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Penderel's Oak, Holborn

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user reviews of the Penderel's Oak, Holborn

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

Reasonable spoons nestling close to the legal district of Lincolns Inn. The pub pays homage to the legal tradition of the area by having bookshelves lined with legal textbooks and directories such as the slightly outdated Legal 500 2007 edition. Now I am sure this is just for show as I cannot imagine that too many high flying barristers would be preparing a big case sitting there next to the proletariat enjoying the beer and a burger deal.

Pub itself is cannot really be faulted. It has the usual spoons atmosphere but nothing that warrants complaining about. Staff are fairly efficient (although I've always been when it's fairly empty) and beer range is quite varied with some interesting guest ales on when I last visited.

There is also a small patio garden out back which is fairly unusual for Central London spoons and is quite nice when the sun is out.

Nothing spectacular (it's a spoons) but nothing that will stop me returning at some point when I'm passing.
BeerGutt - 28 Sep 2015 21:03
Open on a Sunday, which if you are coming via the City is a blessing since most of the pubs appear to be closed around here. Fairly bland Wetherspoons but it serves good ale and there's plenty of space. This would be a good pub for down-at-heal lawyers to prepare for a case if the power went off in their office if they couldn't afford the electricity bill.
Richard_ReadingFC - 28 Sep 2015 11:46
Decent JDW; not much choice but what they do is fine. Clean, well-looked after, the staff are efficient and the toilets are original.
djw - 9 Jun 2015 23:02
A curved shaped pub with a low ceiling and subdued lighting which gives you the feeling you're in a library. Several rows of books only add to the impression.
There are various sections including a beer garden.
The choice of beers was a little disappointing with Greene King, London Pride, Abbot and Doombar all on offer. However there was also Mauldoons Bronze Adder, Titanic Desert Hero and Arkells Kingsdown.
I had the Adder and the Desert Hero both of which were very drinkable.
It was mid afternoon when I visited the pub and there was a pleasing lack of the usual Spoons all day drinkers. In fact it was pretty peaceful!
The toilets are downstairs . Both the stairway and the toilets themselves have wood panelled walls and the layout of the urinals is original.

outtamehead - 7 Apr 2015 08:23
Saturday evening, good range of ales, not too many suits or lost tourists. Overall a good'un.
Aztecgoat - 21 Oct 2014 17:36
One positive: the pint of London Pride was in excellent condition. Sadly it was priced at £3.60 ! Although there were plenty of civil and keen bar staff, the old JDW practice of all pumpclips forward, but several ales 'off' was evident - even to the point that staff would attempt to pull a pint then announce 'it's off'. For these reasons = 3/10.

wobblybob - 23 Sep 2014 21:07
After the Hamilton Hall, the Masque Haunt and the Shakespeare's Head, we arrived at the Penderel's Oak, a fairly large Wetherspoons on High Holborn. It has a slightly unusual shape. This was my second or third visit here. But probably my first visit during the summer, as it was the first time I've noticed there is a garden. Has a reasonable range of ales - Titanic Iceberg, Sharps Doom Bar, Greene King Abbot & IPA, Fullers London Pride & Conwy Rampart. Ciders were Mr Whiteheads Boxing Dog, Sheppy's Farmhouse Cider, Bottle Kicking Cider Company Cross Farm Perry & Green Valley Doctor's Orders.
blue_scrumpy - 27 Jul 2014 20:01
I was in a private party in the basement. The access to the floor was for staff and guests invited specificaly for this party. When leaving after the party I did not take my umbrella. I realised it outside but as it was very late, after midnight, I though I would come back next week. I sent the only available email on the website. Never responded to, even thou they read it. When rang their number they said they do not have the umbrella. It just vanished. But they said the staff definitely did not take it. I asked to confirm it via email. Never happened even though the girl on the phone promissed to do it. It is either Bermuda Triagle in the pub or ghosts steal the guests' belongings. Shameful ethics.
BeataMat - 22 Jul 2014 17:31
Large 'spoons on High Holborn. My first visit on a Thursday night crawl and I was pleasantly surprised to find lots of bar staff eager and ready to serve.

12 taps which had 8 ales & 4 ciders and perries on. Choice of ales not brilliant as among the offerings were London Pride, GK IPA & Abbot Reserve. My choice was Butcombe's Great Grey Owl, which was decent.

Small garden was very busy so we stood at the bar opposite the book cases lined with old books...very 'spoons!

All in all a good 'spoons.
lezford - 9 Aug 2013 15:57
Comparing this pub to the Melton Mowbray further down High Holborn I must say that despite the usual tackiness of a JD Wetherspoons pub it's atmosphere was much more invigorating and alive than the cardboard cut-out customers of the mowbray. Better pub
Greenoberet - 25 Jun 2013 01:52

The Ale in this pub is always excellent.

