The Sportsman in Mogador seems to tick a lot of boxes for the regulars of the village as well as the dog-walkers, mountain-bikers and walkers of Walton Heath. What used to be a more rustic pub has been turned into something a little more gentile, but it has been careful to preserve the atmosphere of a welcoming pub for a pint. On our last visit, Young's, Harveys, Doom Bar and Otter Ale were all well kept and available. Cider aficionados have Aspalls on tap as well as the usual big-bottled stuff to drink with ice. There's a curry & quiz night every Monday which draws a good crowd and their kitchen dishes out a very good choice of 'pub classics', an exhaustive list of burgers (including a squid burger!) and some other dishes that stayed just on the right side of gastro for our liking. Many diners choose to eat in the smartly furnished anteroom, but we preferred the main bar area with its good choice of seating, relaxing ambience and general chatter of the locals. We often find that it's the small things that make a big difference and, for us, the small, hand-packed polythene bags of dog biscuits available behind the bar were a nice touch for the aforementioned dog-walkers. The adjacent Heath and scattering of picnic benches outside make this place great in summer, but the interior also boasts a real fire. Perfect for warming the cockles in winter.
Reviewed by fray_bentos
01 Jan 2012