The Crescent Pub Brighton
Ah lockdown, cabin fever, isolation, eating too much and probably all the wrong things, comfort food for sure. Then boom, the voices on high, well Westminster, declare that, with rules, our pubs and restaurants can reopen.
Well for a serious food lover and social animal that was the best news since the start of my one hundred days bore. That said I was very aware that the first weekend could turn out to be a crazed bun fight with hordes of beer hungry loons going mad and forgetting that this crisis is far from over.
So with that in mind I gave it a few days before joining a select and sensible group of friends. I’ve been lucky throughout to be in confinement with my two bezzie mates, Ms McD and Ms C. It’s made it far more bearable for sure and we have shared cooking and played board games on a regular basis. To be frank, without them I think I would have gone mad… well madder!dines
So for our first outing we decided to head to our regular Tuesday night haunt, The Crescent Pub on Clifton Hill. We have been going there almost every Tuesday for around 28 years now to play in the quiz, yes you read that right, 28!
We met three fellow quizzers there, although there was no quiz official, so we had written our own. We chose this venue because we wanted to support a place that for so many years has supported us, it felt right. And it was right, it was well organised, properly laid out and not overcrowded. Ian and his team had made the place feel safe without feeling unfriendly and the service was as charming as ever. We were even given our usual table so we felt that we were back.
The Crescent has for years served decent food, generous and sensibly priced, pub food not pretending to be restaurant fare, and all the better for that. In lockdown they have effected a change so now the menu is Mexican. Now I’ll be honest here and say that of all the world’s cuisines Mexican is not high on my list. Yes it has its place and certainly has its moments, and it does go remarkably well with beer so heigh ho off we went.
One thing stands out immediately, the menu is short and simple, a few small dishes, nibbles and starters followed by a “build your own” selection, you choose your base, your filling and finally your topping. So you can have tacos, quesedillas, burritos or a tortilla salad bowl. To fill them there is pulled beef brisket, king prawns, pork with pineapple salsa, cactus leaves, chicken, halloumi and fish, all with appropriate accompaniments. Then a range of salsas from mild to wild.
I chose the salad bowl with brisket and the chipotle salsa, the wild one. It was wild but not crazy and the crisp tortilla bowl was packed with delicious ingredients, slaw, rice, beans, red onions and avocado. It was big, tasty and to be frank delicious, just what I needed to break my lockdown blues. Friends ordered tacos, quesedillas and a range of the other fillings and they were equally happy.
To top this all off it is great value with only the king prawn option hitting the £10 mark and everything else less. Perhaps a conscious decision on their part to offer a menu that is satisfying and sensibly priced after the hardships of lockdown.
There is little doubt that we will be back as this is a regular social fixture and hooray the quiz is to return too.