Restaurant Brighton's guide to

Pubs with fires

Our top picks

Brighton and Hove

The Cleveland Arms is a pub at the heart of the Fiveways community, and at that heart a roaring fire. The pub itself is modern and comfortable but has kept the essentially ‘pubish’ qualities intact, including friendly staff, good food and drinks, weekday offers and a glowing wood burner to warm the cockles.

The Chimney House Brighton is situated just north of the Seven Dials and the Old Shoreham Rd and east of Dyke Road and it is nestled in a lovely little neighbourhood on Upper Hamilton Road in Brighton. 

The Chimney House serves outstanding food, a great selection of quality drinks and it ticks many boxes as an unpretentious, rustic, retro and a good all round pub! The perfect pub for a cold winters day

For a quirky pub with a reputation for friendly staff and excellent food head to The Better Half. Packed from floor to ceiling with interesting and thoughtful design the choice to install a real fireplace at the time of refurbishment was a smart one and one that earns them a place on this page.

If you’re feeling the bitterness of the winter chill in your bones then you’ll be craving some good old traditional comfort. Head to The Farm Tavern in Hove for that winter blanket where they’ll feed you up on tasty small plates or a Sunday roast and let you warm your cockles by one of their two roaring fires. Their delicious Eastern European Small Plates menu is available Thursday-Saturday for you to work your way through, and the perfect accompaniment while enjoying a pint or two.

The George Payne in Hove is a popular community pub with a lot going on from open mic nights, quizzes and live music. They serve a menu of modern pub fare that’s all freshly made in-house. Dogs and children are welcome and as a spacious and light venue, both will feel perfectly comfortable. The friendly and warm atmosphere extends from staff to fireplace and if you’re lucky you might be able to nab the large comfy armchairs and enjoy the blaze with a well-poured pint. 

The Hartington or “Harty” for short, offers a good selection of beers, wines and spirits, great home-cooked pub food and regular entertainment nights. The fireplace at the seated end of the bar is a perfect spot for some cosy, social times in a welcoming neighbourhood pub. 

Grab a table for a late Sunday lunch, served until 7.30pm with live jazz sessions from 6.00pm for a perfect winter weekend wind down.

The Poets Ale and Smokehouse is a popular community pub with a mix of classic and modern styling. The smokey smells will alert you to their menu, which features deliciously satisfying dishes from their in-house smokery. The other smokey smell will be coming from the large red-brick fireplace in the main bar area. The Poets is family and dog friendly and while it airs a broad range of sporting events you won’t feel like you’re in a sports pub. 

Cosy up next to the roaring fire with a jug of the good stuff at Bierhaus this winter. When we say good stuff we mean the internationally acclaimed beers that come straight from their local breweries barrels at Brighton Bier Brewery. In fact, it’s worth noting that this is a specialist beer pub, they stock an unrivalled selection of European beers as well as their house brews. As well as top quality beverages they serve Bratwurst style hotdogs and offer you a BYO food option!

The Dorset is a local favourite, it’s stood the test of time and proved time and again that it’s a fantastic and reliable spot for great drinks, quality gastro pub classics and always has a lively and friendly atmosphere.

Its superb North Laine location makes it a great meeting place, ideal for some idle people-watching. What’s more, they have an open fire which is set to be ablaze all winter long. So go check it out and stay cosy this winter.

The Independent is a local pub between Queens Park, with its gorgeous villas, beautiful parkland and Hanover Hill – which is well worth a visit alone for its bohemian village in a city feel. In a nutshell, the Independent is a beer, wine & food pub but, perhaps the subtleties run deeper and there are pretty decent cocktails too. You will also find artisan roasted coffee, loose leaf teas, breakfasts, jazz nights and vinyl spins regularly on a lovely Rega turntable.

You’ll find open fires to enjoy in The Bar and Kitchen restaurant at Rockwater. And since this impressive multi-venue has it all, it shouldn’t come as a surprise that they also have fires lit in The Roof Terrace restaurant during the cooler months as well as a log burner pumping out the heat in The Lodge. In The Bar and Kitchen, you can enjoy a cosy, pub-style atmosphere, with a gastro-classic menu to boot. The comfortable restaurants are a great spot to warm up after a brisk seaside stroll and the lovingly designed interiors might even invite you to cosy up for the whole afternoon. The Roof Terrace, while vastly different in style, warms the cockles with elegant open fires, fresh seafood and Asian-inspired small plates, and a glass or two of fine wine.”

Haus on the Hill at the top of Southover Street is a lovely local pub serving the Hanover community. Owned by award-winning local superstars, Brighton Bier, this is a proper beer pub that also serves fantastic Caribbean food from the kitchen of Danny O’Shea. The traditional saloon style bar keeps an open fire burning in the winter months for cosy times atop the hill


Perfectly positioned in the idyllic Sussex countryside, The Cider Tap is well equipped to warm your cockles when you’re chilly. The west-facing venue benefits from a large lawned garden, which is headed by several log burners. It makes for a stunning spot to watch the sunset, and if you’re there to feast, you’ll be able to enjoy the exquisite, weekly changing menu from the kitchen residency – The Syndicate Kitchen – uses exclusively local produce to create their mouth-watering dishes – yum! (Call ahead to check open hours)

The Cricketers pub in Worthing is the perfect choice for a cosy and warm evening during the winter months. With its nooks and charming fireplaces strategically placed throughout the pub, you can find your own corner to relax and unwind. Immerse yourself in the comforting glow of the fire, creating a snug and inviting ambiance that adds to the overall charm of the pub. Whether you’re enjoying a drink or indulging in their delicious food, The Cricketers Worthing offers a welcoming and cosy atmosphere for a memorable winter evening.

Brimming with enough warmth and charm to warm the cockles on the coldest of Sussex days is The New Inn in the picturesque village of Hurstpierpoint. The New Inn serves a wonderful selection of modern gastropub fare and an award-winning wine selection, as well as local ales and more widely known brands. Dog-friendly, family-friendly with a thoroughly friendly team, The New Inn is a charming destination, worth going out of your way to visit.

The Crabtree is a relaxed and elegant country pub that marries modern and classic seamlessly – taking the best from both. The menu is seasonal and locally sourced, the wine and beer are of top quality and the service is impeccable. 

This country pub certainly ticks every box, time and again. One thing that the modern heating system cannot replace is the smell crackle and fascination of a real fire. So, naturally, this is one of those classic elements that has been retained throughout.

The Sussex Ox is situated in the heart of Sussex countryside between Cuckmere valley and Lullington. Set in it’s own gardens and farmland, which provides much of it’s menu with fresh, seasonal and very local produce the heart of the pub is no doubt the Old Bar. This cosy beamed snug features a brick floor and open fire with a fine selection of local craft ales, beers and ciders as well as an emphasis on bio-dynamic wines.

The Sussex Ox is situated in the heart of Sussex countryside between Cuckmere valley and Lullington. Set in it’s own gardens and farmland, which provides much of it’s menu with fresh, seasonal and very local produce the heart of the pub is no doubt the Old Bar. This cosy beamed snug features a brick floor and open fire with a fine selection of local craft ales, beers and ciders as well as an emphasis on bio-dynamic wines.

This beautiful old inn in the ‘miss it if you blink’ hamlet of Fulking literally sits at the foot of the South Downs. Which is why its huge beer garden is on a very big upwards slope. I did say literally. 

Although recently refurbished, it has sensibly retained most of its 18th-century charm including its original fireplace and wood burner. The menu ranges from traditional pub classics to fine cuisine.