We aren’t a ‘gastro-pub’. We don’t have a dining area, and we don’t have waiter-service. But we do take our food very seriously. We use the best ingredients we can get, cook it with a bit of care and attention, and serve it simply. We reckon it’s what you’d be eating if you were a 1950s housewife.
We run a Pie & Tipple for a Tenner menu on Monday and Thursday evenings, a brunch menu for the jazz on Saturday afternoons, and a traditional Sunday Lunch. Wednesday is Chef’s day off, so we have a short menu at lunchtime and the kitchen is closed in the evening. The rest of the time the menu gradually changes as we cook new things, but we always have toad-in-the-hole with sausages from the butcher next door or home-made veggie sausages, there’s always Sussex steak, a pie option, local fish, a salad and a veggie/vegan option or two, and a number of gluten-free items.
Because we cook everything ourselves, we may run out of stuff, but we’ll always do our best to come up with an alternative. Similarly, if you have allergies, we’ll do our best to work round it. If you want to tweak items, we’ll try – though if the kitchen is under-pressure we might not manage. If you want to order off-menu, because we’re only a small kitchen we might not succeed, but always let us know and we’ll at least think about it!
These sample menus give an idea of what we do (downloads as PDF)
Sourcing and suppliers
We try to take a pragmatic approach to sourcing, balancing quality, social responsibility, and cost.
Our meat is supplied by Farmer Henk at Redlands Farm. Most of it is from animals raised by him, but some (particularly if chef fancies experimenting a bit) comes from his own suppliers. It’s all traditionally raised and hung. He also supplies our Game in the winter, which is mostly from the Firle Estate, or shot by Henk. We tend to buy cheaper cuts from the best animals, and put a little more time and effort into cooking them to get best value. Our sausages are made by Glen the butcher next door.
Our fish comes from Newhaven, and is all locally landed, mostly from small day-boats – apart from mussels, which are usually Scottish (but still delicious). In the summer we sell lobster caught from Rottingdean’s own lobster-bed, and crab, which is caught from between Shoreham and Newhaven.
Most of our veg is supplied by proper local character, Carlie. He gets it as locally as possible. What this means is a bit complicated. Root vegetables come from furthest afield – generally Lincolnshire, apart from a few weeks a year when we’re out of season, when they’re foreign. But we try to keep this to a minimum! Our greens tend to be Sussex, but are always British. Our ‘big ticket’ items like squash and kale generally come from local organic farms, often from one set up to train the disabled. He also supplies our eggs which are local, free-range, organic and biodynamic. The rest of our produce comes from Devesons the grocers next door.
Our cheese is almost all Sussex, and mostly made by Alsop & Walker, apart from the goats' cheese in the main-courses which is French (we can’t find a similar product locally) and the cheese in the Welsh Rarebit which is generic Cheddar (using anything else would be a criminal waste – we put local ale in it, so it’s quite delicious enough). Butter used in cooking is English, and butter served on the plate is Sussex.
We buy our bread at the village bakers. It's baked in Brighton.