harrassed - took order after acceptable length of time but then after 1 and a half hours and still no food with my elderly parents and young daughter getting desperate for food we were told that the food order had not been passed to the kitchen and therefore our food wasn't anywhere near this time we had watched others around us being served starters, mains, desserts, coffees and even after dinner nightcaps "on the house" - there was NO effort made by staff at all including from the lady who appeared to be in charge to rectify their cock-up so we left. Fish & Chips from local chippy were FANTASTIC.
suzydee - 14 Aug 2010 23:08
My husband and I stumbled on this pub while touring the New forest, I am now wishing we didn't . We sat down in the restaurant, when my husband asked if he could order he was chastised like a naughty child, that we should not have sat in the restaurant without asking first, there was no notice saying we couldn't sit in the restaurant. another couple did the same, and was also chastised, however, I assume it was the manager her name was Fiona from Dundee apologised to the other couple however, when we ordered our food, it was literally thrown at us, and when 'Fiona' cleared out plates, she did not ask if we enjoyed the meal or would like desert. The service was disgusting and rude. The food itself was good, however I would not recommend this pub unless you like rude service
happybetty - 2 Aug 2010 21:41
When this pub is quiet it's good and worth a visit but as soon as they get a bit busy, it turns to jelly. They've never had great staff but it would be nice to go to the bar and order a drink without having to be asked twice what you asked for, how hard is it to remember "a pint please?!" The bar staff are very slow, sometimes you feel like you just want to jump over the bar and get the drink yourself! When busy in the summer, you always get lots of tables left covered in glasses and plates after people have left, quite often you have to clear a table outside if you wish to sit on it. A shame because Brendan is the best thing that had happened to this pub but it's still not quite there in terms of being a great pub. Toilets are never particularly clean, they should be checked every half an hour really. Have to say the food is very good though.
milfordgirl - 21 Apr 2010 17:43
Having just returned from a four night break staying in Milford on Sea we luckily stumbled across this gem of a pub on our first night and returned there for the company and great food for all evenings of our stay.

The food was amazing. Nothing was too much trouble and we even had pancakes cooked for us on Shrove Tuesday. The menu was superb and my wife and I worked our way through many combinations of starters and main courses though apart from the pancakes we were too stuffed to face any of the tantalising sweets on offer.

Guy and Suzy were the perfect hosts. Friendly and welcoming but not overboard and they serve an excellent pint of Landlord. Chatted to many of the locals and felt very much at home in this wonderful pub.

