skip nav  

Old Coffee House, Soho

back to pub details

user reviews of the Old Coffee House, Soho

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

Limited selection of Brodies available (and nothing very special) and TV's on too loud to hold a conversation. If you've never been to this pub before you might think it's OK, if the last time you were there was a couple of years ago you'll be sad to see it's decline.
Doob - 3 Jan 2017 11:42
Not seen the Brodies range before - but they are all here.

more than could fit onto a single photo.

I found it OK.

Decent enough boozer.

Photos at my blog -
Mappiman - 30 Sep 2016 13:39
Nice pub but the Brodies beer tasted like a dodgy home brew. Disappointing.
MathewT - 12 Feb 2016 11:49
Not a bad alehouse considering how poor the West End is for ale. Had a full selection of Brodies brews on offer both of those I sampled ( the plae IPA and Bethnal Green Bitter) were on good form.
anonymous - 22 Jun 2014 21:34
Great pub, excellent service.
catbert - 21 Mar 2014 00:44
Great pub
canarly - 19 Dec 2013 22:27
Rude service.
catbert - 17 Dec 2013 00:35
I went in on a Monday around 11.30am so very quiet. Had a really nice pint of London Fields Pale Ale from the pump and could see a good selection of beers on both pump and keg. The barman was certainly gruff but not actually rude to me. I felt more concerned for the tourists behind me who asked for a "glass" of beer and a mulled cider. It didn't go well but ultimately I think he was reasonably patient with them. I would happily return to work through all the beers.
a_cheeky_half - 11 Dec 2013 23:12
In here yesterday early evening and a good crowd in = headcount of 32 including myself.
There are two barmen busy serving everyone politely and at good speed.
There are 9 hand pulls here split 5/4 on each end of the bar but only 2 beers on as the clips are turned round on the others.
Bethnal Green Bitter & Kiwi are the too in question and very nice they are too @ a very reasonable £3.50 a pint.
With regard to the comments by LiamB below I find them hard to believe.
I am always wary of someone who makes just one post just to criticise and slag off a place.
Must have some ulterior motive has he been barred or something of the sort so is seeking revenge?

bjbrummiejohn - 13 Sep 2013 08:47
I went in here with my girlfirend the other day. The real ale tasted acidic, looked cloudy and stank. I asked the barman nicely If he wouldn't mind swapping it. He leant over, took a large mouthful out of my pint and slammed it back on the bar saying that there's nothing wrong with it, whilst walking away. After persisting I managed to get the person who I suspected was the landlord. When I mentioned the taste of the beer and what the barman had done, he to told me to F*ck off! I was dumbstruck and left after returning the compliment. Read around the net and you will find quite a few reviews mentioning the smell of urine, poor beer and rude staff. There are many great pubs in the vicinity. Don't even take the risk, go to one of the others and have a nice night. Rather than have it ruined by people who were lobotomised at birth.
LiamB - 11 Aug 2013 15:04
Excellent pub. Spoilt for choice with the beers, given the five real and further keg offerings (of which the Big Mofo Stout was the pick, but er, not a session beer at 10%+). Previous comments may be in relation to the rather dour Scot behind the bar, I can see why some may be put off.
Would definitely return to this pub.
PhilR - 4 Jan 2013 20:19
Visited 4 times in last few months. "Angry, surly barman" is hardly the cuddly type (I believe there are other pubs in the area that cater for that need!) but I've never had any problems with him. Always prompt to serve, knows his ales and the only time I've been given a bad pint was end of barrel (it happens) and it was changed without question. A good selection (5) of Brodies excellent ales with Kiwi being the favourite amongst our company. Also tried their new key-keg offering which was full of flavour but I am not a fan of this over-chilled, over-priced fad called "craft" ales.
Lupulus - 3 Sep 2012 11:56
angry, surly barman who accused my friend of not saying 'thank you' as he delivered two half pints which were two fingers short of full.

