02:46PM, Friday 20 May 2022
Ben Brannan, manager of The Green Man, Hurst
The pub with the symbol of rebirth in its name has undergone a transformation this spring with new owners, a new chef and a new menu.
Brothers Ben and James Brannan have taken over the running of The Green Man, in Hurst’s Hinton Road, with a mission to bring a new lease of life back into one of village’s much-loved locals.
“My brother and I were looking around for an opportunity and wanted to buy our own pub, but the hospitality industry was hit so hard during the global pandemic that it wasn’t the right time,” said James, who is ‘backroom management’ whilst younger sibling Ben concentrates on ‘day-to-day running’ of the business.
Upon securing the 17thcentury Brakspear owned pub the Brannans set about refurbishing the upstairs accommodation, replacing tired kitchen equipment and new outdoor play equipment will soon be installed.
“Being local, we know The Green Man well. When we went to view it we were certain that we could turn this great little pub back into something special.”
Revitalised menus and a new catering team led by head chef Mike Keating provide the final stages of the pub’s rebirth.
“Mike Keating is our new head chef and he’s fantastic. When we hired him we realised he was an old school friend so already the rapport there, which is great.
“So far he has done us proud and comments from customers have been: ‘best roast dinner ever’ – we can’t ask for more than that.
“Now it’s our job to help him go from strength to strength by building a team around him, starting with a new sous chef,” James explained.
The launch menu has favourite pub classics like fish and chips but with the added touch of ‘truffled crushed peas’; table sharers such as rosemary and garlic roasted camembert; bacon chops, lamb rumps and steaks on the grill plus desserts like sticky toffee pudding with Baileys and butterscotch sauce. New wines, beers and cocktails are due to come online to compliment.
However, The Green Man may have a new face but its foundations are still steeped in tradition. Its interiors are lined with Windsor Great Forest wood, once used to build ships that sailed from Portsmouth, and all the trademark features that once made it a welcoming pub for locals and visitors alike are still there.
“Families are welcome, dogs are welcome, the fire will be on when appropriate and our new staff team are here to give you a smile and excellent service,” James assured.
“We hope to be able to increase opening hours, too. For a while the pub was closed most of the days on Mondays and Tuesdays. Eventually we’re hoping to open fully across seven days a week.”
The Green Man’s official re-opening is May 21.
There will be a hot roast, live acoustic guitar music and a bouncy castle.