The faithful old Retreat on Sydney Road - home to plenty of sticky carpet, great pub grub, great live music, dodgy couches, and some equally dodgy clientèle. After working just around the corner for a while years ago, and religiously having a parma every friday, it's pretty hard to choose anything else.
On a recent visit, I succumbed again to the parma, with a side of chips and mushroom sauce. As per usual, it didn't disappoint - even if it has been exactly the same for about five years! Same crumb, sauce, smoky ham, and cheese. On this occasion the mushroom sauce was a touch on the runny side, but still had a good flavour.
I couldn't argue with the speedy effficient service, even though were were with a group of 30 or 40 people. The staff here are always chilled and laid back, but still manage to get the job done. The menu also features other pub-grub classics - burgers, steak sandwiches - all of which are also pretty damn good.
The best thing about this pub though - Coopers pale on tap, and the beer always tastes really good here for some reason. Maybe it's the vibe, or the memories from years ago. Whatever it is, it's the same every time I go.