Sussex restaurants and Sussex country pubs
Brighton, and the surrounding Sussex countryside offer endless restaurant and pub food options. For this list we have taken a look at the Sussex countryside and the Sussex seaside. There are Sussex restaurants and proper country pubs. The choice, as they say, is yours.
The Schooner, Southwick (NEW)
The Schooner is an independent gastropub nestled on the Sussex shoreline between Hove & Shoreham, offering locally sourced meats, fish & seafood. Situated in an 18th Century building with a warm welcome, real fires and stunning panoramic views overlooking lady bee marina & the harbour it’s a wonderful place to spend the evening or a Sunday lunch. Dog and child friendly and a perfect gem if you’re wanting to take in a little sea air.
Baloos Kitchen & Bar, Woodmancote
Located just 20 minutes from Brighton and located very close to Henfield, Chris and Amanda have been providing a very warm welcome at Baloos Bar & Kitchen since 2007. Great for Light Bites for a midweek work Lunch, favourites with friends, or a Sunday Roast with the family. Comes with a roaring fire for the winter and plenty of alfresco space for the summer – so you’ll be happy year round. Review.
Stanmer House, Stanmer Park
A beautiful 18th Century Grade 1 Listed Country house set in acres of stunning woodland and parkland in the heart of Sussex, nestled between the sea and the South Downs just 10 minutes from Brighton. Ideal for breakfast, tea and cakes, lunches, dinner, a place to enjoy a pint and a great option for the family. A great venue also for private dining, business functions and weddings. Comes with stunning gardens. Review.
Limes Restaurant, Lindfield (NEW)
Situated on the Linden tree lined high street and nestled amongst an eclectic mix of independent shops and stores, this restaurant is in the heart of the charming village of Lindfield which is 35 minutes north of Brighton. The restaurant is open for breakfast, lunch, afternoon tea and dinner from Tuesday to Saturday and, on Sundays, lunch and afternoon tea is served. Review
The Shepherd & Dog, Fulking
An idyllic country boozer with the character and charm from a bygone era. Whether you’re combing your visit with a picturesque walk from The Devils Dyke, you’re making a countryside getaway from Brighton or you’re attending one of their regular events, The Shepherd & Dog has a lot to offer considering its nestled in quite a sleepy village at the bottom of the foothills of the South Downs National Park. Review.
The Glass House Restaurant, Albourne
Want to try something completely different and sample a new casual dining restaurant located just over the South Downs from Brighton? Every Sunday enjoy their delicious Sunday menu alongside a fantastic range of starters, roasts, popular main courses and irresistible desserts. Just 10 minutes outside Brighton. Review. Part of the Wickwoods Spa and country club.
The Talbot, Cuckfield
The Talbot sits in the heart of Cuckfield Village and serves a wonderful range of lunch, bar and dinner menus as well as the traditional Sunday lunch. It has an extensive wine list, regional ales, and a relaxed atmosphere. The Talbot is child and dog friendly and hosts the Cuckfield Food Market. Great for pub and restaurant dining. Good for large parties. Serves good pub classics along with restaurant quality dishes. Review.
The Sportsman, Goddards Green
Formerly, two pubs, the Magpie and the Sportsman, the Grade II listed buildings were knocked through into one over recent years and this traditional ‘beer house’ has been part of the villages heritage for some years. Situated north of Hurstpierpoint at Goddards Green, the Sportsman public house has been serving great food and real ales for some time. A lovely spot for a country walk in the nearby surrounding area.
The Fountain Inn, Ashurst
The Fountain Inn in Ashurst is a traditional homely Sussex pub, full of charm and character and is a must visit destination with an idyllic Sussex countryside setting. Located just off the Steyning By-Pass (A283), off the old Horsham Road, the Fountain Inn is well worth a visit if you want to escape to the country. Review. This venue has had a whole host of famous and prestigious guests in the past.
The Oak Barn Restaurant (NEW)
An Original 250 year old barn, lovingly restored to a family run bar and restaurant and a destination venue which offers something quite unique. Situated in Mid Sussex you will find the Oak Barn just 15 mins outside Brighton, just of the A23 at Hickstead. All of their dishes are freshly prepared in their kitchens using the finest local produce and ingredients. A great Sussex venue for a casual evening dinner, a special occasion or a Sunday roast.