Little wonder it has appeared in Camra's Good Beer Guide.

Usually a decent choice of cider also.
Pat_Bateman - 14 Dec 2012 14:09
Staff turnover seems high, and the staff often indifferent. However this is a large pub with plenty of seating areas and pleasant lighting. It can get busy later in the evening while some people pop in for a quiet meal around 5pm. Choice of real ale is usually very good. Prices are higher than you'd expect from this chain but still under the London average.
absinthe_boy - 7 Nov 2012 13:43
Like this pub a lot. I like that it has little corners and hidey bits to sit in and the food, as long as you choose wisely is good. If only they could splash their fried eggs to cook the top of the yolk I'd be in heaven. As it is I avoid the veggie breakfast as I can't do the jelly on the fried eggs thing. But their cheese and pesto panini is good, as is the veg curry. Also like their cider selection, which is reasonably priced in comparison to the rest of London. Savannah Dry is my favourite.
Ann49 - 17 Aug 2012 17:51
really not a bad effort for a wetherspoon's.

you could do worse in this area, and easily so.
benscaro - 10 May 2012 17:28
Went on a Friday evening, horrendously busy and the a bit short-staffed, however the flipping customers weren't helping, the woman in front of me was asking the hapless barmaid a myriad of questions about the white wine he was ordering, err, this is Wetherspoons love. After this discourse finally came to an end she pulls out a credit card, her round was about £7! Bloke next to me then pays by credit card for 2 drinks, I've only ever seen this in London, JDW should put a stop to it. Rant over, it's a functional pub with one or two real ales worth drinking.
Abteilung - 12 Feb 2012 16:43
Rather expensive for a 'spoons. It is OK decor wise but there are many, many better pubs in the area, and teh Sam Smith's ones (Citee of Yorke, Princess Louise) are actually cheaper as well as more characterful
meltwaterfalls - 13 Dec 2011 16:02
£3.60 for a pint of Stella in a Wetherspoons??

The food prices have shot up as well.

As much as I like this Spoons, at those prices, I might as well go to a slightly nicer pub.
Pat_Bateman - 5 Dec 2011 13:52
This pub has improved immeasurably since I last 'reviewed' it a number of years ago. At that time the service was poor and slapdash at times, but I think this is something that Wetherspoon's have addressed in more recent years. For the most part I find service at Wetherspoon's pubs efficient and friendly, and this was true of my recent visit to the P.O.

The pub gets rather over-busy during the week but was quite cosy on Sinday evening (busy enough to feel lively but not overly so). The range of beers (and quality) was good as well. Revise rating from '4' to '8'.
beermann - 21 Sep 2011 23:25
Above average Wetherspoons, usual range of well kept beers and an atmospheric downstairs bar
rob1981 - 19 Jun 2011 15:23
This is one of the best Spoons I've ever been in.

It's clean, bright and nicely furnished. Service is always quick and efficient. Beers and Ciders are always spot on.

Tried Cheddar Valley Cider here today for the first time ... very nice.

Prairie Gold ale was also lovely.

£2.50 a pint as part of their Ale and Cider festival. You can't go wrong.

5.8 score for this pub is totally unjust.
Pat_Bateman - 28 Mar 2011 14:46
Visited here for the first time last week with a Meetup language group - excellent evening when we ate, drank and managed to speak well with each other.
But, apparently, it is now no longer possible to book tables together downstairs for this sort of group.
So, even though we are a guaranteed group of 30 or so people and growing (which sounds like about £500+ of revenue), we will now have to go elsewhere where we can be sure of some tables and space together.
Such a pity, as I do like the steak nights!

sw19andrew - 4 Feb 2011 23:23
Very nice for a JDW, clean and light.

Beer always seems to be to a good standard.

Loads of curly between 12 and 3...always a plus.

And the odd Celeb (if you can call him that) can be spotted! Gus the Bin Man from Stenders was in today! What a mug!!!

Overall, good service and good beer. That will do me!
Rangers_Tel - 12 Jan 2011 16:26
Usually pretty reliable - you can always get a seat and the beers are well kept. Staff vary from excellent to downright surly, but generally speaking it's one of London's better 'poons. They've also got a 'real' fire. Handy for Chancery Lane tube, too.

Tables aren't always as clean as they could be - when I asked for ours to be wiped, the lass behind the bar handed me the cloth. Leave off, that's your job.

Albert_Campion - 30 Nov 2010 08:37
Like all Wetherspoons a couple of years ago this place wne through a bad phase and wasn't prepared to go back. However at 11am on Saturday not a lot is open and braved to look in again.

