348 Port Road
(08) 8340 3087
So Adelaide Retrospect decided to go to the Bombay Bicycle Club for another shot at quiz night only to meet in the front bar where there was only standing room as the pub was absolutely packed and the chances of 10 of us getting a table was like the chances of all us sprouting wings and actually flying to Mumbai. So after awhile we decided to turn our frowns upside down and head to a different pub. The Lady Daly was on our list but she stops serving food at 8pm (that is if she is even open). So the Hope Inn was decided on, as the recent advertising had spiked some of our group’s interests, and logistically it made sense at the time.
Ross, who admitted he had been there a few years ago and that it was “Horrible”, was pleasantly surprised when we parked the cars. The outside of the pub is of traditional aesthetics and while the car park is a bit average it is due to the current constructions around it. Walking in the side entrance you come in to a small area that allows you to follow through to the dining room or to the sports bar. The dining room was very busy for 8pm on a Thursday night and full of all kinds of people, young and old. It was warm and dressed perfectly to pull tradition into 2012. The dining room moves through to the beer garden which is just a great surprise. The pub has taken advantage of good design and all areas are utilised to accommodate for as many patrons as possible. With quirky decorations such as coloured globes and garden gnomes it is of good humour too. And yes, there are gas heaters available. Go through the next door and you end up in the (insert descriptive profanities) pokies, not an area of joy for any of us, and then moving on again you end up in the sports bar. As far as sports bars go this one was rather good, there were plenty of tables and seats, plenty of bar space and televisions at every possible position. If you are keen for a bit of a flutter then you can do this here and also comfortably order bar food and dining room food right there while cheering as your friend’s dog comes last. As there were 10 of us we decided to sit in here.
Now, as we were rather ravenous we decided to just order food and drinks immediately and as we were able to order at either the sports bar or the dining room we got through this progress rather quickly. A couple of things about the menu; it is dirt-cheap and it is food that will fill a grown man. The schnitzels did not look massive but they were agreed to be tasty, if a bit average. A few of us got the roast of the day (beef) which was $14 and a serve like you get at Christmas (both Shell & Tris were thrilled as they actually supplied horse raddish with it). Jarred got the burger and while he asked for salad and no chips, he still got chips and extra salad which he ‘reluctantly’ ate. When asked if he would return to the Hope Inn he said, “For that burger, shit yes!” The food came out to us in good time and the table was silent in it’s satisfaction of actually obtaining some food. The dessert menu looked delicious, as do all dessert menus, but we all refrained this time.
The drinks menu is short on wine but the choices are well known and just so cheap, and boy, they can pour a glass. $7 for a glass of Geisen Sauvignon Blanc is a good couple of dollars cheaper than what you will pay elsewhere (and when you are drinking a few glasses those dollars do add up). The beer and cider was reasonable with many tap options and bottled options too. The reason for the cheap drinks and food was suggested that it is because the pub is owned by Coles but if it is not an ethical problem for you then we recommend you take advantage of the cheap prices.
All in all the staff were very friendly and made us feel like we were not on Port Road but out in the country somewhere and the other patrons seemed relaxed and well-spirited, look out for the local who calls himself ‘Cowboy’ for a friendly chat about local grocery prices. As Tris stated, “Good food, good service. Renovated nicely without losing its original character and charm but still a standard pub-vibe and pub-menu”. Rob and Carrie both felt that it had no atmosphere although we are told that it occasionally has a live band in the front bar, if that is the kind of atmosphere you are after. It was agreed by all though that no matter the pub these places are always good when after cheap eats and drinks and good company.
The Hope Inn gets 6 out 10 Gnomes.