Pelham House is a beautiful 16th century town house hotel in the heart of Lewes and one of East Sussex’s hidden gems just 10 minutes from Brighton. Whether it’s lunch on the sunny terrace or dinner in one of their beautiful restaurant rooms, Pelham House is the perfect setting for that special lunch or dinner. A real retreat of a venue which is also suitable for larger parties and events. Offers a real wow factor. Review.
The Rainbow Inn, Cooksbridge
The Rainbow is a historic, homely country pub, just north of Lewes on the A275, at the intersection of Resting Oak Hill and Deadmantree Hill. The Rainbow brings you a rustic country inn along with a great selection of food and drink – with a warm welcome to match. Boasting sheltered outdoor spaces to the front of the property and glorious secluded gardens to the rear. Review.
The Plough, Rottingdean
The Plough serves homecooked food, Sunday roasts and serves food every night of the week. It is also available for private bookings (they have a first floor function room) and events and it is advisable to book in advance just in case it is a busy day (particularly Sundays). Offering a classic pub menu along with a innovative Gastro Menu this venue caters for everybody, from kids to couples, from walkers to your everyday regular. Review.
The Royal Oak, Poynings
The Royal Oak is a popular Sussex country pub nestled in the beautiful hamlet of Poynings, at the foot of the famous Devils Dyke within the South Downs National Park. Think wood-burning stoves, timber panelled bar, oak beams adorned with hop bines – with a great selection of Sunday roasts to choose from. Country pubs don’t get much better than this. Review.
The Duke of York, Sayers Common
The Duke is a great country pub to visit and only fifteen minutes or so outside of Brighton. Ideally located if you are planning a trip to the Sussex countryside and the South Downs, this venue is just around the corner from Hickstead Showground with lots of country walks in the area. Classic pub dishes, a cosy venue and a very warm welcome. A great venue if you want to go and explore Sussex. Review.
The Chambers Bistro, Shoreham By Sea
Chambers Bistro in Shoreham-By-Sea is an independent and modern style British bistro, serving all the popular classics in this elegant and centrally positioned venue. This well known destination restaurant boasts the splendour of a Grade II listed neo classical building with super swish and stylish interiors. The Sussex sister to the House restaurant in Brighton. Chambers Review.
Chaula’s Indian Restaurant, Lewes
Curry can be enjoyed on any day of the week. Try the food of India and not just Indian food here at Chaulas in Brighton or Lewes. With recipes that have been passed down from generation to generation, Chaula and her talented team have been catering in Sussex for close to 20 years. Rated as one of the best Indian restaurants in Sussex and it doesn’t get much better than this. Review.
Country Man, Shipley
Traditional, cosy pub in the tiny West Sussex village of Shipley, the Country Man Inn serves great quality meals in stunning surroundings. With 3,500 acres of farmland as a backdrop, you can’t get more peaceful. There’s a fantastic beer garden great for families. Local beers on tap including organic Horsham ales. Not one for cutting corners the team use the freshest, most seasonal ingredients availables. Pub classics, fresh fish and the more adventurous.
The Jolly Sportsman, East Chiltington
Situated on a quiet, no-through lane in rural East Chiltington, Sussex by the South Downs, 20 mins from Brighton. Since 1998 it has been run by Bruce Wass who was the Chef / Proprietor of the highly acclaimed Thackerays House restaurant in Tunbridge Wells. They aim to serve good reliably sourced food in a relaxed setting where you can enjoy a bar snack and a pint of local ale or a three course meal with fine wine from our their extensive list. Review.
Royal Oak, Wineham
A black and white timbered 14th century building with brick floors, low beams and an original old fireplace. Situated in the lovely quaint little hamlet of Wineham surrounded by farms and countryside, it’s a lovely little pub to visit with outstanding food on offer. Quality and source is extremely important to the team at the Royal Oak sourcing most of their excellent produce from neighbouring farms and businesses.
Half Moon, Warninglid
In the heart of the pretty village of Warninglid, the Half Moon is a traditional, cosy pub with a lot of character and warmth. Dating back to early 19th century, it’s still got a historic charm about it with a few modern nuances. The glass covered well in the restaurant for example is an unusual but interesting feature. Offering hearty, home-cooked food made with local ingredients, they do not do things by halves.