Like a number of Wetherspoons now things seem to have improved well. There's a really good range of ales on tap and it is far less busy than the 'Spoons in Kingsway and more reliably open on a Saturday than the Knights Templar - this is also recomended - which is good.
Oakman100 - 29 Nov 2010 13:37
Lovely pub, they've got a variety of ales on at any given time. Lots of tables, a cosy spot guaranteed. Nice food, good value, this is my "safe choice" for a night out.
tra.dos - 10 Nov 2010 00:33
Was open after 11 so we reluctantly ventured in. I had forgotten just how awful spoons pubs are. It looks like a service station canteen from the 1980's. The only redeeming feature and i mean only, was the fact it had a few decent ales on. Bright carpet, fruit machines, posters with photos of their nasty food offerings. Just a big corporate profit machine. Unbearable.
mrmoon12 - 31 Oct 2010 14:46
We're fairly good fan's of spoons on the whole but out of the many we have visited have to say this was the worst, so much so that we only had 1 drink here before leaving. Reasons for this were, firstly it wasn't particularly clean, tables were loaded with empties n not as if pub was that busy, think was down to staff as they were not very welcoming, not very helpful n certainly not in the mood to serve anyone or rather I should say they were choosing who n when they were serving, having got a drink to sit with n mull over our lunch choice on return to bar, bar staff purposefully ignored for nearly 10 mins which just made us leave which we promptly did, going round the corner to Knights Templar pub which was by far a more superior pub than this one could ever wish to be, definitely one to avoid in my opinion
MrsPG - 30 Oct 2010 14:01
One of the better Spoons around, always a good ale choice had Saltaire’s on a recent visit which was excellent
BlindTiger - 3 Sep 2010 14:57
The food seems to be straight out of the freezer via a microwave and poor value for money to boot. With an even bigger recession looming why not up the game and offer better food- your customers are not farmyard animals you know.
Cate4U - 2 Aug 2010 17:15
A pleasant suprise for a Wetherspoons pub. Spacious upstairs with open seating and snugs by the bookcases with a cellar bar that didn't seem at all claustrophobic. Good selection of ales and the food on this occasion was excellent (meatballs, haddock fishcakes, nachos). This afternoon visit was only marred by the barmaid having a stand up row with a customer, whilst two barmen (one possibily the manager judging by his attire) looked on and did nothing to calm or resolve the situation. Entertaining but not welcoming. Worth a second visit though.
simonjolty - 20 Jul 2010 23:44
Great range of beers and wines. Really quick service considering they were packed. Nice bar downstairs with music - didn't think wetherspoons did music?
Scrappydoo - 17 Jul 2010 15:34
A large Spoons with a large downstairs bar as well. Good service, decent ales, apart from them not knowing what a "well done" steak is, no complaints at all!
alexw - 14 May 2010 08:52
One of the better Wetherspoons in the area, friendly staff, usually pretty busy.
liamhamilton - 17 Jan 2010 20:09
Grecian's review is accurate. A convenient Wetherspoons but not one of the best - dark/drear and a bit muggy inside. The beer quality is, as one would hope, fine but there is no other real pleasure in visiting this place.
Arctium_lappa - 29 Nov 2009 14:40
Spacious and rather pleasant.

Much better than most weatherspoons.
boblarkin - 20 Sep 2009 22:45
Decent sized pub, always able to get a seat. Decent service. Overall very good for a Wetherspoons.
telephones_and_toliets - 11 Sep 2009 11:59
A fairly typical 'Spoons. The pub itself is rather uninspiring, comprising the ground floor of an office block - inside it's rather dark and not very well air-conditioned. There's a large downstairs bar which keeps rather irregular hours, and which I've only been in once or twice. Decent range of ales: I'm afraid I visited after a wedding in the area and was rather worse for wear, so I can't remember names, but I had a couple of decent pints here.
grecian - 6 Sep 2009 15:14
Good pint or two of Thwaites Double Century £ 2.19 - very good Wetherspoons pub. Plenty of bar staff - very busy.
KeithP - 28 Apr 2009 13:07
From both quality of ale and speed of service perspectives this is probably the best JDW in the area. Can get very busy on a Thursday/Friday night but so does everywhere around here. I imagine it will benefit from some of my hard earned cash during the upcoming festival.
Millay - 3 Apr 2009 10:51
As Spoons go this is an OK pub and the beer was kept in reasonable condition and the service was perfectly acceptable compared to other Spoons outlets I have been in.
Micky_P - 9 Mar 2009 21:35
Paid a visit on Wednesday last week and, although it isn't my favourite ale, I plumped for a pint of Greene King I.P.A. which was perfectly acceptable. If they keep all of their ales in a similar condition then you won't go far wrong. It has to be said that I'm not a massive fan of Wetherspoon pubs, but I can honestly say that this is one of the best ones that I've been in. The beer is always in good nick and, although I'm not a frequent visitor here, on the occasions when I do pop in then the experience beer-wise is usually favourable
MINTYBOOM - 3 Mar 2009 22:37
This could be the best Wetherspoons in London. Always a good selection of well kept ales, decent bar staff and even quick service for the food. Has a second bar/room downstairs that stops the upstairs one getting too crowded. I always call in here when walking down Holborn and I've never been served a bad pint.
ROBCamra - 2 Feb 2009 16:30
Real ales in good condition today too. The staff served quickly and even smiled! Food service was busy.
oftenscore6 - 16 Nov 2008 23:11
Dropped by for the 'poons Beer Festival. The place was pretty busy, and all the beers I tried were in spot-on condition. The staff could try and crack a smile now and then, but this is still the best London JDW I've been in - not that I go in them much.
Albert_Campion - 11 Nov 2008 11:27
The usual huge Spoons with a good selection of ales and bog standard lager nearing its expiry date.

