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Bridge House Tavern, Penge

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user reviews of the Bridge House Tavern, Penge

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

First of the new wave of Hipster and Gastropubs to hit the area. Have to go up stairs to reach the bar when you arrive so not one for the less mobile. Beer is always served well, but is 30-40p more expensive per pint than comparative pubs in the area. Popular with people with babies/young children which can be irritating. Decent sized garden at the back.
southlondonbeero - 20 Nov 2016 09:57
The landed gentry have moved in here. Pleasant atmosphere, busy with buggies and pedigree dogs during the day. Theatre inside which is a good bonus. Expensive, such is the way of things in this kind of pub. Good quiz on a Thursday. Normally has three real ale on pump. My wife says they mix a fine Virgin Mary. Nice garden.
BitterShurn - 3 Aug 2016 16:12
Went in 2 nights ago with my wife. 2 large white wines and half a lager and lime £17.50.
Go to Sainsburys and buy 3 bottles for the same price and go home and drink them.
Total crap!
chavsum - 21 Jul 2016 20:51
Having never been here I choose to pop in for a quick pint on a Wednesday evening.

Around 9pm when i arrived at this large main road pub. The area as you enter had a dozen or so people in across 2 groups with rest of the punters sat up the top in the room behind the bar towards the garden area.

The small bar area had 4 hand pumps but only 2 ales on my visit. Sambrook's Wandle and Whitstable Bay which was very drinkable if not a little hard to swallow at £4.20 a pint.....maybe I spend too much time up North but that's a bit lumpy for me.

Music playing softly over the intelligent conversation was nice and gave the pub a bit of ambience.

I enjoyed my pint and left within 25 minutes or arriving. Would i visit again, yes I probably would but I wont go out of my way to come back.

Pleasant enough and completely inoffensive clientele.
lezford - 15 Feb 2016 17:02
Beautiful garden especially now the sun is shining.

But £4.20 for a pint of bitter. This is not the West End for chrissakes!

weecelt - 14 Apr 2015 18:27
Dear chuh,

After review of CCTV and a meeting with the staff on last evening, tie comments made on this site are in accurate.

After a long evening of drink and snacks you were upset about the cost of your bill. We removed the service as you requested and you still refused to pay?

My staff are just doing their job, they do not get paid to take a use or be called names.

Also the hummus comment? I don't think so..

Please don't come back :-) scott

bridgehousese20 - 26 Oct 2014 12:40
We went to the Bridge House last night and had a fun evening until I asked to pay off my card, at which point I was presented with a bill that was a lot higher than I expected. The bar staff eventually agreed to remove the service charge that they'd added, as other commenters have noted, without asking (we hadn't had any food or table service), but it was still much more than we though it would be.

The barman refused, aggressively, to return my card or give me an itemised bill until I had paid. When I queried the bill again, I was told: "Just f*cking pay it or we'll report you for theft".

The guest ales are decent and the pub itself is a nice building, although we've eaten there a couple of times and found it to be overpriced and disappointing - on one occasion a starter of houmous and pitta arrived without the pitta "because we've run out" (no refund or alternative was offered).

So, if you fancy finishing an evening being loudly accused of theft because you've had the temerity to question a very expensive tab, why not pop in?

chuh - 24 Oct 2014 12:59
I find the comments very interesting of late...No change in Management for over 3 years and still the same owner...The place is busier than ever and the food is fantastic? I think a lot of comments on this site are of jealous local trade and bitter people. A great local with fab food, beer and wine. A great large beer garden and Now a theatre! Keep up the great work Bridge House
bridgehousese20 - 26 Mar 2014 21:21
Having read some of the reviews I am not surprised.

Having an eye for taste and décor and building redevelopment does not mean you have any people skills, have a clue about customer service or managing staff.

The pub will eventually be sold, likely as was the Paxton another past local project by The bridges owners. Lets hope for the community it happens soon as its a great space just run by incredibly arrogant rude people, with a serious attitude problem. the scenario described by the chap who had a service charge added to his bill and then shamed loudly by the bar manager for asking for a refund is absolutely typical - do we really need that kind of petty behaviour from people we're paying good money to?

freebeerforall - 6 Mar 2014 18:51
When the Bridge House reopened in 2008 it was great - a real breath of fresh air for Penge. But in recent months it has really started to go downhill. Don't know if they've changed owner, manager or chef (or all of those) but it is definitely not what it was a year or so ago. The food is more expensive and nowhere near as good - my fave dish was their Thai Green Curry, but when I had it a couple of weeks ago it was swimming in oil. The beer (the real ale at least) is almost always served short measure unless you explicitly ask them to fill the glass and it is virtually impossible to read the pump clips due to the poor lighting at the bar. I haven't (yet) had any particular problems with staff rudeness but the ones they have now are definitely a pretty disinterested (or perhaps demotivated) bunch. I am moving out of the area in a couple of months - two years ago I'd have been very sad to be leaving my 'local', but not so now.
thegoodlead - 23 Aug 2013 15:09
I have recently bought a property in the area and The Bridge House is the closest pub and thus, my new local! I am not sure if management has changed or staff has changed (based on previous comments) but I have been in twice and I think the place is fantastic. The bar and waiting staff are polite, friendly and helpful, 2 of whom immediately greeted me as I walked in and up the stairs to the bar as they were coming down.

