As mentioned in the write up of the Yapton Beerex we also visit a couple of Good Beer guide pubs in the area during our stay.
The first is The Crown in Littlehampton which for some reason always seems to entice a snigger from the local mini cab drivers. The main gist of this is seems to be of the opinion that the pub is full of dodgy characters and old weirdos who deviate from the norm. Well that’s fine by us!
I find the place to be a pretty decent boozer but it goes up a notch or two when you realise it is the brewery tap for the nearby Anchor Springs Brewery.
Sadly the excellent Riptide (4.1%) was not available (I took that pic last year!) when we popped in but Hornblower (sweet, malty and lightly hopped 4.5%) and the Mild (fruity, slightly sweet and a bit of choc’ 3.8%) were on. I had a couple of pints of the latter and we adjourned to the sun lounge/roof to enjoy our beers sneaking past an aviary of 20 or so budgies who were chirping away in unison.
The pub has a strong community focus with a number of live music and other events. It’s the best pub by far in Littlehampton and too be honest I couldn’t really recommend anywhere else in the town based on previous visits.
The other pub we visit is The Maypole which is on the outskirts of Yapton tucked up a country lane. It’s only one of two pubs left in the town with The Lamb shutting since our last visit and the Olive Branch, or as the name now reads on the outside “Oli Brac h” (is that it’s Gaelic name?), always seems to be deserted.
This is a free house which has changed hands since our visit last year but thankfully nothing else has. It has two bars with the larger having a games room (pool, darts, TV) including a skittle alley that never seems to be open! There is also a large outside area and beer garden.
Like last year the place was almost deserted as most of the regulars were at the Beerex evening session. The pub has six beers on at any one time so we partook in the Darkstar Hophead (3.8%) and Purple Moose Dark Side Of The Moose (4.6%) in the main. The regulars are a friendly lot as are the bar staff who all contribute to a warm welcome.
Sadly for those in attendance we hijacked the digital jukebox during our many games of pool and unfortunately for the regulars it was 33 years to the day of the death of Ian Curtis plus 30 years to the week of the release of Hand In Glove which meant plenty of Joy Division & The Smiths. I reckon beer intake amongst the remaining regulars must of increased greatly listening to that lot!
We went back on the Sunday night for a the weekends final few. Sitting outside (it was a humid evening) we were approached by someone from the previous night. “Please” he said “no more Smiths”!
An excellent pub with beer kept in tip top condition. Well worth a visit. Just keep us away from the jukebox……..