DOVER KENT ARCHIVES

Sort file:- Birchington, March, 2021.

Page Updated:- Sunday, 07 March, 2021.

PUB LIST PUBLIC HOUSES Paul Skelton

May 2015

(Name from)

Minnis Bar Bar and Brasserie

Open 2020+

The Parade

Birchington on Sea

https://whatpub.com/minnis-bay-bar-brasserie

Minnis Bay Bar 2019

Above photo 2019.

Minnis Bay Bar 2020

Above photo 2020.

Minnis Bay Bar 2020

Above photo 2020.

 

Overlooking Minnis Bay, where Barnes Wallace tested his famous bouncing bombs.

Taken over in spring 2015 by Shepherd Neame who have now extended the pub to give a larger bar area and it now has a balcony bar for private functions.

 

From the https://www.kentonline.co.uk By Secret Drinker, 21 February 2020.

Secret Drinker reviews the Minnis Bay in Birchington.

The sea view is simply stunning, okay the sun was shining and it was a crisp, bright winter lunchtime, but whatever the weather you won’t find many more impressive vistas.

Sitting alongside a warm fire on a high stool in the Minnis Bay in Birchington personally I’d be happy enough to simply sip a beer and watch the ships travel across the horizon.

But, I was also peckish and Secret Drinker fans are always encouraging me to report back on the quality of the nosh offered.

Shepherd Neame took this bar on about five years ago and did it up to produce the place you’ll find today. Proud barmaid Kelly clearly identifies with the pub and said: “We did it up”. So what exactly have they created?

Perfectly positioned on the coastline, there is a modern glass reception area leading to a bar on the left, which feels more like a pub, and to the right a large, spacious, well laid-out dining area that would grace any restaurant. Describing itself as a bar and a brasserie is probably the fairest, and most accurate, definition.

My natural instinct saw me turn left and find a table in the bar. I ordered an ‘open’ sandwich with rare roast beef and blue cheese on toasted sourdough with caramelised red onion, watercress mustard cream and pea shoots. And, for good measure, a bowl of chips.

The beef on the open sandwich was perfectly cooked and presented for me, just a little more blue cheese would have been great.

The sandwich, whilst not cheap, was tasty and the fantastically rare, and plentiful, beef an absolute delight. I’d have liked a little more cheese, but everything was perfectly prepared and presented. The chips too were just as I like them and could not be faulted.

This was all washed down with a pint of 4.8% Bear Island Pale Ale – it was a good golden colour with a decent fluffy white head and plenty of carbonation which meant it was fresh to the last mouthful, a decent offering from Sheps.

The fire behind the central entrance was a little warm, even for me, so I moved across to a table by the front window.

From here there was a great view of the sea and, with the scores of picnic tables out front and on the grass area at the side, it’s clear this place is a popular venue in warmer weather.

Minn is Bay Bar 2020

Sitting in the perfect position overlooking the beach, the Minnis Bay had a major makeover from Shepherd Neame five years ago.

However, on the way in I’d also spotted a glass panelled veranda upstairs and was keen to enjoy the panorama from here too – sadly, it was closed and, from what I could tell, the first floor function room was being used to interview potential new staff.

Back in the bar area a nice old couple who’d finished their drinks and were leaving kindly offered me their seats. There was a bit of a kerfuffle and a lot of bleeping as her disabled scooter got stuck in the door, but they made it out in the end.

Now, regular readers will know I’m more of a dog lover than most and keenly support pooches in pubs, but the meeting of small yappy dogs and the row they were now creating tested even my considerable patience.

Minnis Bar Bar inside 2020

Not at all ropey, the restaurant was well laid out and spacious for those diners who didn’t fancy the bar area.

Minnis Bay Bar inside 2020

The rescued/driftwood theme is maintained throughout.

A 10-year-old Yorkie called Lucy dutifully took her pills before a shih-tzu kicked off and a Jack Russell joined the melee – it started to feel more like the local dogs’ home. Fortunately a commanding lady took control of the situation and with one sharp rebuke of "Richard" quelled the noise (I’m not sure if she was speaking to her husband or the shih-tzu?)

The quality of the view has clearly allowed the Minnis Bay to price its menu accordingly, but I felt the warmth of the welcome and the quality of the food justified the hike.

And, although nothing original was retained in the wood-themed nautically makeover, I think the look works for this impressive beachfront bar brasserie.

Minnis Bay Bar gents 2020

The gents maintain the rescued/renovated wooden theme and were clean and well maintained.

The theme is continued in the gents, which were warm, clean and well maintained – though, like everywhere else, there were just a couple of minor signs it’s been a few years since the makeover – a few touch-ups will be needed soon.

I wasn’t particularly crazy about the pudding list, and I’d already stretched the exes, so I decided to head further along the coast to find myself an ice cream.

DECOR ★★★

Completely overhauled five years ago with plenty of nautical touches - an oar for a curtain pole, rope on the ceiling, and even a compass.

DRINK ★★★

The Bear Island is one of the better beers on offer from Shepherd Neame and the bar was well stocked.

price ★★

Not cheap, but the quality is good and it's not unusual to pay a little more with a sea view as good as this one. Sandwich and chips 12.45, the pint 4.70.

ATMOSPHERE ★★★

It was reasonably busy for a mid-week lunchtime with very nearly as many small dogs as there were diners.

STAFF ★★★★

Helpful and pleasant, everyone behind the bar and waiting tables was friendly and attentive.

 

LICENSEE LIST

 

If anyone should have any further information, or indeed any pictures or photographs of the above licensed premises, please email:-

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