There is plenty of seating from high tables and sofas at the front of the pub to normal tables and chairs in the 'library' section towards the rear. Once I had worked my way along the winding path to the bar the barmaid that served me was actually on the ball and I was served quickly. Granted it wasn’t busy, but I didn’t have to wait for her to put down the clipboard and to stop counting the stock as is the norm.

I wouldn’t drink in here again as there are better pubs around, but my recent visit wasn’t a hideous experience.
Strongers - 27 Oct 2008 16:54
OK for a 'spoons, but nothing special. Staff seemed very disinterested in customer service and preferred to chat among themselves. Beer was OK but, again, nothing special.
BobOs - 6 Oct 2008 00:50
Popular with mice, local workers, and late night drinkers.
fluiman - 13 Aug 2008 17:44
Went there to see some sport during lunchtime as, unlike most Wetherspoons, has several good screens in the basement. How disappointing!! The ales were frozen, the service awful, and to had to ask several times to get the TVs switched to the right channel. For information your more likely to have sucess in this if you ask the staff serving the food rather than the hopeless bar staff. Talking over food one of our party commented, quite accurately, that his chilli con carne arrived quicker than it took to order.
lout_from_the_lane - 14 Jul 2008 10:18
Large and inevitably crowded with people paying for everything by card instead of cash. A range of beers at least as some people have reported. Staff seemed ok.
rainlight - 17 Jun 2008 22:40
Spent a lovely couple of hours in there recently with a couple of glasses of wine and steak and chips. Good food, very friendly staff, excellent value and as it was a cold and rainy day we were happy to relax next to the open fire. Thumbs up for this one.
ManhattanGirl - 9 May 2008 17:33
I'm suprised this pub has got such positive reviews!

When I went here on a Sunday the service was terrible!

I also spotted a mouse running out from the kitchen with a piece of food in its mouth!

Shame as they had some good ales
sethbreaker - 3 May 2008 15:08
There seems to have been quite a high turnover of staff recently, but happily the newcomers are as good as the predecessors. Thoroughly enjoyable night in there on Saturday last.
Martinl - 18 Apr 2008 21:01
Good pub for meetings of all sorts! Lots of space.
loopzilla - 31 Mar 2008 22:02
I was disappointed with the standards in there yesterday (Sunday). The service was very poor, with short measure pints, an attempt to clear away a clearly unfinished drink, forgotten cutlery more than once, three reminders required before a dessert appeared, and one attempt to serve a dish twice (which seemed to flummox them completely). What an earth would they be like when they are busy?
john_the_jester - 31 Mar 2008 13:41
Always one of the better 'spoons - busy, but nothing like as shouty as many of the pubs in and around the City. Low-key lighting with sensible use of candles too. Some excellent beers on for the Spring real ale festival, and certainly 10 times better than the ghastly Shakespeare's Head up the road a bit.
rpadam - 27 Mar 2008 23:04
One of the better Spoons I’ve been to. The food was of usual spoons standard, the beer was of usual spoons standard as well (slightly flat). The staff were pleasant.
On the whole not bad.
sootythebeerbear - 26 Mar 2008 02:24
Paid a visit with a mate last Monday and the beer and the food (I had a curry) were spot on. The staff were polite and efficient too - definitely the best 'spoons in the area.
MINTYBOOM - 20 Mar 2008 13:32
Still one of the better 'spoons. Beer was good when I could finally get the barman to understand my Yorkshire accent.
Albert_Campion - 11 Mar 2008 21:11
I've been in here quite a few times now. When it's busy there's the usual 'Spoons problems - not enough staff, grubby tables etc. A big plus is that there always seems to be a good range of guest ales - four on yesterday - and I've never had a less than good pint there.
Islander - 22 Feb 2008 17:17
Visited this pub on a Saturday afternoon 08/12/07.
It was a Christmas meet up for a group of about 30/35 friends.

They reserved an area for us which was very accommodating and contacted me close to the day to confirm all of this.

Beer was fine and (as usual for a JDW) very well priced. If I had one small moan it was that the staff seemed to be quite slow in serving everyone.