The pub itself is really nicely done and the beer garden is huge, well appointed and attractive. I look forward to many long, boozy, summer afternoons in the beer garden.

The only down side (and why it's an 8 not a 10) is it’s not cheap (for the area) but nor is it outrageous and quite frankly, I’m happy to pay for decent atmosphere, decent service and nice clientele. Haven’t tried the food yet but it looked very good.

Looking forward to making this my local boozer and is a refreshing change from the pretentious crap I’m used to in SW.

7945049 - 4 Jul 2013 14:23
Prices from Hampstead, service from Hell.

I have been living in SE20 for about 10 years now and remember first going here when it was painted red, white and blue and a bit spit-and-sawdust. It was nice enough then but a few years back it had a change of management and got a new paint job and a much needed refurb. The beer went up a bit and they started doing £8 burgers and tarting up the beer garden. Was a fairly decent pub by then and I enjoyed visiting quite regularly. The other day I noticed a new paint job and some extra plants and signs about events on the front, thought there must be another change of management. Today I was thinking of somewhere to go for some food and drink and decided to go there. Never again.

We arrived, bought a round and sat down to look at the menu. 1 and half lagers, a bitter and 3 soft drinks - £18.80. I see that food has gone up too, it’s now £12 for a burger. Unfortunately there are no burgers available this day except the vege ones. We order 1 pork belly roast, 2 vege burgers (at £12 each!) and 3 kids meals. The food is ok, but a bit meagre (e.g. 7 chips for a child portion, no salad, mayo in a paper cup etc) and somewhat overpriced for the quality. One interesting new development is that when ordering the food I am asked to provide a card to start a tab. I have never been asked to provide a deposit before when ordering food.

After finishing our food I go to the bar to settle the ‘tab’, now it really starts to go wrong. When it is my turn to be served the bartender says “Who’s next?” There are only 2 of us waiting, surely he must know? I say “I would like to settle this tab please” and hand him the tab card. 2 seconds later, after logging on to the till he says “What was the number of your tab?” Luckily I have looked at the card number and can tell him what it is. Without showing me the bill he presents me with the card reader and says “£58.60”. Thinking this still seems a bit steep I pay the bill and inspect the receipt, I find that 10% has been added for service.

Setting aside the fact that this charge is normal in restaurants but not pubs, I do understand that many establishments now tack a service charge on the bill before they give it to you. However, until now I have found that establishments that add a standard service charge are scrupulous about letting you know about this before you pay your bill.

I say to the bartender,
“You have added 10% to my bill without telling me.”
“Oh, doesn’t it say on the menu?”
I point out that it doesn’t say on the menu or anywhere else. He says
“Well that’s the way it works ‘round here.”

Annoyed already at inflated prices and more so that I have been charged without my agreement I ask him to refund the service charge. Clearly trying to embarrass me he calls loudly across the bar to his manager,
“This guy wants his service charge refunded. And it has to be done right now!”

The manager says nothing to me and starts to refund the money, I say to her,
“You really should let people know before you add on charges.”

She does not reply, but the bartender says,
“Not a tipping kind of guy, eh?”

The thing is I am a “tipping kind of guy”, but I don’t like hidden charges and I don’t like bar staff trying to embarrass me. The manager says nothing about his rudeness and I say that I will not be coming here again. The response-
“I don’t give a f*ck”

