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Harrow, Steep

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user reviews of the Harrow, Steep

please note - reviews on this site are purely the opinion of site visitors, so don't take them too seriously.

Has always been a superb quintessential English country pub with everything just right (except the opening hours so check first). Whether summer in the lovely garden or winter in the cosy two separate rooms it feels great. The ale straight from the cask and although the variety isn't great the quality of the two small brewery beers was excellent. The food portions are large and delicious.
Steamer1 - 1 Oct 2013 10:12
This was all that I was hoping for, a real old country gem. The public bar is small and intimate, if you don't want to talk to people, don't go there; but if you want to taste a proper old-fashioned pub atmosphere, it's a must visit. And the pea and ham soup is the best I have ever tasted. Oh yes and the beer's not bad either, straight from the barrel of course.
happy_wanderer - 8 Sep 2013 19:53
finally managed to visit this pub as its 50 miles away and don't usually get down to this part of the A3 and the wait was worth it. A jewel of a find. Beautiful location, fantastic pub, two beers tried were in excellent condition and correct temperature. Food does appear a little expensive for simple fare - but that said, they were delicious and portions very generous. We tried the Scotch egg ploughmans - comes with a real hunk of bread, lots of salad and the scotch egg was lovely. The bacon, cheese & onion flan was fantastic and a really large piece. Will have to definitely come again - will be really convenie nt if my son does end up at Southampton Uni then i can pop-in on all trips to & from!
miked_bandit - 23 Aug 2013 18:07
5 lads (Last of the Summer Wine type) from Berkshire on a day out to visit a few pubs in North Hampshire, starting with The Harrow. Arrived at 12.00 (opening time), left at 2.30 (closing time). Visits to other pubs planned for that lunchtime, cancelled. What an excellent find. Warm welcome and excellent conversation with another visiting couple but particularly with Landlady Claire and her assistant Amanda. Local old boy, Davey, was a fund of local knowledge and entertained us with a couple of songs. The two beers on tap in excellent condition. Lunch, although on the face of it a tad expensive, was of excellent quality. We will return.
jim2 - 14 Mar 2013 19:32
I have the opportunity to visit for one of the Stonor CC cricket matches in July each year and after the journey from London this is the first port of call!

From a summertime perspective and with the sun shining, quite simply, this is an unmissable venue to go to. It is what I visualise a proper English country pub should be but catches you unawares as you enter because you are so used to what we now have to, "experience".

The Harrow has low ceilings, two very small bars, the loos are outside and there is a delightful beer garden and it is such a hidden away location you do have to make quite an effort to find it! This does mean the staff are unlikely to take kindly to large numbers turning up and stocks of food are limited - I managed to get the penultimate Scotch Egg at 20 minutes after opening time - so you need to accept at this place you get what you get.

On a 75F day... I discovered the local Perry...
NLBS - 24 Jul 2012 13:15
I like this pub.
A quiet oasis, a chance to sit, enjoy great beer and talk.
Signalman - 2 Jul 2012 15:03
We visited last weekend, and the young female behind the bar was quite off hand with us.
She couldn't pull a pint & then lost her temper barged past us, saying she was going to get help ! Customer service not one of her skills it would seem.
Shame as it spoilt our experience, the beer was just ok, after she shook the barrel, with no real choice of either cider or perry.
The 2 beers on, were both local, but no choice of wines on offer.
Small and could do with a good clean !

ladiesview - 29 Jun 2012 13:49
Had my first daytime visit to this pub recently & enjoyed excellently kept beer & a huge plate of very tasty soup with what appeared to be half a loaf of bread. The locals were very friendly & joined us in their conversation (being so small it is probably hard not to!)
SamRich - 14 Jun 2012 11:42
I'm often in this excellent country pub, and I'm a Camra member, does that make me smelly, Sickslinger?