Badgers - 12 Dec 2007 09:29
Not too crowded when I was in there with an after-work crowd last week, but busy enough to give it some atmosphere. A good range of different guest ales on, making a change from some of my recent JDW experiences, where just the “usual” Spitfire, Pedigree, Abbot etc predominate and in some case comprise the entire ale range. The O’Hanlon’s Goodwill was especially tasty. Another pleasant change from the norm was enough staff to cope with a moderately busy pub, so that nobody seemed to be kept waiting for very long. My friends and I had another appointment elsewhere but in truth we wished that we could have spent longer here.

Ordinary - 10 Dec 2007 21:40
I've been there a few times with a friend when on my lunchbreak as it opens on a Sunday unlike The Knights Templar. Though I've never had a pint there (well, I wouldn't want to fall asleep at my desk would I?) I'm reliably informed the beer is good. One of the barmen has a good selection of one-liners which is obviously welcome but otherwise I feel very neutral - which is, I'm sure, what you're meant to think in a Spoons. 6/10.
patrickjsm - 10 Dec 2007 16:06
Dirty horrible pub with miserable staff. Ale not badly kept though - hence the generous 3 rating!
anonymous - 29 Nov 2007 16:52
Had a pint of Saltaire Chocolate Stout in here, very nice. It was coming to the end of the festival and while they had 7 or 8 on not sure any were the festival beers. Basically a bog standrad Wetherspoons and busy as it was a Friday night.
GuideDogSaint - 17 Nov 2007 23:47
I was in the Penderels Oak last night and enjoyed a couple of pints of O'Hanlons Dry Stout , which went down very nicely. I wouldn't eat there however. What the mouse infestation and all. The carpet hides them well and the buggers moved fast but we definitely saw a couple scurrying around to the rear of the pub (not too far from the kitchen).
anonymous - 9 Nov 2007 09:57
watched rugby world cup final here. good. beer festival on. very good 3 deep at the bar and only 3 barpersons working. piss poor!
ginthedog - 24 Oct 2007 16:04
This pub still shows football in the basement bar.
An entry in the Good Beer Guide for the last 5 years.
mr.toes.5_ - 19 Oct 2007 19:30
Called in a few times recently and noticed a good range of ale
Did this pub used to show football as it doesnt appear to now (a shame)
Worth a trip if in the area
anonymous - 19 Oct 2007 11:05
fullers beer £1.99 a pint, can't argue with that!!!!
e.s.b. was trouser blowing, also it's a pub you could land a light aircraft in. a big pub this.
ginthedog - 28 Sep 2007 18:15
Two more recent visits have re-inforced my belief that this is one of the better Wetherspoon's that I've been in - the staff are good and the beer's good too.
MINTYBOOM - 30 Aug 2007 19:12
I'm not a wetherspoons fan as a rule but this is easily one of their better branches.
mps77 - 30 Jul 2007 17:08
Met my ex boyfriend Peter here but apart from that it's fantastic - toilets are very glam, upstairs AND downstairs, the beer is both cheap and strong. The clientelle can sometimes be very 'chav'/hip hop, but it's easy enough to avoid them if you sit in the far corner.
Crisp_Fewtrell - 25 Jul 2007 17:10
My experiences of this place have always been quite favourable - I was there with some friends last Friday / Saturday night and they quite liked the place too. I'm not normally a massive fan of "Spoons" but this place is probably one of the better ones I've been in.
MINTYBOOM - 10 Jul 2007 12:01
Definitely a cut above the average 'Spoon - everything on the Wetherspoon tick list is there but it's somehow more of a living organism. The beer is uniformly top class. Do I detect just a little hint of a rainbow/ pinkish tinge to the staff? Whatever, cheers lads & keep it up (the good work).
Smelfungus - 14 Jun 2007 12:09
I do not usually like modern pubs but this Weatherspoons is an exception.Spacious with a good, cheap pint of Directors. The toilets are first class.
tinsoldier - 26 May 2007 10:19
Big and better than average Wetherspoon pub. Good beers, well kept, and the usual decent food.
JonW999 - 15 May 2007 23:31
Went in last Tuesday afternoon. A comfortable atmosphere and a very tasty pint of Pride. I'd agree that it does seem better than the average 'Spoons.
Islander - 13 May 2007 17:01
Pleasantly surprised by how good this 'Spoon is. Friendly, attentive staff, spotlessly clean and quick service. Light years ahead of the Shakespeare's Head 'Spoon at the other end of Holborn. I'll be back, and I don't say that very often about a chain pub. How can two branches of the same company less than a mile apart be so utterly different?
Albert_Campion - 25 Apr 2007 17:27
Not too bad for a Wetherspoons - usually a hive of raging p*ss artists and ne'r do wells, although I was pleasently suprised with this one. Nice place to hide from work for a while.
dsw - 13 Mar 2007 16:45
Probably about the best spoons I've been in. It almost feels like a proper pub by their standards, Ales are well kept and even the food wasn't too bad. Staff friendly and attentive. Usual ridiculously low prices
johnkn7 - 23 Feb 2007 15:57
Spent the evening in here this week and thought it was fine. Good range of ales and bottled beers, prompt service despite it being quite busy.. been in once before but didn't realise the downstairs bar was there - moved down there and spent the rest of the night in a cosy corner feeling very chilled out, I like it! BUT - closing that downstairs bar at 1030 sends my rating from a 8 to a 6. why, why why?!
Dave_ESB - 16 Feb 2007 19:43
I got a large number of people in for a birthday do last Saturday. With two days notice the bar manager agreed to hive off the family area for me when the families had finished for the evening, which meant I had that part from about 9pm onwards, which certainly helped. They managed the tab well, and people had a good time, so well done the Penderel's - the staff seem like a good team.
firelees - 18 Jan 2007 23:05
Don't frequent this place on a regular basis but from what I recall of my last visit the ale was spot on and the food was quite good too - in fact my mate Hawkesey said it was one of the best Wetherspoon's he'd ever been in. Certainly not as bad as some of the other comments make out.
MINTYBOOM - 3 Jan 2007 01:57
It is more the poor service and the lack of a range of drinks in the cellar bar that really annoys me about this place.
Airwolf - 29 Dec 2006 12:42
In fairness, I think the point being made is that in an English pub the only game he could see was Scotland's.

