Gastro pub, food pub, you know what we mean. A pub that takes its food as seriously as its beer – and we do expect them to be serious about both. With an amazing selection of exceptional food pubs and bars on offer here is a handy list of some of the best.
The Cricketers, Black Lion Street
The Cricketers is a pub stooped in history and vibrant, traditional saloon-style pub in a popular central location. The menu comes from the kitchen of Phil Bartley and focuses on honest pub food classics made better with only the best quality ingredients and locally sourced meat, fish and vegetables. Choose from classic sandwiches served in crusty baguettes to locally landed fish and chips or hearty pies. Burgers make up a large portion of the menu with chicken burgers, dirty burgers, squeaky halloumi burgers and ‘can’t believe it’s not meat’ B12 vegan burgers, all served with triple cooked chips. The Greene Room, named after local author Graham Greene, is also available for private hire with buffet catering
Take a stroll upstairs in The Walrus and you will find one of the most opulent pub dining rooms in the city. The pub has continued its theme into the restaurant area, adding some serious style and detail with turquoise tones, mismatch seating and grand tables. On the menu you will find homely classics like Braised Beef Cheek Pie to Moroccan inspired Lamb Tagine. Finish off with their Rosewater, Cardamom and Orange Creme Brûlée, it’s delicious!
The Roundhill Pub, Ditchling Road
The Roundhill Pub is a light and friendly space, with a pleasant conservatory feel to it. The menu changes weekly, according to what’s available locally and in season and offers a mix of pub classics and modern dishes. The menu is vegan by default, although some dishes can be made vegetarian, The Roundhill Pub fills the gap in Brighton for a plant-based pub-venue serving a more elevated gastro pub menu.
The West Hill Tavern, Buckingham Place
A two-minute walk up from Brighton train station, the recently renovated West Hill Tavern is a gem of a pub. With great views, music nights and of course excellent food & drink. You can stop by for a big burger, a Sunday roast with your family, a pint whilst watching the latest events, or enjoy some live jazz on a Thursday. The West Hill Tavern is a family-friendly, dog-friendly pub welcoming you with a big smile!
The Dorset, North Road
The Dorset brings you everything you long for in a country pub, right in the centre of town – A rustic interior, a classic pub grub menu, alfresco dining and a welcoming, friendly front of house team. Right on the corner of North Road, the location is perfect for a pre or post-shopping bite to eat to a late afternoon, after work pint. Examples on their most recent menu include pie of the day served with mash, fillet of cod with artichokes and sausage and mash, not forgetting their famous Moules mariniere which has been a firm favourite among locals since the beginning.
The Black Lion, Black Lion Street
Few pubs experience such a transformation over the course of a day than The Black Lion. During the day the pub offers a refuge from the hustle and bustle of Brighton’s Lanes and a tempting array of gastro pub style dishes. With sharing platters, small plates and a variety of mains they have got most things covered. Pop back in the evening and you will find one of the liveliest pubs in Brighton and the party in full swing.
As if the drinks and the music weren’t enough, the menu at The Mesmerist is also top-notch. The menu is split into sections, including bar snacks, small plates, mains (including their brilliant burgers!) and side dishes. The kitchen uses exclusively seasonal ingredients to create traditional dishes with a twist, that are ten times better than your average pub grub.
The Revelator, Western Road
Feeling like some southern fried chicken with a craft ale? Or perhaps some BBQ ribs with your favourite bourbon whiskey. Check out this Southwest American style pub on Western Road, serving an epic selection of beer, ale and bourbon whiskey along with finger-lickin’ food!
The Seven Stars, Ship Street
Occupying an impressive building on Ship Street, The Seven Stars, is a craft beer and gin pub that has built a solid reputation in the city. The food is handled by Croustillant D cooking classic flavours mixed with modern techniques that deliver flavour and tantalise tummies.
The Tempest, Kings Road Arches
One of the more unique seafront bars in Brighton, the Tempest consists of a series of caves to explore. Above the caves, there is a room with huge windows where you can sit and take in the spectacular views of Brighton seafront. Being so close to the sea you will be happy to find that the menu focuses almost exclusively on seafood. The kitchen is operated by the “Crab Claw”, and they have put together a menu that is hard not to salivate over, not literally.