jonnym - 1 Jul 2013 02:01
Lovely pub with great service, if a little under-populated when we were there. We had burgers and they were the best chips I've had in months but yes, they are pricey for SE20. Tribute was on the pumps, I forget what else. The pub is on two levels which seems to work well with the upstairs (where the bar is) being livelier with louder music and the downstairs a bit quieter. Moving to the area shortly and will be very pleased to call this my local. There were leaflets on the tables for a regular farmer's market.
blueporcupine - 13 Feb 2013 12:34
Went there last night, pleasent enough place, have never ventured down to Penge before, as you start getting down the hill the neck tattoo count gets a bit high and its kind of off-putting, I dont like to spend evenings picking glass shards out of my face because I looked at somebody wrongly. Few ales on, no more expensive than the Crystal Palace triangle pubs, most people out the back in the large raised beer garden. Food really overpriced, 13 for a burger with a few chips, served on a chopping board, thats just too much. There should be an international convention on burger charging capping it at a tenner. I'd go back, nice mix of folk there, bit like a Benneton advert, didnt sense the ethnic cleansing going on as per a previous review, but didnt know it before hand. Can confirm a woolly man though.
rovers74 - 25 May 2012 16:05
Went to this pub tonight, and having found it quite enjoyable on previous occasions, (Company was Great!) however confirmed to me that the Manager is a Rude Prick..
Totally overpriced drinks for Starters, can get cheaper in central London, without the attitude of the manager, who is a Racist Ignorant Individual.. and unhelpful to boot!
It appears, he is looking at drawing in 'New Clientele' Middle class, and to rid the Pub of Black People!!!!! Fekking Ignoranous!!
Hope he and his Woolly Boyfriend fall flat on their faces, and custom dries up....
People like this, shouldn't be allowed to hold positions dealing with the general public!

MAXNJAX69 - 12 Apr 2012 22:40
So disappointed. Decent crowd for a Tuesday night. Interesting guest beers.

But more expensive than central London
Beer warm
Couldn't read the pump clips as a small designer size and barmade couldn't help.
Modern life is truly rubbish.
baggydave - 7 Sep 2011 23:38
Most of the landlords in Penge look like their pubs; dying on their feet.

The re-opened Bridge Tavern however is making an effort; the beer is served from pipes cleaned more than once every six months and the staff werent recruited from the set of a George Romero film.

Although a bit pricey they have some well kept guest ales.

However they are taking their youthful image a bit literally by letting parents bring their whiney little brats in with them. This is a pub not Teletubby land. Couldnt these trendy mums get their Polish nannies to dump them down the Crystal Palace Dinosaur park?

youngian - 18 Jul 2011 16:51
Went to The Bridge pub for a Sunday Roast today, had read reviews that the food was no longer good but went to give it a try. The staff for the most part are friendly and efficient but the food was such a let down, not only was it not very good quality but the veggie sausages were burnt to black on one side and when we complained the manageress was really rude, told us that there was nothing wrong with the food. She offered us a 20% discount on the food (which we hadn't eaten!), we politely told her we wouldn't be paying for the food and she got very angry at us.

The food is overpriced and poor quality and the staff do not know how to deal with complaints.

eggsmegs - 5 Jun 2011 19:11
We had a lovely Sunday lunch at the Bridge House today, the food was very tasty, portions big and they arrived within 25 mins of ordering which I think is very good for a busy Sunday afternoon. The beer garden is fantastic for sunny days like today and I really liked the decor...will be going back soon as we were chuffed to find such a good pub locally! Might also check out the Thursday night Jazz sometime soon.
smd - 17 Apr 2011 15:11
I completely agree with the previous post for The Bridge. It has a new chef who can't cook, and management who could do with customer services training. It was my favourite pub in the area too - a few months ago it was still great, particularly the food.
We went back there for dinner recently. A bad experience... Firstly the place was only half full on a saturday evening but we waited 40 minutes for any food to reach us.
The size of the prawns had shrunk, and looked like they were out of an Iceland bag - but the price had gone up! So we were paying more for much less in terms of quality and quantity. Really tasteless and way overpriced. Sausage and mash: don't touch unless you really like massive boulders of hard potato and sausage that's pink inside. It was so awful I did something unusual and asked to speak to the manager, who came out and was very stony faced... she basically wasn't interested although she confirmed that the chef had changed recently when I asked. No apology, no mention of a refund or anything. I used to love it but not any more, and we won't be going back. It's a shame.
princesscasino - 12 Nov 2010 15:42
This was my favourite pub in the area until the last time I went. They now have a new chef and unfortunately the quality of the food that is being served has plummeted!! I have always found the staff friendly and helpful and this time they were as friendly as usual and even more helpful when there was plastic found in one of my friend's food. In fact, if the food was the same standard it had been back at the end of Augst this year I would have written a brilliant review and given them a rating of 10.
N.B. Do Not go to this pub to eat unless they change chefs!!!! The meat was dry, the burgers are not even served in anything remotely bun-like (they are served in some sort of pitta/lebanese bread, veggie curry tastes like it is made with powder instead of paste and the difference in flavour is not good, apple crumble had far too much cinnamon in it..... the list goes on. Please please please can we have the previous chef back and their yummy cooking? Please?
gjg - 4 Oct 2010 15:38
great pub, great beer garden and the food that we ate was nice. even the food we didnt order looked and smelt fantastic.
Staff really friendly.
Darren73 - 10 Jul 2010 11:32
I do believe you should update your introductory information on this pub.