... may re-assess whether to bother returning, as much as i like brodies beer.
benscaro - 10 May 2012 17:21
Oh dear Oh dear - what has happened here? Saturday evening - first beer was off and the barman - who looked pi**ed to us - wouldn't change them. We asked the landlord to test the beer and give us his opinion. "I don't drink beer" came the reply. What - you are joking!! This is a Brodies pub which promotes the micro-brewery's products and you employ a manager who doesn't drink beer!!!!!!! Anyway, beer was eventually changed and our money refunded (the barman made us pay for the second choice). Sadly,this ale was also a bit naff so we left.
Now- I have used this pub on several occasions before now and it has always been pretty good but after this performance I shall be re-considering whether I visit again or not. I sincerely hope that this was just a "one-off".
mcroyal - 30 Oct 2011 13:56
Enjoyed my visit here the other day. Didn't eat at all but was impressed with the service and the number of real ales available. Several Brodies beers on and as LennyBanter mentioned the staff were happy to offer samples of each one.
The decor is interesting. Lots of posters and paintings with no set theme at all. Boxing in one area old WW1 posters in another.
Being in the Soho area it got really busy come the evening.
A good time and I'll definately pay another visit.

outtamehead - 26 Oct 2011 11:50
A lovely pub smack bang in the middle of the tourist hell that is Soho/Carnaby Street. The dťcor is lively and there is a lovely atmosphere about the place. A good selection of ales which the friendly staff were more than happy to let me have a taste of to decide which one I wanted. The food is very good and the portions are very generous. The prices are also reasonable. Two meals and two drinks for less than £20. Well worth a visit if you are in town.
LennyBanter - 17 Aug 2011 20:38
Disgusting pint of Guinness
jezpax - 26 Jul 2011 11:02
In tourist ridden Soho it's good to find a typically English pub, although Rugby biased when a match is on you may hear an Aussie, Kiwi or S'th Efrican twang. Great selection of Real Ales from Brodies and there was a beer for the Redemption brewery.
Abteilung - 28 May 2011 12:54
Great pub with a good range of Brodies beers including one from the Redemption Brewery. Lots to look at with plenty of stuff on the walls & very much Rugby 'themed'.
Booze_Allen - 23 May 2011 18:18
Blokish pub with unusual ales for London. Service from a character-filled faced barman is a bit grumpy - is it affected? I am not sure. My wife wouldn't like this bar but I don't mind it. 6/10
dry_riser_inlet - 8 May 2011 10:27
Very busy on a Friday night, was lucky to get a seat. Beer range was very good - 4 from Brodies and Otley's O5, just a pity they didn't have a darker beer on as all of these were blond. Toilets need a refurb!
BeeryRog - 28 Feb 2011 13:53
A fairly traditional Soho boozer that has a good selection of beers, but is spoilt by a couple of factors. I'm fairly confident I encountered the same barman mentioned in several previous reviews. Even the guy in the Gatehouse in Norwich had more about him than this guy. He seemed extremely disinterested and was more intent on getting back to his conversation with his regulars. This conversation seemed to be centred mainly around swear words and muttering comments about other customers (including me) in the pub. My second gripe was the toilets. The gents had a fairly disgusting smell, which there was just no need for. The beer selection was good - Brodies Polska, Olde Ardour, Amarilla, Brewers Gold & English Best plus also Redemption Pale Ale & Hopspur. Bed pans and other items hang from the ceiling. Stuffed birds and fish can be seen in cabinets on the walls, whilst a couple of large mirrors dominate the rear wall. A nice pub. But a real shame about the service. I much prefer the King William IV and the Cross Keys. Avoid the surly service and try these instead.
blue_scrumpy - 3 Feb 2011 19:59
Not having been able to gt up all the way to Leyton, I welcomed the opportunity to sample some Brodies here.
Uncle_Dunkel - 2 Feb 2011 19:21
Nice pub. Interesting beers. Gets very full
firminafirm - 7 Jan 2011 22:34
Not sure why this is in the CAMRA good beer guide this year. As a pub, its nowt to write home about, and so far as the Brodies they have are concerned, it is a far more limited range than is available in Willy4 in Leyton, and 50% more expensive.

