IT WAS one of the very first pub and grubs that was featured in the scribblings of the City Slukker when he first started patrolling the Eastern Cape sluk-scape in 1996.
And it certainly hasn’t changed much looking at it from the outside when CS joined a bunch of pipers at the spot who proved to him that he was a mere rookie in the art of beer quaffing, froth blowing and wetting the whistle with a good Scotch.
Well, the small, unassuming and quaint old building that houses the Southender pub and grub in Webber Street, South End may not have changed its exterior much, but now under new ownership it’s a completely different story inside.
The sluk-den’s interior has been given a complete revamp and the results are most satisfying as the slukker and Slukkertary-General discovered last Saturday – as they obeyed instruction from a pair of demanding parched throats.
For starters, the bar counter has been moved right to the other side of the pozzie and is now much more user (and a little boozer) friendly.
It is spaciously laid out and more accessible than before when it was somewhat cramped up and tricky to get a sluk if some regulars had already invaded and taken occupation.
The old world soul of the pub has wisely been retained and so there are still fascinating photos and paintings of a Port Elizabeth and South End of yesteryear.
This touch of rich history is nicely juxtaposed against a battery of four flat screen TVs which are strategically placed all over the bar to offer you a view of sports action no matter where you’re standing or sitting.
Service is fast and friendly here – on the couple of occasions CS has popped in, his frosty has been served up within moments.
What’s more there’s a special on at the moment (last day today!) – a 500ml local draught for just 13 bucks. Now that’s thirst-inducing stuff! On the munchies side, great value continues.
It’s a simple, straightforward menu – as a genuine pub ‘n grub should offer – with burgers, pies, platters and toasted sarmies.
But with a burger and chips starting at just R25 and a mere couple of rand or so extra for more elaborate versions, and homemade venison or chicken pies with chips and gravy at only R20, your wallet will be smiling (and thicker).
This is a spot which has a great new fresh ambience while still keeping its heritage and old world pub charm and character firmly intact.