This pub has not had karaoke since it flew, phoenix-like, from the ashes of its previous incarnation as a down at heel, rathole.

This pub has been owned three times in five years, to my knowledge and this new Bridge House is the only one I would feel happy and comfortable to take my friends and family to.

There is no karaoke but there is live jazz on a Thursday night. There is also a pub quiz on a Sunday night.

The food is good and, generally, reasonably priced. However, the menu could stand changing more regularly and the 'background' music can be loud and intrusive.

Genrally, the beers seemed kept well and the staf are friendly and polite.

The best pub in the area!
JoshT - 16 May 2010 14:48
I was ordered a 10 Bridge House Burger which was tasteless, overpriced, with dry pickles a terrible floured bun and bought in chips.
The vegeterian burger a portabello mushroom burger for 9.50 which had two of the smallest mushrooms on and I'm highly suspctible that they weren't just field mushrroms and labelled Portabello mushrroms, the portion size and cost that went into this dish is minimal to produce the highest possible gross profit for the owners.
Bread selection and oils is also poor, one selection of bread (hardly much of a selection) and cheap pomace oil usually used in kitchens for cooking, certainly not even a half decent grade of olive oil that should be served for bread or salads.
There is very little care and attention given to the food and I even doubt this review will make the team at The Bridge House Tavern improve the overpriced bland menu, DON'T WASTE YOUR MONEY.
chef1223 - 3 May 2010 12:23
I think this is a really good pub, made to look exceptionally good by the dearth in good quality pubs in the area.
This makes for a simple venue of choice when entertaining in Penge before hitting the workbench back at the Sydenham bungalow.
In brief:
Style: Modern gastro pub design: grand staircase, white walls and exaggerated decorative fittings. Young owners and staff, soul mixtape playing over the speakers. Large beer garden.
Drink: Decent wine list, Youngs ales, and European Lagers on draught and in the fridge.
Food: Sunday roast: 8/10.
Service: Very friendly. Verging on flirtatious.
Jollies: Thursday jazz night. Good live music from a soul-duo covering all the big ones. Female singer is a peach. Good pins.
Sunday night quiz. Well attended.
Executive summary: This is without doubt the best pub in the down the hill from Crystal Palace category. The only real competition coming from the Dulwich Woodhouse (overpriced) and the Dolphin - drastically overpriced/lacks privacy.

Tigs - 30 Apr 2010 15:24
Great pub, lovely food, always a couple of bitters on and the Youngs is usually good. Tastefully over the top decor, and friendly staff. Too middle class for you? Plenty of good boozers on the high street. Not q East Dulwich enough for you? Get on the 176. For me, whether it's for a pint and a paper, a place to meet friends, or somewhere to take visiting relatives for dinner this is pretty much bang on. It's pricier than other pubs round here, but you gets what you pays for, and thank god Penge finally has some variation. The score does not remotely do this justice.
spuddy - 23 Apr 2010 16:48
Hello everyone. My name is Scott and I am the Landlord of Bridge house. Not The Bridge House or the Bridge Tavern!!! I really had to laugh at the review where we were refered to as the Bridge Tavern...
I want to thank all people for posting all comments good and bad on the site as it gives us the oppurtunity to get better.
I am suprised at some comments one particular write up from OBJECTIVE. I find it strange that this person and the whole family were so dissapointed and I didnt hear about it until I logged on by chance.... Usually when a person is that upset my Manager will deal with the situation accordingly....My staff were refered to as helpful and pleasing in most all reviews but yet they didnt come into play with OBJECTIVES bad experiance...Sounds like sour grapes to me?!
I am very proud of the hard working team at BRIDGE HOUSE...We have turned a tired shithole into a good solid local for nice people to appreciate. That took alot of hard work by myself and a team of people....If you dont like our pub OBJECTIVE...than go to a better one..!
We will keep plugging along and keep thanking the nice people that make BRIDGE HOUSE the fab pub that it is growing into...Oh and for those wanting to know...We have a fab BBQ in the permitting and should be soon and also keep posted for our website coming will have info on quiz nite, jazz and other tasty events.
theowner4 - 20 Apr 2010 16:39
This pub is fantantic for Penge. It is lovely inside and has one of the best Sunday rost dinners I've had. Friends come from West London, just to have the roast. I can't understand any of the bad reviews. We live 4 mins from this pub and go there reguarly. The bar staff are always friendly.

Don't have a bad word at all to say about this pub. It is far better than pubs in Crystal Palace.

A must.

acoster - 9 Apr 2010 21:21
I wouldn't review a bad pub but I am familiar with the territory having lived around here for a long while (I went to school nearby) and I know something of the other pubs in the area and was seriously disappointed by this pub.

I hope the people who run the Bridge Tavern are reading this review and others that are pointing out serious failings with their pub/gastropub...

