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Carlisle Arms, Soho

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user reviews of the Carlisle Arms, Soho

please note - reviews on this site are purely the opinion of site visitors, so don't take them too seriously.

I want to like this pub more than I do - good music, and not just 80s rock that the paraphernalia on the walls suggests. They played The Buzzcocks, Nirvana and "Sex and Candy", which I haven't heard for years. But other than the music it's pretty limited without much good to say about it.
Foghorn1 - 3 Nov 2014 21:03
Small, basic one-roomed pub to the north-eastern edge of Soho, just shy of the FA’s former stamping ground. Quiet for a Saturday afternoon. Music selection was a boon although a music channel showing videos concurrently (albeit on mute), leant a slightly confusing, if pointless air. Pop art frames of Sid Vicious, Christopher Walken and Ziggy Stardust-era David Bowie gave a contemporary feel to the place but didn’t detract from the ‘standard London boozer’ look. The Young’s London Gold was on the palatable side and was nice to see a player from the old county with Old Hooky on tap keeping that and the Pride company.
Komakino - 6 May 2014 14:39
Great little pub. Serving Pride and Bombardier when I visited. Good, friendly service and far less busy than its neighbours.
The_Prof - 13 Jun 2012 12:40
Went here for a pint early (7pm) this evening (Saturday) while waiting to meet someone for a nearby comedy gig. Much less busy than the nearby Dog & Duck (which I could see from my spot leaning on the ledge outside), so I was served quickly. Only draught ale available was London Pride, which was a pretty good pint. A dj was playing old rock 'n roll, which created a nice and unexpected atmosphere. Definitely a good alternative to the busier boozers nearby. More real ales would improve its rating from me.
vanillarreal - 21 May 2011 23:44
Nice basic pub reasonable beer good for a relatively quiet pint in busy soho
willothewisp - 13 Mar 2010 09:29
Forgo to mention that there is also some great original art on the walls featuring the likes of Joe Strummer and Keith Richards which I believe is for sale, and I may have to hit the credit card for the Keef one at some point.
aimprod - 3 Nov 2009 12:51
Great little boozer with a good pint of Pride, well worth a visit for decent pint and a great selection of music playing in the background.
aimprod - 3 Nov 2009 00:52
Tucked away on Bateman Street this is a pub that you are more likely to stumble across than seek out but once you have you will have found a real gem. If you are looking for a pub to catch up with a friend or to watch the footy (ESPN as well as SKY) in Soho without having to fight your way to the bar against a crashing dance sound track then this is the place for you. It's everything a pub should be when so few are these days.

Nice staff and a good selection of beer, I'll defo be back when I'm in that neck of the woods.


niallythere - 16 Oct 2009 11:22
Stumbled upon this little gem the other night while out in soho with my friends. Small pub tucked away but the service and atmosphere were top notch. Reasonable prices for soho and one of the few proper pubs left in the area. We had a great night and will be back when we are in soho. Loved it.
polly101 - 2 Oct 2009 21:59
When I wrote 'publican' I meant 'patron'.
telos - 17 Sep 2009 12:14
Despicably rude staff. The idea that publicans should be allowed a reasonable amount of time (~20 minutes) to finish the drinks they have just paid for seemed completely alien to the tetchy barwoman, especially given it was a quiet Wednesday evening. A number of customers stayed on after my friends and I left, so presumably she was eager to start a lock-in. She had zero manners and my friend's attempts to reason with her fell on deaf ears. Add to that overpriced drinks (3.75 for a small bottle of Leffe!) and the dispensation of horrid plastic beakers as closing time approached and they should rightfully lose custom. Don't go there.
telos - 17 Sep 2009 12:07
Went to this pub with a group of 5 friends at 10pm. Pub pretty empty and got a table inside easily enough.

Not impressed from the start. I ordered a bitter and was given a lager. Ordinarily a forgivable mistake but unfortunately transpired to be symptomatic.

We were sold a second round at 10:59. I thought it was a bit odd to be given plastic glasses this time around, I can understand in Soho that they want to keep glass off the street but if you've just been sold a drink you expect to have time to drink it inside. If I don't finish in a reasonable drinking up time I have no problem in being offered a plastic glass as I leave. In the event, they didn't give us reasonable drinking up time. At 11:06 we were told to leave and drink outside. We pointed out politely that this was unreasonable and in the event we were allowed to stay but only at the expense of constant rude remarks from the bar staff - "don't throw the book at me." etc. Don't mind being asked to leave at 11:06 but not if I've been sold 5 drinks 8 minutes earlier.