And I'm sad to say that I echo earlier comments made about one of the staff here. Last night I encouraged my companions to be sympathetic, after all - he might have suffered some awful personal tragedy recently. Sadly though, it seems he's like that all the time. Perhaps he should consider another career.
Hotfoot - 5 Dec 2010 21:16
I went to this pub for the first time, to meet friends. Not only is it nothing special, certainley not worth the walk down Carnaby St for, but the staff behind the bar are as miserable as.

One paticular grumpy staff member who served me, looked quite offended when I explained to him he'd spoken to me like I was something he'd stepped in. Later in the night, his 'colleague' made a beeline for me, and pushed me in the back.


Poor bar, far to warm, not worth the trip to be honest.
mfdc - 16 Aug 2010 07:28
Visited here yesterday with 2 friends. First pint was great, unfortunately the second was like vinegar, when I complained the rude and miserable barman, without even tasting the beer, told me that was how it is supposed taste. When I suggested he taste the beer he told me he didn't need to as that's how it is. So we voted with our feet, won't be back and I would not recommend anyone else to visit either. Rates a big fat zero from us, a shame as it has so much potential.
Sandinista - 21 Jul 2010 12:53


RedRoosterRocker - 19 Jul 2010 04:16
This is a pub that has been on my radar for a visit for some time, but it was not till early June that I actually got round to getting here for the first time.

It's a fine traditional street corner pub situated on the fringes of Soho. Externally, we learn that the pub offers "real ales from our own micro brewery", although this strikes me as being somewhat slightly misleading as the range of beer pumps on the bar indicate that the micro brewery in question is Brodies, which, if we didn't already know, is actually in Leyton.

The interior is bigger than it looks from the outside, but is well decorated with plenty of pots and pans hanging down from the ceiling, some boxing memorabilia, guitars, stuffed birds, First World War posters, enamel signs and several old Truman Hanbury and Buxton mirrors. I did also notice that framed letter from David Beckham that I recollect seeing in the Cross Keys in Covent Garden some while ago.

The pub was originally a Coffee Public House run by the Temperance movement.

On the afternoon on my visit, a large drop down screen was showing the Australia v Ghana game, but it didn't dominate or detract from the friendly welcoming atmosphere. Notably, it was clear from the interaction between bar staff and customers that there were a good number of customers who were regulars and on first name terms with the staff. Tourists were relatively few and far between, although those that did venture in were cordially welcomed.

There were approx half a dozen Brodies beers on. All beers appeared to be priced at £ 3.00p. Both the Special and the Pride of St George were on good form. On the basis of my visit, I would expect the pub, which advertises regularly in London Drinker, to make next year's CAMRA Good Beer Guide.

I quite liked this one and it's going on my list for an early re-visit.
JohnBonser - 9 Jul 2010 08:22
Decent looking pub with Brodies beers. One was indifferent but was end of the barrel. Special was quite nice. Similar decor to King William IV with old brewery mirrors around the place.
GuideDogSaint - 18 Apr 2010 14:42
One of Soho's last real boozers. Nice to see Brodie's on, which was in reasonable condition. Prices are pretty good for the area - at least, buying a round doesn't make you quietly weep while you wait for your change, like some other places do.

