THIS ain’t half a pub. Well actually it is, that’s exactly what it is — the other half’s been turned into a restaurant.
Having negotiated the Sun In The Sands roundabout and parked out front, I was ready for a pint.
Safely inside the triangular-shaped half-pub the barman put down his mobile to serve me. I played safe with a pint of Kronie, but took a risk on some special-shaped salt and vinegar crisps — not bad, but a bit steep at 90p.
The Kronenbourg took a while to pour, but the friendly, chatty barman persevered gamely and informed me he was standing in on his brother’s day off.
If I’d only been able to see past the flock wallpaper and Christmas decorations I would have spotted the sign for kebabs behind the bar and could have skipped the crisps.
Kebabs might not be an everyday bar food offering, but the peanuts on a card are certainly traditional fare. In some ways this pub, which has a history dating back to the 17th Century (Ye Sunne Inn), could be classed as very traditional — a pool table (Third Division of the Frank Smith winter league), dart board, barrels made into tables etc.
Anyway, I decided to ditch tradition and went for a chicken shish wrap – it was fantastic, though I was reminded just how good the chilli sauce was at regular intervals over the next few hours!
Apart from the Cypriot barman, my only other companion was a fellow in a flat cap and a green jacket who looked like he’d be more at home bagging a stag.
Apart from his pint, he had two identical-looking mobile phones on his table which would occasionally whistle at him. Nothing, however, seemed to please this country-style gent and he looked very glum for my entire visit.
So, to recap, it’s a triangular shaped, Turkish-run, half-pub with records nailed to the wall, D cup nuts and a gamekeeper. I decided things couldn’t get any stranger.
And then, in walked Jesus — I kid you not, he really nailed it, not only the trademark beard and hair but even the robe and sandals.
Though no-one else batted an eye at his coming — he didn’t even stay for a glass of water, holy or otherwise, he simply walked straight into the gents and then left immediately without uttering a word.
Wisely, I took this as my cue to leave this unusual, but strangely welcoming pub, and left to rejoin the chaos of the A2.
Sun In The Sands, Shooters Hill Road, Blackheath
Decor: ** (flock wallpaper and 33s nailed to the wall)
Drink: ** (An average offering)
Food: **** (Chicken shish with just enough chilli sauce)
Price: *** (£3.95 for the kebab , £3.60 a Kronenbourg and special crisps at 90p)
Atmosphere: ** (I’m sure it’s better on a Friday or Saturday)
Staff: **** (chatty and cheerful)