THE quintessential pub lunch should be viewed as a kind of hallowed (but also wickedly wet) ceremony in any slukker's deliberations when pondering on where to grab a bite and a beer.
It is something that is often just a mediocre, greasy flash in the pan affair washed down with a quick pint, or it can be a splendidly tailored tipple and nibble and enjoyed to the optimum if all its ingredients are just right.
And the City Slukker is certainly not just talking about the quaffing of the chilled frosty and tucking into something simple but smartly hearty, but all the features that go into making a good bar meal experience.
The company you're in, the ambience, the conversation – they all have a pivotal role to play in ensuring that the fare and the froth are afforded the best possible accompaniments.
This was certainly the case when CS and some fellow judges were fortunate enough to be on the panel who, for several years in a row, decided which was the "best pub with the grub" in Nelson Mandela Bay.
It was amazing how innovative and enthusiastic many publicans soon became over the potential of the humble pub lunch. Maintaining the simplicity, but adding a splattering of imagination to their dishes.
The slukker has been reminded of this by discovering what must be the best pub meal deal in town.
The slukker will get to that fresh touch approach just now, but at the moment at Zest Urban Cafe in Heugh Road, Walmer, you can land a 500ml Castle draught for – wait for it – just 10 bucks from 10am to 7pm.
Now there's a half-litre draught price you haven't seen in a while.
And to add to that special, on the munchies side of things, there's a standard burger and chips for R25 between the same hours of the day.
Let's face it. There are not many – if any – pozzies these days when you can order a substantial pub meal including a good-sized sluk for just R35. Unless of course you're in a hot Karoo dorpie where time – and the local bar menu – has stood still.
At Zest though, you get the added bonus of a terrific wrap around pub which spills out onto an exterior chill-out area so half of it is inside – where there's also ample seating with snazzy decor and a fresh, airy atmosphere – and the other half outside, catering for the verandah patrons.
And if you're looking for something more extravagant, there's an extensive culinary catalogue to peruse.
Just on the burger front though, there's the Something Different option (R45) which is topped with a creamy avocado and peppadew mayonnaise, while the appropriately named Larney Burger (R46) is crowned with brie and drizzled in a cranberry sauce. Yummy!
And you thought burgers had become boring.
Service is great, the slukker's glass was sparkling and the ablutions here are top notch.
CS can't wait to get back.