The Victory, Duke Street
Established in 1766 making it one of Brighton’s oldest pubs, the Victory on Duke Street has kept most of it’s original features giving it a really authentic and traditional feel. Serving an ever-changing range of real ales this is a pub for the purists who appreciate things how they should be. The food is simple but quality, featuring many pub classics and light bites supplemented by a range of “Victory Burgers”.
The Brighton Beer Dispensary, Dizzy Gull, Dean St
Located just off Western Road you could be forgiven for missing this excellent pub, but The Brighton Beer Dispensary has some of the best beers in town and great food to match. The kitchen operates under the name “Dizzy Gull” and serves some of the most inventive pub food in town. With a menu of pub snacks, small plates and very popular Sunday Roasts you definitely wont want to miss this place again.
The Basketmakers Arms, Gloucester Rd
One of Brighton’s most well known and loved pubs, The Basketmakers, serves top quality food and drink in the heart of the North Laine. This traditional British boozer has not succumbed to any food fads over the years, preferring to stick with hearty home-cooked food and daily specials that are good as any in the city. With multiple awards to its name you cannot go wrong with a trip to this Brighton pub.
The Earth and Stars is a pub that has manages to balance a proper pub feel with an ethical approach that sits comfortably within Brighton’s wider appeal. It is a pub that you can easily miss as it is just behind the main shopping areas but is a haven for hungry visitors and locals alike. With a solar panel on the roof providing the power, and a list of organic, vegan, veggie and omnivorous options on the menu this pub should keep everyone happy.
The Worlds End, London Road
The Worlds End has long been a bit of a student haunt and it definitely has that sort of vibe. The food comes courtesy of Bar-B-Q Shack and when it comes to all things meat this place is seriously impressive. From whopping great burgers, to ribs and brisket everything is slow smoked and totally delicious. With regular events and a fantastic craft beer selection The World’s End will be heaven for some and a guilty pleasure for others.
There was a time when the idea of a pub serving a completely vegetarian menu would be unheard of, although perhaps not in Brighton. The Prince George has become well known for its extensive award winning vegetarian menu; but it is much more than just that. A fantastic lively pub with an impressive range of drinks on offer, The Prince George is the ideal place to rest your feet for an hour or two and soak up the atmosphere.
Hare and Hounds, Preston Circus
This imposing pub on the corner of Preston Circus has become synonymous with the areas recent upturn. The spacious pub stocks an impressive range of craft beers and ales and is popular with most crowds. The kitchen is operated by the popular Little Blue Smokehouse.
The Fountain Head, North Road
Warm and inviting, the Fountain Head is a favourite amongst Brightonians. Always packed with every type of punter, ranging from after work drinkers, students and loyal ‘old-timers’. Combining classic with contemporary it has original exposed brickwork and two open fires all in a light and airy space. The food menu is quality pub food including sandwiches, burgers and main dishes plus they also have a kids menu to keep the little ones happy.
The Hobgoblin, York Place
The Hobgoblin is one of those pubs that always seems to be busy. This could be due to the variety of honestly priced drinks, or the huge beer garden, but could also be as a result of their food offering. Previously home to Troll Burger, the kitchen is now operated by Doughbo who have struck a chord with carb lovers across Brighton. Their wood fired dough balls are a unique food experience and one that you will not forget. Review
The Sussex Yeoman, Guildford Road, Brighton Station
The Sussex Yeoman has a reputation for excellent food. Serving top notch food from quality ethically sourced suppliers and supports many local and national animal welfare charities. The Sussex Yeoman attracts a great locals crowd (known locally as the ‘manor’) and is always a friendly and welcoming venue. The menu has a distinctly gastro pub feel to it, with daily specials and vegetarian options, and their roasts are well regarded across the city.