I took my family to this place for the first time recently on the recommendation of a friend. I knew that the owners had run the Mansion in Gipsy Hill - the food there was passable but any shortcomings there were made up for with good beer and an individual approach to the interior deco of the pub. In short The Mansion was pretty charming and worth a punt off and on.

Anyway, on with the review of the Bridge, we ordered a couple of southeast asian themed starters. The roti was pretty lame, basically a stale roti singed under a grill and served with a dip of bland green curry sauce. The satay was indescribably bad with what seemed like reformed chicken with yellow colouring on a stick and a naff peanut sauce e.g. low grade catering pseudo malaysian crap as per the worst thai/malay restaurants. Zero points.

My kids bravely attempted to eat their kids meal of fish fingers etc While my elder son struggled through, my little kid spat the fishfingers out. I tasted them and really, really wish I had not - vile, rank, oily, and bottom grade would be a kind way to describe them. How this place can serve waste products like that to kids is beyond me. So take note those with children - the kids meals here are near poisonous on the basis of this meal so AVOID.

This brings us to the mains...

A reasonable test of modern pub food is a 10 burger. For a tenner you expect a burger that has some flavour, evidence of being freshly chargrilled and decent fries, bun, salad etc What you get served at the Bridge Tavern is this - a totally tasteless patty with a smear of melted cheddar in a crappo bun....and the chips...the chips...waxy, yellow, catering trade deathbolts that stick in your gullet and taste of nothing. Appalling.

I was hoping that this place would serve better food than the Rosendale in West Dulwich, where the bar menu is slightly cheaper, the choice is better and the food is ok but not great.

Sadly, the Bridge Tavern pulls of the spectacular feat of being very bad indeed and more expensive while not being in the posh environs of SE21.

On the plus side it boasts a decent interior (apart from some irritating oxhide stools and circa 1986 wine bar chic in the lower bar) and the staff seem sincere and pleasant. However, the selection of beers seemed tired and expensive.

This place is obviously in 'cream mode' and exploiting the fact that it is the most obvious gastro-type pub south of the park but, really, the food here is very bad, tasteless and overpriced.

Go elsewhere!
objective - 8 Apr 2010 23:34
I met my boyfriend here so maybe I'm biased, but I don't think this pub deserves all the bad reviews it's recieved. True, it's costly when you remember that it's SE20, but no more expensive than a drink or up in town- plus it's local and you don't need to get a train home. The food is really tasty, and though it leans toward expensive the portions are massive and you definately get your moneys worth.
As a woman, it is also far less intimidating to go for drinks here than some of the other male dominated 'local's' around the area, the interior design is really nice and apart from one rather strange bar lady who told my boyfriend and I off for kissing once (clearly not getting any), the staff have always been polite and helpful.
As much as I love a good traditional pub at times, this is a friendly, elegant bar and a brave enterprise in the depths of South East London.
Mixie - 4 Mar 2010 14:47
Badly run, overpriced attempt at a Dulwich gastropub.

Used to pop in for a beer during the afternoon when it first re-opened post refurbishment but the lack of atmosphere, price of beer and finally poor treatment at the hands of the badly trained staff put me off the place for good.

It's all suits and estate agents looking down their noses at a south London accent. I gave them a chance as the Staropramen is usually well kept - but i've recently been refused service in a power cut "because the till doesn't work" even though I was tendering the right money and wanted a bottle. Strange behaviour for a pub clearly struggling for business.

I recently was in with a group of mates from work and was told to shift out of our seats because they were "reserved" (the bar was half empty). There was no sign on the table when we sat down (not that the practise of reserving tables in pubs is in any way acceptable) and they let us get a big round in before telling us. Obviously we took our custom elsewhere and won't be returning. My feeling is that a group of 8 train drivers was a bit too working-class and a bit too multicultural for the stuck-up toffs in there to handle.