Wheatsheaf, Plummers Plain
This is one of those pubs where there are so many interesting things to look at, you never want to go home. Quirky and full of character, this beautiful country pub in Plummers Plain, near Handcross is a great place to come with family or friends for good food, and good fun. A fantastic play garden for kids, they will literally be entertained all day long. Traditional pub classics.
Sylvan Oak, Findon
Located on the foot of the South Downs in a small village called Findon, this Sussex restaurant is open for weekday lunches, evenings and weekends and offers quite a varied menu, all delightfully prepared. The owner Sinan is somewhat of an exhibitionist when it comes to presentation and his food would be best described as a fusion of European flavours. Try it on a summers day and make sure you sit outback under their vines.
The Ginger Fox, Albourne.
Ben McKellar, chef-owner of the Gingerman group of restaurants and pubs, doesn’t know it, but he’s responsible for our frequent outings to the Sussex countryside and he provides great reasons to do so. This pub is a twist on the Gingerman restaurant and the food feels a lot more assured. Can get a little busy on popular days so please book in advance. Perhaps combine it with a trip to Devils Dyke. Review
The Anchor Inn, Barcombe
Near Barcombe, is a picture postcard Sussex country pub and restaurant set on the west bank of the River Ouse. It is one of the most unspoilt parts of rural Sussex, four miles or so away from Lewes. Built back in 1790, the Inn has a long history, and today offers two cosy bars and two restaurant rooms, serving real ale, bottled lagers, fine wines and freshly prepared food from our menu. Boats can be hired to explore the surrounding river and countryside. A delightful little spot to visit in our opinion with good quality food and it makes you feel like you’ve been out for the day!
The Green Man, Partridge Green
A bit of a drive outside of Brighton, but only 25 minutes or so and worth it. The Green Man isn’t your typical village pub with sports on the TV and gaming machines in the corner, but simply a stylish and relaxed establishment which serves good food and a well-stocked bar with a wide choice of drinks. Owners Becky and Nick say their mission is simple: To give you outstanding food, served with passion.
Into the Blue, Shoreham by Sea
A hidden gem of West Sussex, Into the Blue is a seafood favourite of locals and alike. With the reputation of one of the finest seafood restaurants in the whole of Sussex, it is a must visit for any fish and seafood lover. A pebble’s throw from the beach, the superbly fresh tasting fish is of no surprise coming from the day boats at Shoreham harbour and other local suppliers.
Two hundred years old, the Half Moon is a truly traditional country pub situated at the foot of the stunning South Downs National park. Only 10 minutes both from the town of Lewes and the charming little village of Ditchling. Award winning chef, Richard Willis has been honing his skills in Sussex for many years. He uses the freshest local ingredients and changes the menu constantly to reflect the seasons. Menu includes game from local shoots.
The Bull, Ditchling
The Bull is a stylishly converted pub in the charming village of Ditchling, about 10 minutes north of Brighton. Think low timber beams, open fires and plush leather sofas. There’s also a terrace and a large garden with views of the South Downs for the summer months. The menu is affordable and changes daily including modern British classics, inventive fusion dishes and some lighter vegetarian fare. Great Sunday lunch menu and kids menu also.
The Plough, Pyecombe
Situated on the beautiful South Downs Way, just 5 minutes north of Brighton off the A23 in the historic village of Pyecombe. Popular with walkers, riders and cyclists as it’s a perfect place to rest and re-fuel. The service is extremely warm and friendly and families are very welcome. The menu is extensive with a great selection of dishes for everyone and a slight Mediterranean influence.
The Bell at Ticehurst
The Bell in Ticehurst, East Sussex blend three ingredients: people, produce and place and they make all three ingredients sing and shine. One of the most recommended country pubs in Sussex to eat, drink and to stay, the Bell serve uncomplicated, unrushed British food sourced from local Sussex farmers and suppliers. Full of character and quirk, the Bell is a must visit in the North East of our beautiful county.
The Royal Oak, East Lavant
At heart, a restaurant with rooms rather than a traditional drinking pub the Royal Oak promises a gateway for those wanting to get away from it all. The owners of the Royal Oak are dedicated to good honest food made with fine local ingredients, country warmth and personal service. At the foot of the South Downs it is the perfect place to refuel after a long walk across the hills. Near Chichester.
