After reserving a table outside, we were looking forward to the alfresco roast dining experience ahead of us on a particularly lazy Sunday. Greeted by two friendly bar staff, we were told options were fairly limited… always a good sign of a successful day’s business. Although they did still have the roast English Beef Sirloin and Corn-fed Chicken left, their full menu also offers Mixed Bean and Nut Cutlet with vegetarian gravy and a variety of snacks, shares and sandwiches alongside the roasts if you just fancy a bite. Lucky for us the beef and chicken was just the ticket for lining our stomachs after a day drinking out in the sunshine.
Ordering a pint of Thatchers ‘Cheddar Valley’ cider to quench our thirst, this uniquely refreshing cider has an interesting hazy orange colour. Fermented and matured in oak vats for a fuller flavour, I was told it is not one for the faint hearted at over 6% in strength. We also chose a pint of the Krusovice, which has a strong golden colour and pleasant bitter hop taste, sweet bodied with a compact foam… It was just the ticket.
Now as most locals will know, Brighton has a massive roast-loving fan club. Every one of us at some point in time will have slithered into the pub to meet friends, only to cringe and laugh about the previous night’s antics over a hearty great plate of roasted meats and veg. It’s part of our culture… and also is the set thing most of us will religiously do on God’s day of rest. We’ve all experienced amazing roasts, bad ones… and average ones. Most places shift depending on who’s running the kitchen, so no one can really rest of their laurels as being at the top of their game. In Brighton the competition is FIERCE.
When the plates of food arrived, the beef was a delicious cut of good quality meat, tasty and pink… just how we like it. The chicken was nicely roasted, moist inside and with the perfect amount of crispy well-seasoned skin. The potatoes seemed fresh from the oven; soft inside, crunchy on the outside and a generous portion too. The gravy was exceptionally tasty, rich and flavoursome – just the right consistency and colour.
All plates were adorned with a Yorkshire pud – a rarity these days – and quite an interesting selection of vegetables, ranging from perfectly roasted butternut squash to cauliflower cheese. The cauliflower cheese was such a treat!
So impressed with our mains, it would’ve been rude to miss out on dessert… Although outrageously full, we decided to share a Banoffee Pie (£5). Possibly not the lightest of options, it came out moments later smothered in cream on a bed of crunchy buttery biscuits, with caramel and banana slices. Mmmm…Just Mmm. This was demolished in a matter of seconds.
In our eyes the food is well priced (£9.50 – £12) for the quality and is perfectly located being in the centre of town. The Victory is definitely up there for being one of the best roast pubs in town. Just wait until the winter months kick in too, you will get an even bigger choice of roasts thoughtfully designed to warm those chilly bones. Try it…You won’t be disappointed.
By Bee Adamic