It's empty most times I walk past. Hopefully it will shut down soon.
stagger_lee - 13 Dec 2009 19:28
Absolutely awful! Me and my family went for Sunday lunch last week and after a 50 minute wait for a table to small, we waited over 15 minutes to be served!!! The pub didnt employ enough people and the staff who were working there seemed more busy taken orders off the managers than serving the customers. When we finally ordered and the food was brought to the table there were two items missing, my mother in laws roast dinner and sons junior fish fingers. Then to top it for a meal for 6 the bill came to 150 inc the compulsory service charge. Very very poor. I dont normally post these kinda reviews online but after such a bad experience me nor my friends nor family will be revisiting this new overpriced and overhyped pub.
vvja11 - 15 Oct 2009 23:11
Firstly, ignore any reviews prior to March 2008. The pub was closed for a while before that after changing hands, was done up and is now nothing like the previous incarnations of the Bridge House Tavern. So what's it like now? Well, you have to remember this is in Penge, which has not been known for its great pubs. So the 'new' Bridge House is a real bonus for the area. Indeed it's the only pub my wife - who is not normally a pub person - will go in. Okay, the food is a little over priced, and the staff (like so many bar staff these days) have not mastered the skill of serving more than one person at a time, so you sometimes have to wait. But it has a nice atmosphere, the beer is generally good (for real ale drinkers they have Youngs plus one guest beer) and it is certainly very different to any other pub in the area. It's probably not the sort of place you would go out of your way to travel to from a distance, but for me and my friends and neighbours it is a great local.
thegoodlead - 9 Oct 2009 12:05
i've been to the bridge house several times now with my friends and we have always had a great time. we usually go for drinks at the weekend and the staff have always been very friendly and you don't have to go to the bar as they will serve you at your table. love the cocktails! the food always looked good so my friend and i went in for dinner last week and we really enjoyed it. the food was excellent and the service spot on. keep up the good work. wonder if they will be doing a bbq. there are rumours so fingers crossed.
crystalgirl - 10 Jun 2009 21:16
This pub is great for lunch in the day, the outdoor seating area is nice and the food is better than most pubs in the area. It's very child friendly - they are happy to accommodate buggies and staff are really helpful.
mummylovesbubbly - 28 Apr 2009 11:57
AN ABSOLUTE DISGRACE!!! We made a booking to have my girlfriend's Birthday here 4 weeks ago. Since then we have been in in person to confirm the booking where the manager, Tracy, opened the diary in front of us to show us our booking and the area we have reserved. With one week to go my girlfriend received a very rude phone call from a man who didn't say his name but started ranting about our booking being invalid and underhanded. We then rang back asking who this man was only to have Tracy ask us if we're sure we made the booking in the first place. NEVER GO HERE!!!
damo82 - 24 Mar 2009 13:14
We just came back from the Bridge House in Penge... We have given this pub so many chances on food, and evey time, it hasn't failed to completely dissapoint us... Today was the worst as due to the fact that it is a lovely sunny day, we chose to go there for a roast dinner in their garden (and not go to one of the many amazing restaurants in Crystal Palace - those of you who leave in the area you'll know what I mean)... The Bridge House in Penge is the most pretentious, most overpriced and worst value for money pub I have been for a long time... living loally, we have given it so many chances... We have just paid a whopping 27.40 for 2 roast dinners and 1 half pint (my partner didn't drink). We knew that we shouldn't hold our breath on the quality of food, but I didn't expect it to be that bad... This really expesnive roast dinner looked like puke on a plate, literally... Soaked in what looked like bad immitation gravy and a white horseradishy sauce all over, it came cold, veggies (or rather cabbages and carrots) were disgusting and soggy, potatoes were horrible, and the only thing that saved it a bit was the meat not being completely overcooked... I feel that I have been taken for a ride... It hasn't only put me off going to that pub back again, it has put me off roast dinners in general for a while...
DON'T GO THERE FOR ROAST DINNER!! For a 13 a plate, you expect some quality and not the pretentious totally tasteless food we were just been served.
---And those of you that think that my comment may be biased, I reassure you, it is not. I'm a food lover and I love all places good, I would not argue that other pubs server better food, but hey! it's one thing paying 7.95 at a pub in Crystal Palace and the roast dinner is 'ok', and it's another paying 13 at the Bridge and the roast dinner being that disgustingly bad... What a flop, what a waste of time and money...
theo_jones - 22 Mar 2009 15:25
This place is definitely an improvement for Penge however I just can't bring myself to like it that much. It's far too noisy with a constant stream of annoying bar music that makes it hard to hear. The beer is ok, three quid a pint. Didn't try the food although it looks tasty. The seats and tables downstairs are really annoying too, very high stools and wobbly tables, far to close to each other. Good decoration though, and the bar staff are police and friendly. Just please turn the blasted music down!
anonymous - 23 Feb 2009 18:09
Fantastic addition to the area. The earlier comment about the food being 'Weatherspoons like' prompted my comment, I've tried most of the menu over the past 6 months and whilst its a tad pricey, its normally great (had the lamb pie the other day and it was superb!) and the service is almost always top draw.

I would say that it does feel a bit like a confused cross between a restaurant and a pub, not helped by its layout - but its still a good spot for a meal and a few drinks. Would definitely recommend it.
amrtmr - 4 Jan 2009 16:58
I thoroughly agree with Garlando5!

This pub is a fantastic addition to the area and is a much more attractive proposition than many of the other local pubs.

The food is delicious, the choice of drinks is good, it's well priced, the atmosphere is warm and friendly and the staff are helpful. What more can you ask for?

