Hampshire: The Pub With No Name aka The White Horse
Now that it’s getting closer and closer to the big move date, I’m getting increasingly antsy about the lack-of-shelter situation in Paris and starting to miss all things Anglais. The flat in Kensington, the convenience of knowing where I can get a good deal on re-heeling my shoes and mani/pedi, my Oyster card, late night China Town munchies, cream tea and pubs. I love a good scone and I love a good pub.
What I’m annoyed with myself about is that I still haven’t gotten around to getting myself a driving license. I don’t even know how to drive. I realised the importance of driving as a skill while watching a CSI episode – Psycho was chasing no-name blonde nubile girl around a car park with a hacksaw when girl spots a no-name 4 wheel drive with the keys in the ignition and drives away to safety. Had that girl been yours truly, I’d be served up as meat pie du jour.
Apart from all the obvious reasons of why I should really know how to drive by now, if I had gotten all this nonsense underway I would’ve been driving around the country sampling every service station (LOVE service stations!) and country pub. This week we missioned it to The Pub With No Name aka The White Horse in Hampshire. Apparently it’s called the Pub with no Name as it’s on a driveway with no name…but the pub does have a name…all very confusing.
It’s the highest pub in Hampshire. So high that it was still snowing up there which made it all the more special as the real log fire inside kept us nice and toasty.
We shared mixed samosas with mustard “chutney”, and prawns in garlic, butter, and chili to start with. We couldn’t quite decipher what the mix in the mixed samosas was made of. It tasted of pumpkin or butternut squash and was mushy in consistency but the pastry was deliciously crisp. Crisp and mush is a great combo. The mustard “chutney” suspiciously tasted of mustard mayo. The prawns were plump and juicy and I loved scooping up the chili garlic butter with thick slices of snow-white bread.
This pub has some of the best English food I have had to date. The Beetroot and Goats Cheese Risotto was so fitting for a cold winter’s day. The cheese was all oozey and meltey over the risotto and the beetroot had imparted its pretty burgundy colour to the rice. The small starter portion was surprisingly large but it didn’t take long for it all to be wolfed down.
The pub-lady advised us that the meat was locally sourced from the farm across the hill and the burgers are top notch. Of course, a double decker Beef and Turkey burger had to be ordered. It didn’t disappoint but it wasn’t the best burger I’ve ever had (Sticky Fingers is very hard to beat). It may have been the turkey that let it down. Why do people eat turkey? Ruins anything that has a modicum of potential. The accompanying chips were cooked perfectly though. Real proper spuds cut into thick chips providing the perfect vessel to carry condiments into the mouth.
The show-stopper was the Mexican Chili Bangers and Mash with Caramelised Onions and Gravy. A-M-A-Z-I-N-G. The sausages packed in a punch, with jalapenos and spices, and the mash was its best bud smothered in gravy and sweet caramelised onions. What a party. The best Bangers and Mash. Ever.
I don’t care if I have to hitch a ride with a hacksaw-wielding psycho but I’m not letting the lack of vehicular mobility skills get in the way of me and the Great British Pub.