The Druids Arms, Ditchling Road
The Druids Arms is a friendly and vibrant pub situated just across from The Level. This proudly independent pub is unique in that it has not one, but two different food offerings. During the week you can sample the award winning Trolls Pantry including their new ethically sourced Troll Doner. On a Sunday The Caribbean Kitchen invite you to chill out with Caribbean roasts and mains all washed down with laid back reggae grooves.
Food Pubs and Food Bars in Hove
The Urchin, Belfast Street
Uniquely positioning itself as a venue which only serves shellfish, The Urchin celebrates the fruits of the sea from our Brighton shores. With regular supplies from BN Fish, The Urchin has some of the freshest seafood available in the city. With a superb range of craft beers on offer, where else in Sussex can you dine on fresh shellfish with a craft beer expertly matched to your palette?
The Better Half Pub, Hove Gastro Pub
The Better Half is a traditional pub with a modern twist. One of the oldest pubs in the city, it has recently been revamped in a way that respects its history whilst bringing it bang up to date. The food is a celebration of simplicity, focussing on classic dishes and hearty wholesome food. This is a proper local pub, with a warm friendly welcome and superb home-cooked dishes.
Hove Place, First Avenue
This little hidden gem of a pub is easily missed. Situated on First Avenue, this bistro pub features a stylish interior and a wonderful garden for those summer days. When it comes to the food you can choose from the traditional pub menu or if you fancy trying a few dishes, their Small Plates menu is perfect for sharing. Sleek, stylish and very Hove this is a venue for those looking for something a little more polished.
The George Payne, Payne Avenue
There’s a lot on offer at the George Payne, a thriving community-centric pub which is tucked a few streets back from Portland Road. The menu is an enjoyable mix of elevated pub classics, modern British and globally inspired dishes. The pub and the menu have both managed a good balance of modernisation without losing what is wanted out of a classic pub and its fare, with creative and thoughtful options for all dietary requirements. Sunday lunches are a big hit for locals, as well as those from further afield, as word spreads of their quality and plentiful offerings. Weekdays meal-deals make for some appetising and affordable excuses not to cook.
Libation, Second Avenue
If you’re looking for a relaxed, friendly and vibrant place to quaff some wine with friends whilst enjoying a light lunch or an evening meal then Libation could be for you. Libation offers a menu of fresh, seasonal produce that has been used to create a choice of sharing Tapas style plates or larger mains. With heated outdoor seating you can enjoy your food al fresco at any time of the day.
The Ginger Pig is a key part of Hove’s food scene and a proper food destination in every sense of the word. Awarded ‘Best Food Pub’ in the Brighton and Hove Food Awards 3 years running, they serve traditional classics with a modern touch. The menu of locally sourced and seasonal dishes never fails to disappoint, and their wine list is superb. They are currently adding accommodation so you can even stay the night.
Lion and Lobster, Silwood Street
One of Brighton and Hove’s most unique and historic pubs, the Lion and Lobster is a pub with a legendary status in the city. Situated over a number of different floors with a pub menu, restaurant and award-winning Sunday roasts it ticks a lot of boxes. With an eclectic mix of patrons and an often lively and happening atmosphere, the Lion and Lobster is a pub that you will want to tell your friends about.
Freemasons, Western Road Hove
Few pubs can rival the exterior of this Grade II listed Brunswick pub. With its two-storey tiled mosaic frontage and art deco windows it packs some wow appeal. Inside you will find a warm welcome and further nods to the pub’s architectural heritage. The food focuses on quality home-cooked dishes at affordable prices with plenty to choose from including their own “bangin’ burgers” menu.
The Old Albion, Church Road
The much loved Hove based pub, has re-opened its doors under new management this year, with a fresh yet nostalgic look. Serving great food such as pub classics and Sunday roasts, delicious drinks with a fantastic range of gin, all accompanied with friendly staff and good music. What more can you ask for!
Food Pubs in the Seven Dials
The Chimney House, Upper Hamilton Road
The Chimney House serves outstanding food and a great selection of quality drinks in an unpretentious, rustic and all round good pub. Known for their local sourcing, including the use of foraged herbs and vegetables, the food has a distinctively Sussex feel. The pub has a lovely relaxed community feel to it making for a great atmosphere. Situated just off Dyke Road it is a great spot for an afternoon off the beaten track.
