Posted by: lifeonislandtime | July 28, 2015

British pubs

British Pubs
Travis and I stayed in an area called St. Katherine’s Dock in London. This is one of the man-made marinas on the Thames. It’s outside the Tower of London, so is still pretty historic. 
Down the road is the oldest pub on the Thames. It’s called “The City of Ramsgate” and it has been a pub in the same location by the same name since 1725. The floors are uneven and creaky, it’s dark inside, the beer is cold, and the food is plentiful and cheap. We shared the sausage platter, and both left full. The meal consisted of a Yorkshire pudding bowl full of sausage pieces, chips, and a tureen of gravy. The sausage was slightly spicy, the gravy was made with the house ale, and the chips were double-fried. In all, a very satisfying meal.
Another historic pub on the Thames has only been a pub since the 1980’s, but is in a warehouse that has been there since the early 1700’s. It was more atmospheric than the Ramsgate. It had the giant hand hewn beams in the ceiling, stone walls, and windows that used to open onto the unloading ships on the Thames. Sadly, this pub stops serving hot food at 8pm, so we didn’t get to eat there, but did have drinks and a nice chat with the sweet bartender who has a dream of road-tripping around the U.S. some day.
Our third historic pub was on Fleet Street called the Tiperary During the medieval period it was a pub that rented rooms, and eventually was purchased by a pair of Irish brothers, who got permission to serve Guiness beer. It was the first place outside Ireland to serve Guiness, so we had to eat there. We shared a ham and chicken 

pie while the rain poured down. The food was excellent, as was the beer. 
The 4th historic pub we went to we saw originally on our Jack the Ripper tour. It has been a pub since 1667 when it was the first building rebuilt after the great fire of 1666. We split an excellent order of fish and chips there on a quiet Saturday evening.
Many people have ridiculed the British for having boring, bland, or uninspired food. We have found the truth to be quite different. Pub meals are typically big enough to share, relatively cheap, and very flavorful. The only critique I would have is that it’s heavy, stick-to-your-ribs food, and is very good on a rainy, cold day; a bit much for hot weather. 
We, of course, lucked out, as it has been a balmy 60 for our trip in London so far. A warming steak and ale pie is just what hits the spot. Served in an historic pub, of course.


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