If Wetherspoon's show the football (which I wish they wouldn't) they could at least make sure it's the match people want to see.
anonymous - 29 Nov 2006 22:11
"The worst run pub in London" because it doesn't show the particular football match you want to see?

There are many who think the biggest mistake Wetherspoons ever made was to start having TVs and, in particular, show football on them. If any neutral observer wants to find out why, check out the difference in the type of crowd and consequent atmosphere in this place when a match is being shown and at any other time. There are plenty of other pubs, in this and any other area, which are happy to show live football at the expense of an acceptable drinking environment for other customers: go there, not here.

To repeat the gist of my previous posts on the Penderel's Oak, this has all the Wetherspoon positives (a good range of drinks at very good prices, OK service, unspectacular but reliable food in a spacious and clean environment) but avoids the unfortunate Wetherspoon negatives, and in particular drunken loudmouthed chavs bellowing about football.
Martinl - 29 Nov 2006 20:48
Beggars belief this tip. South African bar "manager", poured me a pint the other day, and the barrel went off when he had done about 2/3 of it,..he clocked me, to see if i had noticed,..obviously presumed not,..pumped the head a bit to froth it up,..and then came over and served it,...fcking funny,..ludicrous tit,...Reckon he thought i was a tourist or amateur!....God knows how many people get palmed off with this dross in here, knowing no better!

When i told him that id like it filled up, he gave an audible sigh,..and moaned like a spoilt teenager how that, in order to finish the pint he would have to change the barrel,..and *sigh* "did i really want to wait?" "Yes,..yes i do" i said,..and he flounced on down to the cellar,...i in turn,..flounced on out!
kmcs - 8 Nov 2006 12:11
This must be the worst run pub in London!
I have watched football in the cellar bar on a couple of occasions only to be faced with atrocious service and all the real ales being unavailable after half-time. I had planned to watch the recent England game here but found that the bar had been hired out for a private function (I believe that only the downstairs bar has Sky) and that the Scotland game was being shown in the main bar area.This is the second time that the management have allowed something similar to happen. Truly a shocking pub.
Airwolf - 15 Oct 2006 01:29
I used to work in the offices above this pub so it was very convenient.

The TV does make it a bit hard to talk to people though. But its cheap(or cheaper than other pubs) as you would expect.
Jo984 - 28 Sep 2006 10:48
Back on form now the World Cup is over - wasn't one of the ideas behind the Wetherspoon concept an absence of TV? - and therefore once again the place to be for a civilized Saturday night in the centre of town. To answer the previous poster: some of the previous comments were absolute rubbish, in particular those making snide comments about some of the customers, and yes I did make a point of checking that the advertised real ales were actually on offer.
Martinl - 26 Jul 2006 00:14
1. Just because your findings when you visited the pub didn't tally with those of other people on previous visits doesn't make their comments 'absolute rubbish'.

2. Are you seriously saying that EACH time you went to the bar to order your next Magners you also checked to see what real ales were available?


Nevertheless if what you say is true it more likely suggests that the pub has cleaned up its act with regard to availability of beers, not that the previous claims were false.
beermann - 7 May 2006 04:41
I can't help pointing out that a few of the comments posted about this place are absolute rubbish. I may perhaps be somewhat biased in their favour because of the fact that they have complete disabled access and facilities, a necessity for me personally, and the allegedly erratic availability of real ales is not a primary concern for me as I drink bottles of Magners when in there. However, on the last couple of visits I made a point of checking this: on each occasion, in the ground floor bar at least, there were six ales advertised and all six were available, all evening.