littlecon - 20 Nov 2011 17:15
If you live anywhere withing reach of the Harrow and you don't manage to get there just once in your lifetime, your life will be the poorer for it. Whether it's taking in the glories of the rambling garden in summer or sitting on a log in the inglenook in winter you'll find every trip to the Harrow a very special experience. The beer (last visit it was Hophead and the one before Swift One) and cider drop straight from the cask behind the bar, the service is jolly and relaxed and, if you see the generosity of the food servings, your eyes will pop out. I spent £15 on a ham salad and got the best value for money I've yet to get in a pub. It came on a meat carving dish, half of which was covered with home-cooked ham and the other with a spectacular salad. Hot, crusty bread and butter came seperately and I struggled to finish. And if the landlady refuses to bow and scrape to a bunch of smelly CAMRA members on their one and only trip to the pub well, that just makes the Harrow a better place, doesn't it?
slickslinger - 20 Nov 2011 07:18
Excellent unspoilt two-bar local seemingly untouched by time. Friendly locals and good beer. Why aren't all pubs like this?
simontheeditor - 28 May 2011 09:06
The Harrow is a wonderful old-fashioned pub that rightly deserves to be on the list of the best in England. Two bars, with separate access from outside, service through a small hatch in one, and a tiny bar in the other. Excellent beers, very well kept and served straight from the barrel. A joy to sit outside in the summer despite being only a stone's throw from the busy A3, which strangely does not impinge on the atmosphere of the place. Toilets are old and a little shabby, and on the other side of the road, just as they should be, even if it means a quick dash on a wild winter's night!...Absolutley a must visit pub by anyone's standards.
oxenhillshaw - 26 Apr 2010 16:56
I visited the Harrow on Easter Monday this year. Having heard great reviews I eagerly awaited a lovely lunch. However, having asked for 2 home made flans with salad, we were told they were sold out. We then asked for 2 cheese ploughmans priced at £5.60 each. When they arrived we were most dissapointed as what was on the plate was a lettuce leaf, some slices of cucumber, 1 soggy tomato, butter cheese and large hunks of bread. No onions (surely the main ingrediant of a ploughmans!) and no dressing for the tiny bit of salad. To add insult to injury, we watched as 2 quiches came out filled with all sorts of salad & beetroot, coleslaw etc. My point is that if the ploughmans were described as "bread and cheese" and was priced accordingly, ie £3.25, we would not have been dissapointed. But to pay £5.60 for what was on our plates was frankly a rip off. I think the reviews may have gone to the landladies heads so they now feel they can go against the Trade Descriptions act and get away with it! Will not be using this pub again!
ANDYLOL - 8 Apr 2010 10:36
Perhaps, but they knew full well in advance we were coming - if they didn't want the group there, they could have said. So I stand by my comment.
Quinno - 12 Aug 2009 20:30
My husband brought me here for my birthday and it was indeed a treat! What an absolute gem this place is. There can't be many pubs with baskets of tiny but incredibly sweet plums on the table with a sign saying "Eat the plums." If you don't like plums there are walnuts. The fresh flowers on the tables - and on sale at the door - come from the garden at the back. The food is superb, and comes in enormous helpings. I would have liked the treacle tart but after my bacon, egg and cheese flan, and my husband's generous ham ploughman's there simply wasn't room for another crumb.

But what about the beer? Well, there were two on the day we went, both excellently kept. The Ringwood I had was definitely a 4 on the CAMRA scale.

Don't miss reading the pub's own paper, The Harrowing Times.

I note that one visitor has taken against the lady who served him. Being a CAMRA member myself, I'm afraid I can guess the attitude that possibly irritated her. Any fool can see that in a pub this tiny, a large and probably noisy group turning up is not going to be the most welcome sight of the day. Anyone who thinks this pub should be leaping to grasp "business opportunities" isn't very sharp. We arrived at just before 12.30 and the garden was full by 1.00 pm. The whole joy of its atmosphere is that it is a home from home for families, not chavs, lager-drinkers or even a CAMRA group out on a pub crawl. It's about as far from Wetherspoons as you possibly imagine. This has just made its way into my very short list of England's top pubs.
Pompeybelle - 12 Aug 2009 19:26
Still one of the best pubs in the South of England
michael_winnah - 21 Jul 2009 14:10
A step back in time. Great beer served from hatches. The mandatory local sat in the corner grumbling to no one in particular. No music, microwave or electronic till, it does have electicity though. The mens loos....partly unroofed, oh the delights of having the sun on your back and watching the world go by..........Make an effort to find this pub and enjoy.
Duckstein - 11 Apr 2009 09:40
As good as the other reviews suggest - excellent beers direct from the wooden barrel, they don't even have anything as new fangled as an electronic till. A colleague mentioned that they can get around fifty people into the two (small) rooms when they hold their charity quiz nights - which are good fun and must be a great way of meeting people.....
Beer_Hound - 16 Jan 2009 17:09
As good as it always has been today. They should probably give outspoons wit hthe soup, it's so thick!
HenPen - 12 Jun 2008 21:43
Splendidly traditional, long-established family run 16th Century rural pub in the Hampshire hills a mile or so from Petersfield.