The Horse Guards, Tillington
Located in the sleepy village of Tillington, the Horse Guards is a 350 year old pub in the South Downs National Park. Serving a small but seasonal menu which changes daily according to what’s sourced from local suppliers, what’s dug out of their own vegetable patch and foraged from the wild hedgerows or shores nearby. Roast locally foraged chestnuts on the open fire in winter or relax outside on straw bale seats in summer. Rooms available. Near Petworth.
The Duke of Cumberland, Midhurst
A 16th Century pub situated on the side of a hill with fantastic views. Still retaining most of its original charm the Duke has flagstone, wooden scrubbed tables and local ales served straight from the barrel. There are even fresh trout swimming around in one of the many garden ponds. The emphasis on the menu is simple and delicious. Award winning head chef and owner Simon Goodman is a big believer of local produce.
The Bolney Stage, Bolney
The Bolney Stage is an absolute treasure. Centuries old, it is literally like stepping back in time. Imagine giant inglenook fireplaces, ancient flagstones, comfy worn furniture and crooked beams snaking across the ceiling. The staff welcome you as if you’re family. The menu is packed with good honest British dishes. Try the Braised Feather of Beef with red wine, caramelised shallots, celeriac boulangère and watercress purée.
The Cat Inn, West Hoathley
A 16th century freehouse, the Cat Inn is set in the picturesque hilltop village of West Hoathley, only 25 minutes from Gatwick. It’s a perfect haven both in the winter and in the summer, with two cozy inglenook fireplaces for a bit of winter warmth and a terrace for the balmier months. With an extensive menu featuring local dishes such as the Roast Partridge, Dauphinoise Potatoes, Braised Red Cabbage, Cavolo Nero, Jus.
The Snowdrop Inn, Lewes
Taking full advantage of the plentiful local ingredients in the area, the Snowdrop is a gorgeous pub and restaurant in the heart of Lewes. The menu features some fantastic local produce including game from South Brockwell Farm, Brookland White chicken, Holmansbridge Farm sausage, Plantations Pigs pork and South Downs lamb. Not forgetting local ales Harveys and Dark Star as well as guest appearances from Thornbridge and others.
The Crown Inn, Dialpost
Near Horsham in West Sussex, the Crown Inn has a strong reputation for it’s excellent quality home-cooked food. Big on supporting their local farms and suppliers and big on seasonality, owner and head chef James is often out and about either visiting his neighbours for meat, vegetables and eggs or out foraging himself for local delights such as blackberries, chamomile and wild garlic. Check out the Crown, they’ll give you the royal treatment.
The George, Alfriston
Listed in Sussex Life magazine as one of the ‘Top 20 Cozy Winter Pubs’, the George is a perfect place to get away from it all. A stunning 14th Century Inn, it oozes character and charm. Oak beams, open log fires and a warm and friendly welcome, the George caters for all people and all occasions. A refreshing local pint after a walk on the surrounding South Downs or a romantic candlelit dinner with your loved one.
The Chequer Inn, Steyning
Having served locals and visitors for over 600 years, the Chequers Inn must have some stories to tell. Warm and welcoming, the Chequers is a proper traditional pub with a lot fo history. They have a slightly separate restaurant though you can also eat in the bar. Supporting the plentiful local suppliers in the area, their menu is simple and classic with no fuss, but created with the best of ingredients.
The Jack and Jill, Ditchling
Jack and Jill went up the hill….and found a pale of ale and a delicious home-cooked meal. The family run Jack and Jill Inn in the historic village of Clayton near Ditchling is a gem of a find. Unpretentious and cozy, it’s a great place to enjoy a good local meal and a refreshing pint. Try the Ashdown Forest venison burger,melting Gruyere, apricot and juniper chutney, chips, green salad.
The Fox Inn, Rudgewick
The Fox Inn is a pretty historic pub set in the beautiful West Sussex countryside between Horsham and Guildford. Combining British tradition with the more exotic Asian fayre, they serve proper pub grub as well as an exciting selection of Chinese dishes. Slow roasted lamb shoulder or Penang Chicken curry. Whatever you decide, wash it all down with a Dorset Ale. Lovely jubbly.