Although Wetherspoon's food tends to be pretty generic, I tried a chicken tikka masala last night and it was actually pretty good. What's more, being a Thursday, it only cost about a fiver with a free drink thrown in. The crowd are also pretty decent for a Wetherspoon - don't be put off by Lonegroover (yeah, too right) and his comments about "Traceys".
Martinl - 5 May 2006 20:32
Typical Spoon’s pub in the City. Quiet when we visited but it was 11am on a Saturday. Out of the 8 or so beers advertised only 3 were actually on sale, but the quality was good. Probably better during the working week.
Chief_IDIOT - 9 Apr 2006 09:57
Used to be an after work regular here but it's gone downhill so much we go elsewhere now. The range of guest beers is not kept up, and it takes far too long to get served now, waiting behind groups of Traceys ordering bottles of WKD and paying for a £5 round with a bank card.
lonegroover - 17 Mar 2006 17:24
I'm with tanderson7 here. One of the worse Weatherspoons I have been to. Huge but souless is a good description. Absolutely no character.
TheHorsesMouth - 16 Feb 2006 14:09
This used to have a good selection of guest ales, but now you will just get 2 out of the 12 hand pumps upstairs.Then you will have the long-winded process of finding someone to serve you and then trying to get them to understand what you want! This has definitely gone down hill over the last 12 months.Shame.
string - 2 Feb 2006 13:29
Pleasant, comfortable interior. However upon arrival at about 10.15 pm on a Saturday night was informed that only two (Abbot and Golden Delicious) of approximately 10 real ales were currently available. This was down to one (Golden Delicious) by the time I ordered another drink at about 10.50. This is ridiculously poor service in my opinion. I also didn't like the sour-faced attitude of the male member of staff in a blue shirt, with ponytail and keys dangling down.
beermann - 20 Nov 2005 21:31
this is the a-bomb in the wetherspoons arsenal.....cavernous, soulless tip......if this boozer was a supermarket it would be aldi or lidl. a disgrace.
tanderson7 - 11 Nov 2005 07:07
Another good meeting-up pub. I mostly prefer the other Holborn Wetherspoon, Shakespeare's Head, because of the more lively location, the greater mix of customers, and a more down to earth feel, but really there's nothing much to split them, and there are days when I am happier in this one.
SilkTork - 9 Oct 2005 10:38
A good choice of Czech beers usually makes for decent pub. However, this place got it slightly wrong and you need a good knowledge of the Czech language in order to get a beer.

It has TV which is slightly odd for a Wetherspoons, but they are reluctant to put the sound on upstairs, even on big sports events. This ruins the atmosphere, but if you want that why are you in a Wetherspoons?
cardamom - 21 Sep 2005 15:42
Great big pub! As with other Moon's pubs, it has a nice selection of draught beers and bottled beers.
edrok666 - 21 Aug 2005 14:44
Usual Wetherspoon's, but with big screen showing football, music etc in downstairs bar.
rah - 2 Jun 2005 14:07
Standard usually bog-standard Wetherspoon but the bar was filled with pink ballons when I last went in as they had a promotion on for pink champagne. One other customer suggested to his friend that it looked like the photo the hospital gave him of his haemorrhoids (fortunately he didn't have it with him). Aside from looking like a proctologist's nightmare, the beer was very good and well kept and the range excellent with guest ales from the spring beer festival as well as others from the spring guest ale list. My rather lively pint was topped up without having to ask.
anonymous - 16 May 2005 21:28
Want a pint and a guaranteed seat on the weekend? Then come down. They do both.
Ruby - 19 Apr 2005 15:27
A big Wetherspoons pub with plenty of places to sit. Solid but unspectacular beer, decent food. Big screen showing sport or music videos. "Oktoberfest" is the main event worth coming here for.
kyle473 - 16 Apr 2005 21:38
Beer pretty ordinary served with loads of attitude by vacant-eyed staff
mally - 25 Mar 2005 13:05
Typical Wetherspoon pub, like many now has screens for the footy/videos downstairs. The beer and food were fine when I visited it last, and they usually have been previously, but like other users I find it a soulless place.
SJC - 1 Mar 2005 23:12
Had a rather frustrating wait in here on Saturday evening when there were only two bar staff upstairs. The place seemed a bit soulless, but then I like having some quiet. The beer and food was fine and reasonably priced as usual since it's Wetherspoons.
jaq - 21 Feb 2005 13:07
I've been here a fair number of times and never really enjoyed it. If you order food it takes a long time to get served, some of the staff seem permanently bad tempered (with some noteable exceptions). The beer is worse than in most wetherspoons - which is a shame as they often have quite a few guest ales on which i'd like to try in proper condition. Not a great place.
spleen978 - 10 Feb 2005 14:38
Very busy pub with the usual Weatherspoons beers and well priced wine list, the smoking area where you first walk in can be offputting but the back is quieter and fresher. It is probably time that this pub was redecorated as the floors and toilets are getting a bit shabby.
anonymous - 4 Jan 2005 11:50
Staff are very nice and didn't have to wait too long to get served at the bar. Barman kindly acted as policeman to stop thuggish louts smoking in the non-smoking area. However, why are glasses in Wetherspoons pubs never truly clean? It does to take a nice clean hanky along with you to D.I.Y. Not a bad pub at all though.
Pippa - 16 Nov 2004 09:11
Rob..if it was that bad why stay there. Sold a decent pint of Dark Island, Scottish ale last night.
michael - 25 Oct 2004 13:22
Huge pub with enormous downstairs bar. It was far too loud when I visited the place, but I must say that the air conditioning was fantastic and I didn't have to breathe in too much of my companion's cigarette smoke. Ok place, very much a Weatherspoons.