This pub is probably as far removed from your chav-infested identikit high street pub as you can get nowadays.

It's listed in CAMRA's National Inventory of Unspoilt Interiors and there is much to admire in the two separate rooms, each with their own distinctive character.

Needless to say, there's none of the usual pub accompaniments, such as slot machines, TV's etc.

For the nostalgia buffs, there's also outside toilets on the other side of the lane.

Beer is served in jugs direct from the barrel - on my recent visit, there were Ringwood Best and a local micro.

I was pleased to be able to add to my growing collection of pub postcards by paying £ 1 to charity for a card showing the splendid public bar interior.

The pub is cut off from Petersfield by the A3 and it takes a bit of finding. Print out a map from the web site to make it easier.

To conclude, do make the effort to find this pub - you will be well rewarded
JohnBonser - 6 Jun 2008 16:59
Excellent pub, excellent food, and above all excellent toilets!
mhanley - 17 Oct 2007 16:39
What a gorgeous pub - sadly there are very few left like this - an absolute pleasure which should have a preservation order slapped on it. Not easy to find but worth every turn. Excellent Cheriton & Ringmer Ales from the barrel - bowls of walnuts & hazelnuts on the table with nutcrackers for the customers to help themselves and a very fiendly barmaid. Pubs really don't come any better than this. Can't wait to return.
zeitlin - 11 Jun 2007 00:15
Unchanged since the Liberals last tasted power. Beer strictly from the barrel, pea and ham soup that your spoon will stand up in and ye treacle tarte of Olde Englande. Who could wish for more? In its own way, perfect. Downside: tiny, as others have correctly observed, welcome can be a bit chilly, service can be flaky (work experience from Bedales up the road maybe?), toilets would also have been recognised by Lloyd George. This is nitpicking however; in truth it's a great characterful pub.
myPetersfield - 26 Apr 2007 23:05
I’m afraid I will have to break ranks here and say that on our visit at the beginning of March, this place sucked.

The landlady was a right mardy cow, and appeared to see our group of thirsty (but thoroughly friendly) CAMRA drinkers as some sort of irritating nuisance, rather than a business opportunity (unlike the super landlady at the Three Moles, who worked the pumps like a Las Vegas gambling addict to keep us happy). In here, lots of huffing and puffing, despite taking more in that 30 minutes through the barrel than she would for the rest of the day. And she appeared to take particular exception to be asked for the actual names of the beers on dispense, rather than just the brewery name! I still have no idea what the Oakley brewery beer I drank was. And whilst OK, neither was particularly great.

As an actual pub, this place has many plus points – the interior, a real fire, comedy outside lavs, thick handled glasses…but the service with a scowl negates that, cos it lives on in your mind long after the beer has passed through the system. We were happy to go.
Quinno - 7 Apr 2007 15:56
Excellent pub. Beers came straight from the barrel and locals were extremely friendly.
downender - 16 Feb 2007 10:58
Great Pub with superb food and atmosphere. Only pub I know where you have to cross the road to go to the Loo!
However, I hate to tell you but it hasn't been in Steep for over forty years, even though the sign says it is. A result of boundry changes in, I think, 1964. That doesn't alter the fact that it's well worth a visit even if 'Uncle Jack' isn't there any longer and it's now in SHEET.
anonymous - 13 Jan 2007 20:07
sorry that should have been" great beers, cider and fantastic food"!!!
martyjc - 13 Aug 2006 11:56
my favourite pub . great beers , cidertastic food.
If you have a sweet tooth and if its on , have the treacle tart. But get there early on summer weekend lunchtimes as the garden can fill up by 12:30.
martyjc - 13 Aug 2006 11:55
This is a superb pub. It's small, the kitchen's small and the menu's small - but what food is produced is FRESH and delicious. Beware ordering soup and a main course. The soup is a meal in itself!!

Beers served straight from the barrel usually iclude Ringwood Best and Cheriton Pots.

A bit hard to find but if you like real English traditional pubs it's worth the effort.
SisterMoon - 17 Feb 2006 15:29
Great olde pub. Barrel ales, home made food (not a full varied menu). Try the ploughmans. 2 smallish bars make for cosy winter drinks. Summer outside is a pleasure.
alen - 4 Jan 2006 18:26
This is a fantastic pub - brilliant beer and food, lovely and warm in winter, fantastic service. Lovely open fire complete with chestnuts provided to roast on those cold winter evenings!
Danielle Hull - 3 Sep 2004 22:00

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