We were told if we didn't like it we didn't have to come back. We won't.
wjawjawjawjawja - 17 Sep 2009 12:04
Unlike many pubs in Soho the Carlisle appears bigger than it really i. The widish street front conceals a single room bar that is wider than deep. Although there is bench style seating around the wall on the right hand side of the door the left side lacks much seating other than a few high tables.

As there were about 6 people in there on my visit the lack of seating didn't really matter much. Beer was fine and I'd probably go back here depending on how convenient it was to whoever I was meeting.
murgatroyd - 21 Jun 2009 23:07
one of the better pubs in Soho nice pint of Pride - just a simple nice pub -
theglade - 25 Apr 2009 13:15
Wasn't expecting much, and only two real ales on (Greene King IPA and London Pride), but we found it a bit more of a 'local' than any of the four Soho pubs we had tried earlier in the evening. Not great, but certainly one of the better offerings in the area.
rpadam - 24 Apr 2009 23:33
Some really decent people behind the bar -matched by a right set of twonks who tend to stand at the right end of the the bar....don't bother trying to communicate with these pondlife-they're algae brain is pre Flintstone....
EdgarBriggsMI5 - 1 Feb 2009 20:12
A genuinly nice boozer. Tucked away down Bateman Street, its a really nice place to get out of the Summer Heat. Also its location make it a great meeting point. Two screens for sport and so they usually put one football match on one screen and cone on another. Can't really get lost in there as it is only one room. if it has any fault, I've got to say that it doesnt hqave the great selection of bitters and the prices arnt exactly wallet friendly but it is definatly worth a visit eacpecially during Sohosd gay prides day as you get a great mix of the wierd and the wonderful
DOGBOTTLE - 29 Dec 2008 13:47
Not closed - one of the few proper pubs left in Soho - nothing trendy, nice place for a quiet evening pint
AdnamsHead - 21 Jan 2008 19:24
Re-opened much as before..
Clivers - 31 Jul 2007 20:09
[CLOSED]

M&B sold the pub and it closed its doors last week in Feb. The end of a very long era. No firm news about any possible reincarnation, rumours of restaurants, wine bars and even flats abound. The wake saw regulars who could recall every landlord / lady since around 1975, not bad loyalty for the centre of soho. Sorely missed.


beaucoup_fish - 8 Mar 2007 13:06
In the summer, when you can stand outside on Bateman Street, I'd give this pub a 7 out of 10. The rest of the year, when it's too cold or wet to be outside, I'd avoid it - purely because it's too small. 6/10.
jimmythefish - 11 Dec 2006 18:18
One of the best pubs in Soho to catch up with people and hear yourself speak. Good bar service, good for the football if you get in early, lively and excellent for hanging around outside getting drunk on a nice evening.
tubthumper66 - 23 Sep 2006 10:46
Top notch, quality beer, great prices
danspack - 25 Aug 2006 10:08
A reasonable pub - ideal for a swift couple of pints if you want to check the football scores or take a break from Oxford St shopping. Bateman St also boasts the 'Dog and Duck' & 'The Crown and 2 Chairman', pretty similar set-ups which are all handy if you're going to a gig at Ronnie Scotts or The Astoria.
LondonWolf - 10 Feb 2006 09:45
A basic no thrills, single room pub that looks quite attractive from the outside but is less appealing inside. Geared mainly towards to local workers, it can get a bit cramped around the bar and quite smoky when busy. Good prompt bar service. 3 pumps for Real Ale but only 1 (Speckled Hen) was on when I was there. TVs for sport but generally I found the Carlisle Arms to be a friendly but rather plain, unadventurous and featureless pub. There are far more interesting pubs in the area.
RogerB - 27 Jan 2006 16:17
Not a bad old-fashioned local style pub that seems strangely lost and cut adrift amidst all the trendy pubs/clubs/bars in Soho. Won't have too big an impact on your wallet, but is perhaps best described as strictly for tradionalists. Not bad for the footie and most of the time it's not too crowded.
Mr.Monkfish - 21 Oct 2005 10:43
A great pub for a lunchtime pint with a useful outside ledge for summer afternoons, compared with prices elsewhere in Soho this is a liquid lunch on a budget, plus it does not serve food so hopefully we can all carry on smoking here, keep up the good work and low prices!
Tedward - 26 Aug 2005 12:46
Small but friendly with decently priced beers and Sky sports to watch. The suits are a good laugh too. Useful, after shopping in Oxford Street, for a quiet pint.
Cody - 11 Jul 2004 22:44

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