I regularly meet friends in here and we've never been disappointed.

Definitely worth a visit!

Also there are some great photograph canvasses on the wall by Neil Williams who has a stall in Dulwich.

juicieju - 30 Dec 2008 12:29
Sorry but it's obvious that all the previous posts are by the proprietors or associates of those proprietors of the rival establishments in the area who've obviously seen a downturn in business since this great place opened. It's an enormously welcome arrival in an otherwise sub standard social area. If anyone can bear to remember what a waste of space the previous incarnation of the Bridge House Tavern was (I think referred to as The Railway Tavern) although you'd rather get run over than face the 'gangs' that went in there. The atmosphere I've always found to be sophisticated and easygoing. I was very much a champion of The Mansion (which since is the pinnacle of trying to be somewhere it's not unoriginal, standard fare) and found the staff very willing to please. I've never had anything to complain about the quality of the food and speaking as someone who regularly eats within the W1 and Primrose Hill area, is qualified to know what they like and refer to as a good standard of food. How very disappointing it is to find so many people willing to kick a very positive uplift for the community but actually, these rather damning comments don't seem to have put off the people who flock there and the doors are still bulging....hurrah!!!!
Garlando5 - 22 Dec 2008 16:48
This pub is really bad! It pretends to be a gourmet pub, but it is just a cheap imitation. The food is horrible (weatherspoons like). The jazz band that plays on Thursdays is also really bad.

Don't ever go there. You should instead go to the White Hart in Crystal Palace.
amendeo - 3 Oct 2008 12:19
The area really needs a good pub that sells good beer. I have tried the Youngs Special three times and it has always been kept so badly that it was not drinkable. I was told, in a very patronising way, the first time that thats how the beer is supposed to taste. I tried the food last night; it took 48 minutes to arrive and my starter came with the main course! Instead of making me a new main course they put it under a lamp in the kitchen for 20 minutes while I ate the starter. This ruined the meal. The prices are extortionate, the beer is bad, the staff are rude; go to the Dulwich Woodhouse instead!
MrPC - 4 Jul 2008 09:15
We went to the Bridge House for the first time yesterday and must say we were very pleasantly surprised! It is about time Penge got a "nice" bar/restaurant and the big beer garden and covered smoking area is an added bonus. It made us wonder where all the people that were there yesterday used to go. The only negative thing we would mention is that it's a bit pricey but then I suppose you expect to pay for quality. Can't comment on the food as we haven't tried it yet but intend to eat there in the near future. We are not snobs but lets hope this is the start of a bit more up-market establishments for Penge. It would be great to have more of these sort of bars and restaurants and less pound shops, hairdressers and takeaways! Penge is definitely long overdue a "face lift" so lets hope this is the start of the regeneration!
meerkat1 - 16 Jun 2008 16:40
Thought this would be a nice place, especially as this is owned by the people that have The Rye in peckham (which may i add had seriously gone downhill) and the mansion in gipsy hill (which has so much improved since the new owners took it over)
A group of us went a few Sundays ago for lunch. Apart from having to take out a second mortgage, we all came home with food poisoning and were violently ill for the next week (had nothing to doo with beer - 2 of us were on soft drinks).
Had such a long wait for the food to arrive (nearly an hour) and even then it was sent back cos it was cold in the middle. Had to wait for it to come back out (think they zapped it in the microwave) and was just about edible. Certainly wished we'd just walked out (would have saved a fortune on immodium!). Perhaps this place should be reported to Environmental Health.

Was ignored at the bar for what seemed like an eternity, until the staff were finally bothered to stop chatting and serve.

All in all, we won't be going back and would urge others to think carefully before going in there. You could seriously risk your health (not to mention the extortionate prices and the impact on your wallet).

It just seems like the owners want to grab your cash and couldn't care less about the consequences when you complain.

My recommendation? Find somewhere else, anywhere. This place is not worth risking your health for.
hairbearbunch - 4 Jun 2008 13:21
local lady & slade 1105 i so agree with your comments. They made me so welcome and thanks for making us feel so much a part of things, i did not realise so many like wise people lived in Penge, and they are amazing. I think i have seen that "CLOUD" and i think obviously they must be doing something good as this place is great for this area. Please don't make it the next clapham!
kintycourt - 31 May 2008 01:02
Wow I was there a few weeks ago, same as you local lady! I thought this was going to be amazing, knowing it was the people from the Mansion. On first look it seems ok, but after spending some time in there you realise that the friendly staff are ruled by an iron hand and there is some kind of cloud over them. An hour later that cloud walked in, some guy who seemed to think he was the heart and soul but actually took the heart and soul out, what a shame.
Slade1105 - 31 May 2008 00:27
I used to go to the mansion quite alot, purely because the staff and food was so great, but when i found out they were opening in Penge i was over the moon. This meant i did not have to take that HUGE treck up and down the hill to it. So this became my local and loved every time i ventured into it. Okay sometimes there was a wait on food but the staff/management were so good about it i did not care. I was away for a bit and came back to find alot of new faces that gave me no care/service that i used to recieve. Not saying i'm special but it meant alot. There is now a guy running the place instead of that great girl, who was always nice to me and my friends. He just seemed like he didn't care. I hope they sort this out otherwise i might have to do that stupid treck up and down that hill to the mansion.
locallady - 18 May 2008 03:59
Popped in for Sunday lunch, had to try out my local!

