YOU know when your parents come to visit and you want a nice, safe pub to take them to - one that makes you seem more mature and well-to-do than you are? Well, this is it.

Perhaps you have a semi-formal meeting, you’re catching up with more successful friends or, heaven forbid, trying to impress a lady (second date, not first) – then you’ll want to bring them to the Hare and Billet.

But I wouldn’t make it my local. It’s a bit too try-hard, a bit too perfect and I’m a simple man.
It feels awful writing that because I think I liked everything about this place. It just didn’t feel right.

Let’s start with the setting: bang on the heath, opposite a pretty pond in one of the most idyllic settings in London.

Inside is gorgeous with lots of weathered wood, classy vintage tables and seating, mixed levels, high ceilings, plenty of light.

Seldom will you see such a range of drinks either. I counted 14 different beers, ciders and lagers on tap. Some were so fresh and unique they only have a piece of marker pen-stained card to identify them.

I had a pint of Hare Ale (£3.70), specially brewed for the pub and served in a proper pint pot, and my driver had a couple of homemade lemonades (£1.65 each). Both were great and served by smiling, well-heeled youngsters wearing aprons.

We didn’t eat, but the menu looked nice, if a bit fussy with grub like Aubergine soup served with Harissa Yoghurt. Where’s the scampi? What about the bangers?

We sat and drank on a sunny afternoon, surrounded by a handful of smart folk a little more sophisticated than us. It was a bit uneasy and flat.

The Hare and Billet, Hare and Billet Road, Blackheath

How it rated:

Decor: Like a pub showroom *****

Drink: Incredible variety *****

Price: Ok, given the venue and location ***

Atmosphere: Not for me **

Staff: A cut above ****