The Cow, Dyke Road
The Cow is a fun and lively bar in the heart of Seven Dials. With a brilliant selection of craft beers and floor to ceiling windows it is a great place to sit and watch the world go by. The menu features a grill and burger section along with small plates, nibbles and a few other mains. Perfect for any time of day, The Cow is a elaxed and casual pub that has got most bases covered.
The Prestonville Arms, Hamilton Road
Following a full refurbishment this community pub has stepped out of the shadow of its former incarnation. It is now a family friendly local that is bright and welcoming, with a lovely open fire and plenty of seating. When it comes to the food they have made a statement in being the only 100% gluten free pub kitchen in Brighton and Hove. The “Munkeechops” kitchen offers pub classics with a twist, including a burgers and pies menu and regular specials.
The Good Companions, Dyke Road
This large pub and restaurant has managed to retain the feel and friendliness of a local, with a range of real Sussex ales and world beers served from a bar well stocked with sausage rolls and free pork scratchings. Family friendly and with plenty of room for bigger parties the kitchen serves from midday to 9.30 Monday to Saturday, changing to an evening menu from 5.00pm. You’ll find a good range of well prepared classics, light bites and tasty salads as well as plenty of gluten free, vegetarian and vegan options
Food Pubs in Kemptown
Busby and Wilds, Rock Street
Tucked away on a quiet residential road, Busby and Wilds, is Kemptown’s best kept secret. This local gastropub has built up a reputation for serving excellent locally sourced dishes that can hold their own with some of the best in the city. With an extensive range of local ales and international beers, not to mention the handpicked wine list, this family and dog friendly pub is real gem. Booking is highly recommended, especially if you want to try one of their superb Sunday roasts.
The Ginger Dog, College Place
Based up a side street on the way through Kemptown, The Ginger Dog, is another great restaurant and pub brought to you by the Ginger Group. Different to the other Gingerman group enterprises, in the sense that it is a very cosy pub and not overly formal, they serve high end pub food that focusses on locally sourced and seasonal ingredients. Family and dog friendly, with a range of local ales and great wines, this is the sort of pub that could easily become your local.
The Sidewinder, St James’ Street
One of the more easily recognisable pubs in Brighton, thanks to the one eyed crab artwork on the exterior, The Sidewinder is one of the more lively venues in the city. With an eclectic clientele, regular DJs and events plus two large sun bathed gardens, or heated for when the sun isn’t playing ball, this pub has a very Brighton feel to it. With a new kitchen due to launch very soon we are hoping that the Sunday roasts remain as they have consistently been one of the best in the city.
Food Pubs in the Hanover area
The Hartington, Whippingham Road
The Hartington is a traditional (for Hanover) neighbourhood pub with quizzes weekday meal deals, pub games and live music. New management came in in the Summer of 2018 set to return the pub to its former glory as one of the best food pubs in the area. The menu is simple pub classics but delivered with excellence and Sunday roasts are served until late with live jazz sessions making for some relaxed social dining at the end of the weekend.
The Independent, Queens Park Road
As the name suggests this independently run pub is free of any brewery ties, this makes for some interesting beer choices. Food is at the centre of everything this pub does, and luckily the offering is top draw. Gastro pub style dishes of restaurant quality are the order of the day at The Independent. A fantastic local pub that is often busy and lively, it is well worth the trip up Southover Street to sample the delights at the top.
The Geese, Southover St
Serving 12 different varieties of homemade locally sourced sausages and ten different versions of mash, the Geese pub in the heart of the Hanover, is becoming somewhat of an institution. Situated on the lower slopes of the pub friendly Southover Street, this is a welcoming local boozer that has a real community feel. Catering for gluten free and veggies too, plus an excellent Sunday roast, there really is no excuse not to visit this classic Brighton Boozer.