I do like this pub, but jeez - that bloke behind the bar - cheer up, mate.
Albert_Campion - 11 Mar 2010 14:02
Yes, it's a down to earth, fairly typical non-poseurs pub. But I wasn't very impressed with the Brodies, tried two different ales and both seemed a bit lifeless. Most people were drinking lager - maybe it was a bad night as the football was on the TV ansd the volume was very loud.
alebarry - 4 Mar 2010 18:23
Recently revisited this pub again after about five years and must say was a very decent evening. They must have had up to 5 or 6 Ales on, all from the Brodies Brewery of East London, all at £3 a pint. Enjoyed the beer so much I had to pop in for a quick one the following day and would have stayed longer but for a train to catch. Just wish it was like this (ie the excellent beers) when I used to work just round the corner from; will visit again when next in town.
darloexile - 11 Feb 2010 17:45
Quite simply, a gem of a pub with local beer served buy knowledgeable staff
asprilla69 - 19 Nov 2009 23:48
I really liked the Old Coffee House. The brown tinted windows and pleasant interior gave it a real feeling of cosiness. Given that there are some real poseurs pubs near here the clientele was also pretty down to earth and I felt it is a pub that is easy to spend an evening in.

If you are looking for a good pub in this area that isn't too rowdy or full of tossers then you can do much worse than the Old Coffee House.
murgatroyd - 13 Nov 2009 23:15
Great Pub, very friendly and efficient staff. Bar runs along 3/4 of the side of the pub. The difference is this pub understands that people donít want to have to wait at the bar for 20 minutes to get served so they have adequate number of staff to ensure that doesnít happen. it would be too hard to fit anymore behind the bar if they tried! Its small, but friendly and with a good atmosphere and decent beers served by people who know what they are doing. - Itís a simple philosophy - Just like a London pub should be. Itís a shame that other pubs in the area do not take note, but to be honest I donít care as long as the Coffeehouse stays the way it is. They also have screens up and always play sports, with the sound up for the big games. - Highly Reccommended.
InterMeLocal_1980 - 8 Oct 2009 15:25
Nice pub sign and recruitment posters, but I was charged four quid for a pint of IPA which should be three (and given six quid change for a twenty quid note). Staff were not helpful in either respect. Think the owners need to send in a mystery shopper some time soon. Did I look like a tourist?
notdrowningbutwaving - 22 Aug 2009 19:21
I thought I knew most of the 'proper' pubs in this area, but came across this place for the first time last night quite by chance. Lots of memorabilia all over the place, efficient staff and a good, friendly atmosphere. Had an excellent pint of Brodies Sunshine, which was also new to me (comes from Walthamstow, apparently). Recommended.
rpadam - 1 Apr 2009 22:51
One of my favourite bolt holes in Soho. Has a really cosy feel, and the beer is always good. Staff are pretty friendly too.
speccie27 - 12 Mar 2009 14:03
Well located pub and utterly miraculously for the West End ... genuinely friendly staff.
TS77 - 4 Mar 2009 09:20
Excelent pub, excellent beer. Probably the best pub in Soho
stevecole - 8 Dec 2008 16:09
Great old London Boozer.

Typical style old fashioned London pub as you would expect them 30 years ago that have not changed. Love it in here. Great friendly staff, rarely busy so you can't get served and a great atmosphere.

Skanky toilets, but so what. All toilets are aren't they!
londonanon - 7 Oct 2008 23:04
As mentioned, every inch of wall space has a painting, mirror or wartime poster on it - GOD SAVE THE KING!

The pub is long and narrow and the bar almost runs the whole length of it. A had to wait for the barman to finish his cigarette outside, but he apologised and was very friendly whilst serving me. Standard lagers were available along with 6X, Deuchars and Pedigree.

There is a plasma screen at each end of the pub and there were a few people watching the cricket whilst I was there.