Good toilets though....
Mandi - 1 Jun 2004 01:02
Without a doubt the worst 'spoons pub in London (with the notable exception of the Edmund Halley in Lee SE12)! It is also the largest. So large infact that it is devoid of atmoshpere. This is certainly true of the main bar area.

Was there with some friends last night watching the Aresenal Chelsea game (in the "cellar" bar) Firstly the bar itself has been "paved" using fake uneven quarry tiles - result; means that you stand your pint on the bar @ your peril. Which leads me onto the beer itself. A couple of the taps were having the pipes cleaned and were adorned with the "do not touch" notices. Hardly a sign to instil confidence in a drinker! Fosters was sickly and flat. The stella was warm and the Kroenbourg was, frankly disgusting. While we ordered no food plenty of people were and it looked horrible and barley edible

The only thing to recommend this shabby pub is the "novelty" toilets. But you don't go to the pub just to marvel @ their khazi's do you??!!

Rob - 25 Mar 2004 11:32
This pub isn't bad, good food, good atmosphere - if you want to chat stay upstairs, if you want music go downstairs.
Toilets are a good design but are always blocked and it sticks in there. Takes ages to get severed at the bar too and the staff are always moaning at you to move.
The reason its full of 'suits' is because the area has barristers chambers all over and buildings full of offices. People dress smartly to go to work, what's wrong with that?? And i'm sure they dont go on about how much they earn......maybe the person who wrote that is a little jealousy he isn't on as good a money as they are!!
The Mistress - 5 Dec 2003 15:46
Cool toilets? The gents toilets in this place are a design nightmare. Who decided it was a good idea to put the urinals on the outside of a large circular column, which takes up too much space and makes you have to squeeze past the back of another unfortunate bloke in full "flow" to get to the one free stall which isn't blocked? A woman, presumably. There are tried and tested ways of doing bog architecture and they should
not be experimented with by the design school show-offs!
Glyn - 26 Sep 2003 11:51
We use this pub for group meetings on Sundays, the staff are friendly, service is great and being in the city it's very quiet. It's also really easy to get to, and Lincolns Inn Fields is right behind it (down the alley to by the main entrance) if you wanna sit outside for a bit in the hot weather!
Casp - - 9 Aug 2003 14:02
well well, another miserable loud as you like lawyers and office workers dump! blag blag bullshit on about your wages and career utterly disgusting clientele hitler stalin trotsky and hess would seem almost bearable compared to those arrogant full of themselves scumbags. right: food ok drinks ok atmos -when not full of boring suits -quite pleasant actually. Catch it early, on a weekday-please dont go on a fri evening...youve been warned-otherwise "im on 50grand -im on 70grand...boring...especially silly as im from belgravia! (watch out who you show off next to boys!)and theyre from clapham!
belgrave square boy - 21 Jul 2003 12:50
Speak as you find - I've always found the Penderels to be a good pub. Definitely better than most of the other pubs in the area. Good selection of drink. Only bad point - gets full of suits "on the pull" on the Thursday / Friday nights.
John - 1 Jul 2003 14:25
The downstairs is the best bit - the new Stringfellows-meets-China Whites
Ben Foster - 11 Mar 2003 16:03
The best place to host an ES pub quiz I have ever seen
Ben Foster - 11 Mar 2003 16:02
Not bad. Better service than one usually expects from a Wetherspoons.
Steve - 7 Mar 2003 08:38
Yes, very interesting toilets. A large wetherspoons - it even has a cash machine in it. All the normal wetherspoons trimmings.
Chris - 12 Sep 2002 12:17
Very cool toilets - if ever thee were!
Anon - 25 Jul 2002 15:53
This pub is actually a Weatherspoons with music!!!!! Okay, it's downstairs on MTV - but it's a START!!
Katie - 23 Jul 2002 15:33

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