Gosport bar to reopen with new landlords -and plans for a South African grill
A BAR and restaurant in Gosport is to reopen under new management following a major refurbishment this month – with plans to bring a taste of South Africa to the south coast.
Alex and Monique Rogers have taken over as tenanted landlords of the Ei-owned pub in Broadsands Drive.
The bar and restaurant been shut for the last three weeks to undergo a refurbishment, including new fittings and a new bar layout – with the incoming landlords hoping to create a more family-friendly atmosphere, according to Alex.
The 42-year-old said: ‘We wanted to drastically change the pubs layout and feel – but it hasn’t cost us a fortune.
‘The old layout was the old style two bar layout, but we have taken out the dividing wall so its a free-flowing, relaxing venue.
‘We hope it’s a chic drinking and dining experience.’
The pub plans to offer pub classics, before honouring Monique’s South African roots by installing a traditional braai – a type of BBQ that often uses wood for fuel.
Alex said: ‘We’re completely independent when it comes to food.
‘We’re having to launch with a very conservative menu, and we’re looking to get another round of investment to create an outdoor South African braai.
‘We want to focus on specialities from the grill – steaks, ribs, grilled chicken.
‘We have an idea of the garden space and how it could look.’
The Seahorse is the first licensed venue the couple have managed, and Alex is hoping that is will prove to be ‘a little less dangerous’ than his former profession as a Royal Navy bomb and mine disposal expert.
The dad-of-two said: ‘I served for eight years, and I was an offshore diver for many years.
‘Me and Monique both wanted to do something where we could be at home at home with the kids, and run the pub as a kind of ma-and-pa business.
‘We were looking to buy the pub four years ago but the the time wasn’t right.
‘With Covid, we did think, ‘is now the right to be doing this?’ But we’re confident – and if we can make it work now, we can make it work any time.’
The Seahorse will open at 12pm on Friday.