Just wish it was my local though my waistline would definitely suffer. Thanks Guy and Suzy for making our stay in the forest so memorable.
FREDDIETHEHUG - 18 Feb 2010 09:10
Very busy pub aimed at the tourist trade but none the worse for it .The service was quick and efficient rather than olde worlde welcome but they were very busy. The food was pricey, as to be expected, but far better than chain pub offerings. Four real ales on offer. The Doombar was OK without being great.
Wheel chair access is not good and the parking crowded but its worth a visit if on holiday.
bee578 - 29 Jun 2009 11:20
This is the sister pub to the Hare & Hounds at Sway, a tough act to follow.
Again we picked up on the Smugglers via the BITE reviews. There was not a single comlaint about the food from our party, the whitebait was highly rated as the 2nd best they had ever had. The best being served at the Hare & Hounds. A big thumbs up for the jacket potatoes & the lasagne. Two of us had the steak & ale pie, very good but not the best I have ever eaten. The vegetables were fresh & more were offered if we wanted them. The desserts were highly rated, top marks for the sticky toffee pudding & the crumble. You can't go wrong with the beer, an excellent range of well kept real ales. We set off on the second half of our walk quite replete. You will not be disappointed by the Smuggler, good food reasonably priced. I think it's rating of 7.5 is about right.
John.T - 12 Apr 2009 19:45
The way a pub should be, well kept ale, friendly staff and great food. Can't understand the previous comment about drab decor as can be seen by the pictures of the interior. Personally I like old beams etc so each to their own.
aleandfarewell - 9 Mar 2009 00:38
After reading the reviews we thought we would try out The Smugglers during our time visiting relatives in the area, and can honestly say we were not disappointed, excellent food and such a homely and friendly atmosphere. We were made welcome as soon as we entered, we have been back everyday since. We wish Suzy and Guy the best of luck for what promises to be a very busy summer, if the period we visited was anything to go by. We will be sure to visit again soon. John and Symone
manabbotttown - 18 Feb 2009 02:19
We recently spent a weekend at Milford on Sea (30/31 January 2009) and were lucky enough to find the Smugglers Inn. We hadn't been in this freindly pub more than ten minutes when the landlord and landlady (Suzy and Guy) made us feel so welcome. You could see that they took pride in their pub which was absolutely spotless! My Husband really enjoyed their real ale, one of the best pint's he'd had. We decided to return later that evening and dine in the restaurant which again was a loveley surprise. The food was very well presented and most enjoyable and very reasonable. We later learnt that this couple had been managing the Smugglers Inn for a short while, since October 2008. We also learnt that the bar maid was a family member. I didn't catch her name but again was a joy to be around. To complete our experience the bar maid kindly offered to take us back to our hotel a short distance away. How's that for service! I can honestly say both myself and my Husband have been in lot's of pubs and our experience at the Smugglers Inn was among the top ranking pubs in our eyes. If you are fortunate enough to either live or are visiting that part of the country (Milford on Sea) I would recommend that you check out this place. I would also like to wish Suzy and Guy the very best of luck for the future. I'm quite confident that you are going to have a very busy pub. Tez
TezWebster - 3 Feb 2009 15:00
Popped in with my mother on friday after walking the dogs,and had a bite to eat.very dog and child friendly.the barstaff even gave us a few of the leftovers from another table in a bowl for the dogs rather than see it wasted (a good job as there was none left by us LOL).will be sure to visit after our next walk.10/10
bluebols - 25 Jan 2009 22:59
I recently spent a few days in Milford visiting friends and we decided to visit the Smugglers as it is conveniently located in the centre of the village. Having visited a few years ago, I didnt expect much, however I was very pleasantly surprised to find it had been restored to a good old fashioned pub rather than the previous 'bistro' style. We chatted to the new Managers Guy and Suzy who were very welcoming and discovered that Suzy had until recently been Head chef at another pub the owners have nearby in Sway called the Hare and Hounds. This obviously attributed to the dramatic difference in the food, which after seeing a few of the dishes being sent out from the kitchen we decided to sample for ourselves. The Smuggled chicken is too die for!! a word of warning though if you are going to eat there, then don't have anything most of the day as the portions will easily tame the heartiest of appetites. Sadly as much as I wanted to try some of the delicious desserts I had to admit defeat. I will definately be visiting again, keep up the great work.
dipsomaniax - 22 Jan 2009 20:03
I have just spent a couple of days in Milford with my wife and our greyhound Sally and I am pleased to say that things have clearly improved since Buckyball's summer visit. There is new management in place and I can confirm there are no stcky tables and that the food and service are very good. We visited on 3 occasions and on each one we had a friendly welcome and enjoyed some very good Doom Bar bitter. Popular with families early evening but still with plenty of space to eat. I thoroughly recommed the pub and wish the new proprietors all the best fro the future.
addlened - 31 Oct 2008 17:07
popped in a while back with the family. From the outside it looks perfect - nice spot by the stream, grassy garden, nice little playground for the kids. It advertises itself (rather too prominently) as a 'traditional' pub. Unfortunately the inside has been made to look like a traditional American diner - utterly dreadful. When we visited (summer 2008) the food was ordinary, service was confused and tables were sticky.
Have been in since for a swift half while waiting for a takeaway and the staff were better and beer ok.
Basically a massive missed opportunity.
buckyball - 22 Oct 2008 19:23
A bit of a weird pub this one. Look up and it has all the markings of a nice good old fashioned boozer. Look down and the décor seems to have been taken from a trending London wine bar. The two do not mix. This and the fact that my pint was served to me in a plastic glass (due to some bizarre licensing law that weekend) put me off the place. According to some of the more discerning local drinkers, this is the pub to go to if you want to have a fight of a weekend. Didn’t try the food so can’t comment on that and the ale selection was limited.
LennyBanter - 13 Jul 2008 14:54
FANTASTIC - The old owners have gone out of business and the pub has been revived back to life. Gastro food, but restored the old beams back to the original and spent a lot of money making it very kiddy friendly, clean and tidy. Had a great time there as opened this weekend with great food and ales. Neil (I think) is the new manager and looked after us well with his new team of staff. Highly recommend for food and drink especially if with kids.
alisandro - 7 May 2008 12:22
Great pub, went there with the kids and were greeted with a very warm welcome, sunday carvery was fantastic, beer was great and well kept tried them all! Ringwood best, Shepherd Neame Spitfire, Timothy Taylors Landlord,Abbot Ale, Hidden Brewery Hidden Fantasy I was informed that the band nights are starting back up in October so i'll be back
davej - 3 Sep 2006 18:30
The pub changed hands a couple of years ago - the food is dire. The beer not much better. Pretentious interior. Another good pub ruined.
Grossy - 27 May 2006 02:25
Had my first under age pint here. every friday night some years ago was a local band, this place used to be heaving. every summer, tourist lunches boomed it into what we see now. bring back the music.
globalpishead - 20 May 2006 16:02
Excellent of pint of Shepherd Neame Spitfire was the best thing about this place. Unfortunately, with all the tables being set out for diners it feels more like a restaurant with a licence than a proper pub and even the two fruit machines and comfy sofas around one side do little to dispel this impression. Staff seemed friendly and efficent but the place was quiet for a Saturday lunchtime when I was in there.
johnkn7 - 13 Mar 2006 19:04

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