“ Address: 362 Long Rd / Canvey Island / Essex SS8 0JU / UK / Telephone: 01268 690960 „
I am reviewing one of my local bars called Madsons wine bar.
This is situated :
Madsons is a wine bar that has been open for five years now. In 2003 William Ferguson (Bill) set up the wine bar on Canvey Island as there are not that many on the Island, mainly just big chains of pubs.
He aquired a place that used to be a bookmakers and had it redeveloped into his new wine bar. This is not a huge pub like the chains but a small local bar that people could get to know each other and make it a very friendly community bar to come to at the end of a hard days work or to join friends at the weekend.
Bill had set up Madsons in a row of a block of shops on one side of the street which is directly next to a flower shop, also two Chinese take aways, an Indian and a fish and chip shop if you get hungry !
There is another pub near enough next door to it called the King Canute which is part of a big chain, so Madsons has some friendly competition.
Bill wanted Madsons to be different from any other sort of pub or bar and this helped a lot with the customers who became regulars over the following years to come.
Bill had set out Madsons so when you come in there was a homely feeling with pictures on the wall, and a light coloured wood finish on the walls mixed with a red design. This is on the bottom half of the walls. The rest is a light coloured wallpaper which gives it a more open feel about the place.
There is a pool table just as you come inside and has plenty of room for three stand up tables with big bar stools.
There is a big black sofa in the middle for those who wish to relax in comfort which the cat who has made the pub his home from across the road normally goes to sleep on !
The bar is nice and compact so it doesn't take too much room from madsons and gives customers a lot more space to move around. This is all done in wood and gives off a good impression on how the design was made for Madsons.
There are two TV's in two corners with SKY on and a stereo behind the bar with a big selection of CD's. There is always something to taste everyones needs.
Outside there are three or four metal tables and chairs for you to sit in if the weather is nice, or for the smokers.
There is also free pool from Monday to Thursday which is a nice touch and has gone down well.
With the drinks there are a lot of choices and on tap we have Coors, Grolsch, Guinness, Worthingtons, Carling and two fridges at the back with more selections in them such as WKD, Smirnoff, Stella, Magners and many more choices.
Behind the bar we have different types of whisky, Bacardi, Rum, Vodka, and on the side there are the after shocks which do give a kick ! There are blue, red and the best of all Black ones.
The prices aren't bad down this way with a pint ranging from £2.10 to £2.60 all depending on what you want. Worthingtons is the cheapest and Grolsch the dearest.
With the bottles they are much the same price but as the Magners are bigger they cost a little more and are just over the £3 mark.
The spirits and aftershocks are about £2 and a double whisky is only about 50p dearer so you might as well have one of those !
Obviously there is a selection of red and white wines ranging from the £5 mark to more expensive ones, but this never seems to go over the £10 mark.
The crisps are cheap at 40p and have a selection of walkers varieties and also bacon and scampi fries along with good old pork scratchings.
There are some very dedicated bar staff here with Sharon and Maria being the main ones. These ladies work very hard and put in long hours. They are very friendly and like a good laugh with the regulars. This gives Madsons a very warm feeling to it as each time you go in you are noticed and get to be known by the staff and other regulars.
They are both there for you if you want a chat and always have time for everybody.
On my first visit here on Christmas Eve 2005 it was packed and as I went here with one of my friends we were greeted with everybody saying Happy Christmas to us even though we didn't know anybody there then. As we got to the bar Bill gave us a cheery smile and started chatting to us.
We had never felt that feeling before when going into a pub as everybody was so happy and cheerfull. So we decided to go back the following week and have been going there ever since.
My last trip there was Saturday evening and it's really good going there now and being known by the staff and other locals. There is always a game of pool going on and lots of jokes going around. It was good listing to some of the 80's tracks last night and a big cheer for Sharon as the trip switch went and she had to get the lights on again ! I guess you had to be there for that one though !
The cat came in for his usual visit and was made a fuss of all of which he enjoys though.
In the years of coming here though I have never found anybody to cause any trouble in the bar and this is very unusual these days and shows how people are here in this little community on Canvey Island.
On all of my trips anywhere I have been I have never found a bar as friendly or welcoming as this one. I would recommend any of you to come down this way and have a pint.
I end this review on a sad note though. Bill died on 12th March this year. I shall not go into details but he was the best landlord and a good friend to everybody in Madsons and he shall be missed. He has his picture in pride of place on the wall by the pool table as you come in.
This review is dedicated to the memory of William Stephen Ferguson (Bill)
© IanM73 2008