Friday 31 January 2020

A Beautiful Lunch at the Vintage Inns Beachy Head Pub

Beachy Head Vintage Inn

Last week my husband and I had the pleasure of a weekday off together, so we decided to head to the Eastbourne area for a walk along the beautiful cliffs at Beachy Head and to enjoy lunch at the Beachy Head Vintage Inn pub. We’ve eaten there before so we were expecting it to be good and we certainly weren’t disappointed.

Check out the Vintage Inns App
I downloaded the app as I knew you could get some good deals via that. Straight away I saw there was a 33% off food voucher running for all of January, but noted this couldn’t be used on set menus. I booked a table via the app and this was easy and I received a confirmation quickly.

Arrival at the Beachy Head Vintage Inn
We know this area well, so it was easy for us to find the pub, and even for someone travelling there for the first time, if you follow the signs or your SatNav for Beachy Head you’ll arrive easily. Make sure you park in the pub car park behind it, so you don’t have to pay, as most local car parks up on the cliffs are local council pay and display ones.

The pub looked clean, well maintained and welcoming. When we went inside it became clear that it wasn’t the busiest day and we just grabbed a table where we fancied. There are good seating areas outside for warm weather use, at both the front and back of the building. The views from the back are breath-taking and stretch right across to the lighthouse, Birling Gap and Seven Sisters cliffs from inside the pub/ restaurant.

There was a weird and amazing sky/ cloud formation the day we were there (mackerel cloud formations I believe).

The inside of the pub is warm and nicely decorated. It is a big space that is cleverly broken up into smaller areas and each are inviting to sit in and enjoy your drink or food. There are lots of large windows so you can look out to the views and enjoy them.

We chose our table and sat down to look through the menu, it was good to see that there were weekly specials as well as the regular menu items. We decided to go for the weekday lunch set menu, which is £12.50 for two courses or £15.50 for three courses and although we couldn’t use the discount from the app with this menu, it worked out to be more favourable price wise anyway.
We ordered our food at 1.10pm and I opened up a tab (which I had to guarantee with my credit card) as I wasn’t sure if we would have a dessert or not, and I wanted to pay with a Vintage Inns gift voucher I’d bought for my husband for Christmas.

The Food and Drink
I ordered a diet Pepsi (£1.95 for a small glass) that I took back to the table with me and a cappuccino (£2.75) which was bought over to us promptly. Our starters didn’t arrive until about 1.45pm and this felt that quite a while to wait, but luckily we weren’t in a hurry and when the food came, it was excellent and we really enjoyed it.

I had a duo of pate - coarse pork & Madeira pâté and duck liver parfait, served with Bramley apple butter, blackcurrant curd, baby gherkins and rustic bread, which was super yummy and I really loved the combination of the smooth pate with the blackcurrant curd. My husband went for oven-baked button and Portobello mushrooms in a garlic & mature Cheddar sauce with rustic bread, which he also said were very good. Both were filling and we thought good value.

Once we had eaten our starters, our plates were cleared and the mains came out promptly, at about 2pm. For main course I opted for Chicken and mushroom pie in a chardonnay, woodland mushroom & leek sauce, topped with puff pastry, served with spring onion mash, roasted carrots and seasonal greens. It was a really good pie, with a lot of filling and a lovely crisp pie lid. I particularly enjoyed the roasted carrots, which were sweet and soft.

My husband fancied the Prime beef burger with mayo, burger relish and homemade onion rings, served with skin on fries, but they had run out of the regular prime burger, which is available on the set menu. Without me having to ask, the server spoke to the chef and offered an upgrade to the Wagu burger without any additional charge to us, and I was impressed with this.

We both very much enjoyed our main courses and considered stopping there as we were feeling quite full. But another look on the set menu and the realisation that a dessert would only cost us an extra £3 was enough to make us decide to go for another course. We both opted to have a mini dessert and hot drink. I went for the crumble of the day (which was apple and plum) with a cappuccino and my husband had a small apricot brulee with a latte.

All the food was of a good quality, came out at the right temperature and was really enjoyable. At a cost of £15.50 for three courses, which include a hot drink as we went for the mini dessert option, I think this is fabulous value.

The Service
You order at the till and we were served by Adam, he was efficient and friendly, and he certainly makes a great coffee! The staff that bought our food to the table and cleared the plates were nice enough too. You don't get that much staff interaction to be honest, but that's not a problem. They did everything they needed to and we could go to the bar and ask for help if we needed it. 

At the end of the meal I went up to pay and used my gift voucher. It's only upon looking at my receipt at home that I see I was charged £15.95 per person for the 3 course set menu but it say £15.50 on the printed menu and also on the website. Of course 45p isn't a massive problem, but it does show I should watch my charges/ receipts better when I am paying. 

We loved our meal at the Beachy Head Vintage Inn and we will definitely go there again. In fact I am planning a return visit when my parents come to stay in a couple of months. Don't forget to book a table if the weather is forecast to be nice and particularly if it is during the warmer months, as the pub can be heaving in the Summer holidays. 

Don't forget to check out the app before you go to see if you can secure a great deal and look at the set menus as they are super value for money and they do a lunch (Mon - Fri) and dinner (Mon - Thurs) one. There is also a weekend treat menu for Friday evenings and all day Saturday where you can have 2 or 3 courses and a bottle of wine to share.  

Whilst you are there make sure you leave some time to have a walk and enjoy the beautiful views. You have the lighthouses at Beachy Head, the National Trust beach at Birling Gap and the amazing Seven Sisters cliffs. They are all glorious and super interesting whatever the weather. Here are a few pictures from various times we have visited.

Can you see where the sea meets the sky? Beachy Head, taken January 2020

Taken at Birling Gap beach, September 2019
Birling Gap, July 2016
Seven Sisters Cliffs
Seven Sisters cliffs, taken April 2015
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Vintage Inns Beachy Head pin

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