The Hanover, Queens Park Road
Part of the Indigo pub group, the Hanover is a bright, modern and friendly neighbourhood pub. A great place to come for a relaxed meal with friends or family, they specialise in serving handmade pizzas that can be made gluten free and even for take away. Not content with this they also have a selection of burgers, mains and a Sunday roast menu. Simple honest food in a warm and relaxed setting, The Hanover is a great local pub.
Food Pubs near Ditchling Rise/ Preston Park
Lost Boys Chicken at The Joker, Preston Circus
Quitting the hipster heights of Shoreditch in 2014 and coming to settle in the renovated and rejuvenated pub, The Joker, Lost Boys Chicken (originally named Orange Buffalo) has been an immediate success. Serving up New York style chicken with a great selection of sources that go up in heat suite those of subtle taste through to those who have something to prove. As well as wings there’s a great selection of sides and seriously stacked sandwiches. The joker serves a truly Brightonian mix of real ales, craft beers and expertly mixed cocktails and keeps the party going into the early hours with DJ’s every weekend. It should come as no surprise then that this combo won Best Food Pub in the 2016 BRAVO awards.
The Cleveland Arms, Cleveland Rd
Recently renovated, The Cleveland Arms is a stylish pub overlooking Blakers Park near Five Ways. This traditional community pub serves Sussex ales, good quality wines and spirits and expertly cooked gasto pub style dishes served at lunch and dinner. On a Sunday, the roast is not to be missed and with children and dogs welcome, what is not to love? In the warmer months, sit outside in their suntrap overlooking the park with friends or family, sharing a couple of the small plates on the menu. Find out more here.
The Open House, Springfield Road
A large pub near London Road station, the Open House is a great place for a get together with friends or family. With three separate indoor areas, an upstairs function room and attractive beer garden, you can find your own little haven in this pub. The menu features high quality pub food which is simple but well chosen. With local art work on the walls and regular artists open houses, this is a bohemian pub with a relaxed and comforting feel.
Signalman, Ditchling Rise
Located right next to London Road train station, the Signalman has the vigour of a station pub combined with the warmth and comfort of a traditional pub. Suitable for all tastes and moods, there’s a large TV for sport, a sun trap garden to soak up some rays and even a library to choose a good book. The Food is handled by Space & Thyme and features crowd pleasing dishes, pub classics and small plates for sharing. The Signalman is a do it all pub that does it all well.
The Preston Park Tavern, Havelock Rd
One for locals and people in the know, The Preston Park Tavern is a contemporary gastro pub with an ethical and sustainable ethos. With meat supplied from local butcher Barfield’s they have tapped into their local community to offer some excellent pub food with a modern twist. The pub is welcoming and cosy with a family friendly feel to it making for a lovely atmosphere.
Outside Brighton, Sussex Food Pubs
The Sussex Ox, Polegate
Located just at the foot of the Long Man of Wilmington, The Sussex Ox is the perfect pub for a spot of country dining. Inside the low wooden beams, miss matched historic farm photographs and the two gorgeous wood burners give the pub a real quirky character which creates a warm welcoming atmosphere. The menu features a vast selection of meats from their own organic farm, alongside fish and vegetarian/vegan dishes – all using fresh and seasonal ingredients. Sit outside in the summer and enjoy a pint of something local enjoying the extraordinary views of the south downs!
The New Inn, Hurstpierpoint
The New Inn in Hurstpierpoint is a beautiful Grade II listed pub that has been lovingly and thoughtfully modernised. A seasonal and local menu is available for lunch and dinner six days a week with Sunday’s given over to the classic roast. The New Inn has a commitment to local; sourcing much of their meat, fish and produce from within Sussex, as well as having their own kitchen garden. The Josper oven is a stand out feature for the menu, where Trenchmore wagyu is cooked with the respect it deserves. Regular “Taste of” nights pair global cuisine with wine and the wood-fired pizza oven in the garden makes for care-free summer pizza nights.