The bogs are very smelly, but the rest of the pub is good and I will definitely go back for another visit.
Strongers - 1 Sep 2008 13:40
I'd forgotten what a nice pub this is. IPA and 6X on tap.
kevins1966 - 22 Apr 2008 14:49
Nice cosy pub in central London. The Bric a Brac adds to the pubs atmosphere. Friendly bar service. Had a pint of Sussex bitter that was okay. Worth the short walk from Carnaby Street. Serves food but while I was there no one had placed any orders.
snowdog2112 - 15 Mar 2008 09:37
Nice enough pub. Lots of bric a brac, including an interesting collection of Army recruiting posters for various wars. Pint of Pedigree I had was OK (not good, just OK). Seating was comfortable enough and the service on a late Wednesday lunchtime was just fine. Nice little pub somewhat off the beaten track.
RexRattus - 9 Mar 2007 18:48
... reminds me of my Gran's house.
Not that she has beer pumps in her living room (I'd visit more if she did)
I think it's a fear of all that brass clutter.
Nice boozer tho.
anonymous - 17 Oct 2006 14:21
nice old style pub near carnaby st - interesting decor including stuffed animals

once saw bobby gillepse from primal scream in there acting pretenious
Ziggy66 - 9 Aug 2006 22:02
Great pub. Love the orange windows and the general louche shabbiness. Beer's OK, too. Lots of slightly-knackered Victoriana on the walls. Service is just on the good side of alright. There's a newspaper cutting on the wall behind the bar about the rudeness of the landlord. One word of warning: One of the regulars has the most annoying laugh you'll even hear... enough to make your teeth crumble.
Albert_Campion - 2 Dec 2005 17:38
Best in the immediate locality. Not too many of the loud meedja types that have so blighted this area in the last ten years. Usually excellent ales.
flat3 - 23 Nov 2005 10:08
There the other night and the guy behind the bar was nothing short of hopeless. Off the beat and track though which makes it a good venue if you want to avoid all the other dross.
Lozmate - 5 Aug 2005 14:13
Had a swift pint in here recently whilst my mates who I was on a session with were getting a bite to eat down the road. Found the staff friendly and the ale was reasonably well kept. As a previous poster commented, it is surprisingly quiet given its location.
johnkn7 - 19 Jul 2005 22:03
good, solid boozer. also an excellent sniping point when you feel like slotting a few [email protected] at the sun and 13.
tanderson7 - 31 Mar 2005 15:07
I've got a soft spot for this place too - if I'm ever meeting someone in London I'll always suggest this as a starting point, and it often ends up the venue for a whole evening. Nice old place, makes you appreciate the back streets of London.
cid - 22 Feb 2005 17:02
This one is very dear to me. I've been frequenting this pub for over 25 years and it has managed to be consistent in keeping its Victorian decor and atmosphere for all this time, resisting the current trend to tear out the soul of ye ol' England in order to attract the younger set. Oddly enough, the younger set are now searching out pubs like this and I say good on 'em. If you study the pictures and objects covering every conceivable bit of wall space, you might find it an education in Victorian/Edwardian mores. It gets busy and smokey but the hustle and bustle of media wannabees is electric. The choice of real ales is limited but always sound.
zaparoski - 31 Dec 2004 11:27
Despite being slap bang in the middle of Soho, this pub can sometimes get overlooked. Not all the time, but sometimes, even on a Friday night, it just seems to get passing trade, with no real sense of filling up. That, of course, is a good thing - and this old-fashioned boozer will reward you popping in. The walls are full of pictures, the staff are prompt, and the Guinness is good. Quality...
Claret_and_blue - 21 Dec 2004 17:05
Nice little pub, worth popping into. Nipped in for one before heading to the Cantons.
Jack Knight - 24 Aug 2004 11:57
Lovely old pub, worth a look. Saw a great comedy show here last week, Pappy's Fun Club, the guys running it say it's a monthly show. Look out for it.
Horatio - 23 Jul 2004 12:07
Tends to be heaving in the evening, but well worth a visit. Has a huge media crowd in there, which may or may not be your cup of tea. Beers okay in a generic sort of way. Get there early.
Wayne - 9 Jun 2004 12:14
small, quiet, no food, even during premiership sunday it wasnt' crowded.
very nice.
Richard - 28 Mar 2004 15:37

got anything to say about this pub?

Please read our reviews policy before posting.
Only registered users can post reviews. Please log in. If you don't have an account yet, register here.