Let me clarify one thing, I am not a High Street kind of bloke.
I find their assortment of pound shops, pawnbrokers and bookmakers too much for my sensitive nature, and don’t get me started on the chavs, neanderthals and ne’er-do-wells who parade up and down these hellholes in their baggy branded sportswear.
After five minutes on Sutton High Street I’d had enough and craved calmer surroundings. The Little Windsor instantly sprung to mind.
It’s a backstreet boozer which looks like a house, although the houses I know don’t have copious amounts of real ale on tap, a cracking beer garden and a swinging sign of Windsor Castle hanging above their entrance.
Once through its doors I bought a much-needed pint of Seafarers (3.6%) and sat down for an eagerly anticipated first swig of ale.
I sighed in satisfaction and glanced up to notice that skiing from Finland was on the TV. Little did I know it was a sign of things to come as my afternoon was about to go rapidly downhill.
Quiet pint takes turn for the worse
Within seconds, the pub was taken over by a bunch of blokes who could have made up a Vinnie Jones ID parade. They must have escaped from the High Street.
Each Vinnie was wearing a black leather jacket, jeans and bright white trainers while proudly displaying various degrees of baldness. When they sat down next to each other they looked like a human pink-to-beige colour palette.
Dean Martin’s enchanting version of That’s Amore was soon drowned out by blokey banter about the afternoon’s big game, Fulham v Chelsea which was just about to replace the skiing on the box.
I supped up and left in double-quick time but not before I gave my seat up to a lager-swilling Chelsea fan who’s skin reminded me of my mum’s crumply old leather purse.
I wished his team well for the match but I didn’t mean a word of it. I wanted Fulham to win.
Homely pub with great beer garden
My quiet afternoon may have been gatecrashed by the bald brigade but it was obviously good business for the Little Windsor.
This pleasant pub looks after its customers well, with good service and great ales all within it’s cosy, homely confines.
It’s a genuine, friendly and welcoming backstreet boozer, just far enough away from the madding crowd for you to actually believe you might be somewhere else other than Sutton.
If you happen to stumble across this boozer in good weather then it’s worth bearing in mind it has a great beer garden where you can sit and sup to the distant din of police cars zooming by.
Remember how entranced you’d be as a kid when an emergency vehicle whizzed past? Yeah well, the novelty has worn off now, hasn’t it.
I love this boozer and would recommend it to anyone after a quiet drink, I clearly caught at the wrong moment.
It’s a lesson learnt. Don’t go for a quiet pint when the football’s on, especially if Chelsea are playing.
THE INNSPECTRE’S SUMMARY
ADDRESS: The Little Windsor, 13 Greyhound Road, Sutton SM1 4BY
DECOR:*** Neat and tidy but lacking in a bit of character.
ATMOSPHERE: *** Lively, but on this occasion, just too blokey. I have been to this boozer on a few occasions and generally speaking, the atmosphere is excellent, with a good mix of punters.
STAFF: **** Smiley, polite and friendly.
DRINK: *** Good array of Fullers beers such as London Pride and ESB, plus two guest ales.
PRICE: *** £3.30 for Seafarers is OK.
ANY OTHER BUSINESS: Fuller’s donates £5 for each barrel sold to Seafarers UK, a leading maritime charity. I like this beer, it’s light, refreshing and certainly hits the spot on a hot, sunny day.