The Plough, Rottingdean
Situated in the historic coastal village of Rottingdean, The Plough is a traditional village pub that acts as the beating heart of the local community. Offering a classic pub menu alongside an innovative gastro pub Menu, this venue caters for everybody from kids to couples and walkers to your everyday regular. Close enough to Brighton as a spot to reward yourself on a Sunday stroll, The Plough is a fabulous pub to while away a Sunday afternoon with a roast and local ale.
The Wheatsheaf, Henfield
The country pub serves up modern, unpretentious cuisine, based on traditional pub fare but with a hint of the Mediterranean and the odd salute to the head chef’s native land of Brazil. Dipping just as widely into the global pallet, there is a good selection of local and world wines, ales and beers. Family and dog friendly The Wheatsheaf has a large beer garden with play area as well as comfy sofas and a real fire making this a well rounded gem of a country pub.
The Bull, Henfield
Located just north of Henfield, The Bull is a traditional style pub that is popular for their freshly made to order pizzas that are stone baked in a traditional oven. With over 20 different toppings to choose from, you can mix and match to your heart’s content! If pizza isn’t your thing then you could go for a pasta dish or one of their burgers or pasta dishes. With a large pub garden, children’s play area and log fire, this is still a traditional country pub to enjoy all year round.
The Crabtree is located in the beautiful Sussex countryside south of Horsham. They pride themselves in serving great local, seasonal food, organic wines and fabulous real ales in warm and welcoming surroundings. With daily lunch menu changes, a seasonal A la Carte and weekly Sunday lunch menu no two visits will ever be the same. Offers include a set menu deal plus burger nights, making The Crabtree popular for regular visitors.
The Oak Barn, Burgess Hill
The Oak Barn is a 250 year old barn that has been lovingly restored to a family run bar and restaurant. The team of Chefs provide a wealth of talent, evident in both the style and quality of their food. All dishes are freshly prepared using the finest local produce and ingredients. Offering a range of menus to choose from including Sunday Roasts, a comprehensive bar menu, weekend a la carte and children’s menu. They will also soon be offering a Gluten Free menu.
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 traditional pub in the large but pretty village of Cuckfield near Haywards Heath. The modern restaurant is separate from the pub. Light, spacious and airy it is a lovely place for a relaxed meal. Being dog friendly it is really popular with dog loving locals and passing dog walkers alike. The menu is carefully crafted with a good selection of classic British dishes cooked with locally sourced ingredients and real passion.
Shepherd and Dog, Fulking Gastro Pub
This beautiful old inn in the ‘miss it if you blink’ hamlet of Fulking sits at the foot of the South Downs. Although recently refurbished, it has sensibly retained most of it’s 18th century charm including it’s original fireplace and woodburner. The menu ranges from traditional pub classics to fine cuisine. It has recently gained a reputation for being one of the best craft beer countryside pubs in the county thanks to its twice yearly craft beer festivals.
Fountain Inn, Ashurst
This beautiful pub dates back to the 16th Century, and so as you would expect comes with all the hallmarks of it age. With a mix of ancient flagstones, oak floorboards and inglenook fireplaces you can happily spend an afternoon snug inside this pub. The proper hearty pub food, “cask marque” ales and interesting wine list has got the food and drink covered. With a pleasant garden, gluten free and kids menu available this pleasant country pub should keep everyone happy.
A well reputed pub in the beautiful hamlet of Poynings, The Roysl Oak is situated at the foot of the South Downs by the famous Devils Dyke. A 10 minute drive from Brighton, it’s easy to get to but makes you feel deep in the countryside. Buzzing with loyal locals most nights, it’s one of those pubs where everyone’s welcome. A slightly separate restaurant at the back where you can enjoy the superb sophisticated pub menu.
Ginger Fox, Albourne
Nestled not far from the Devils Dyke, the Ginger Fox is the country cousin of Brighton’s other Ginger group restaurants. A lovely pub and restaurant to get away from it all, it cuts an impressive sight with its thatched roof and beer garden with child friendly play area and treasure trail. Bordering on fine dining, but in a relaxed setting, the modern European menu utilises the best quality ingredients available. With local ales and wines you will be spoilt for choice.