Would be advisable to book a table, we only just got one - the majority had reserved signs on them.

Food was very good and quick, staff pretty out going and friendly. Managed to scrub the place up something nice, only thought it was a tad expensive, but would go back for sure. Am trying an evening experience next time.
pengegirl - 19 Mar 2008 14:17
This pub has just been fully refurbished by the people who transformed THE MANSION in Gypsy Hill.
This has got to be a step in the right direction for Penge...
alextesta - 18 Mar 2008 16:47
Agree with the last review, the place could be a bloody great local but the management don't seem to give a damn. The last 3 times I've been in there I've walked out twice leaving a virtually full pint - either the barmaid decided to crank up the r'n'b crap to an ear bleeding level to entertain her and her mate or there were kids mucking about behind the bar and staff having a row about it with each other.
This place had so much promise when Carol took over but just never delivered which was a shame, she tried. It's either going to end up as a boarded up shell waiting to be turned into housing association flats or another poncey bloody gastro pub. For Christ's sake, why can't I have a decent boozer on my doorstep for once? It's not much to ask is it?
anonymous - 15 Jul 2007 18:58
This pub has got great potential but it never really seem to get there! It's a Great building and a good location but the landlords seem to come and go and overall the pub looks old and tired. What a shame. It never seems to be full - just a handful of sad drinkers.
Penge71 - 5 Jun 2007 23:25
heard a rumour that the owner of the rye hotel in peckham and the mansion in gypsy hill was going to take this place on for a re-furb job - anyone know anything about that? i never like to see old boozers played around with, but penge is critically short of at least some variety in its pubs, so watching this one with interest. in the meantime can anyone recommend ANYWHERE in penge where you could take a non-pikey girl for a drink without her getting leered at by someone selling meat and dodgy perfume?
anonymous - 4 May 2007 11:19
Hope the BH is doing well nowadays. Coming to see whats up in two weeks time... youll be surprised ;)
Rocks - 29 Jun 2006 11:25



djstroke - 23 Mar 2006 10:35
Open 24th March! New Lines, New Beer, New Look!

Go and see for yourself!

anonymous - 23 Mar 2006 10:20
Worth a visit as there's new staff, new ideas, and it's all been updated.

Opening night 17th February should be a good laugh with a live DJ. Who a few old faces will recognise.

Hope to see you there!

kel0483 - 5 Feb 2006 22:29
The Bridge House will be opening on ...17th February...!

I've herd there will be a live DJ and some special offers.

Hope to see all the old regulars and a few new faces down there!

JimVolt - 5 Feb 2006 22:19
Have herd tThe Bridge will be re-opening!
I'm REALLY pleased. Can't wait to go for my after work pint again.
Great location, the new management seem to be very busy getting this place ready for the opening at the end of this month...GOOD LUCK to them!
anonymous - 2 Feb 2006 22:07
Ive been drinking there for years and has always been a good place where you can have a goodtime whether with mates or with your bird. But in 2005 went down hill due to the owners changing managment. It has been closed for a few months now but i heard it is reopening with GOOD MANAGEMENT as i now them. Should be back up as one of the best pubs in london again by the end of 2006.
Fuzz - 24 Jan 2006 13:09
Not surprised to see this place closed down at present. I first discovered it around 18 months ago when I had an excellent pint of London Pride served by a welcoming Antipodean lady who I presumed to be the manager. I never saw her again, the beer quality became less impressive on subsequent visits and was completely undrinkable the last time. A barmaid had to call the landlady to change a barrel and she clearly didn't have a clue, peering at a pint resembling stagnant pond water and wondering "is it supposed to look like that?"
Rich66 - 15 Jan 2006 15:30
They're getting better!

Got some good deals going on doubles etc now and if your a local its worth a laugh!

Having Pool competitions now.

Good place to go if you fancy a beer after work!
anonymous - 9 Mar 2005 09:39
Used to be very well run. But just lately is slacking! Beer stinks and tastes foul! Good evening entertainment with the bands, karaoke etc. But thats about all... only venture here if your have notes in your pocket and drink from bottles.
skittles - 21 Feb 2005 16:22

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