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Crown, Bloomsbury

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user reviews of the Crown, Bloomsbury

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

This used to be my work local many many moons ago. I cannot remember the last time I visited but it’s at 15 years ago maybe even more!

A Samuel Smiths pub and as in the norm all of drinks are from their own range, very pleased to drink and of report that the Sovereign bitter was on good form. One of my favourite ales, not the most exciting but always dependable.

Busy inside and out, barely a standing space inside and no seats outside available, the weather was good but being a Sam Smith’s pub it’s the price of the drinks that will bring and keep punters here as it’s cheap for Central London.

Good attentive and quick service, nice untouched décor, good location and good ales….what is there to complain about with the Crown.
lezford - 14 Oct 2016 11:56
Cosy, relaxing atmosphere with efficient and friendly service. Excellent value and quality food. Usual wide range of Sam Smith's beers. A must visit when in this area. 10/10.
wobblybob - 26 Sep 2014 21:58
Went to the Crown yesterday afternoon and evening. A no nonsense traditional pub that doesn't have to advertise on a-boards outside that it is a traditional pub. Went to the Princess Louise nearby afterwards too for a look at something more ornate. I'd happily return to the Crown when in London.
worldged - 1 Dec 2013 12:27
Pleased to say I popped in Yesterday afternoon and this hidden gem is back to its best,great service,great landlords and always a good atmosphere...go there! Oh and the grubs good to.
jackbar - 27 Jun 2012 14:40
We went into this pub on Friday and want to say that the lady behind the bar was so kind and friendly to some of my friends who struggle to speak English. There were 12 of us and she called the Spanish barman (hot!) from upstairs to come downstairs to serve us. We sat outside and came inside later. There are few places in London where we can sit outside and enjoy the weather (when it's good). We are students and think this place's prices are reasonable (used to be cheaper, but hey! London isn't cheap). We are going back to the pub on Friday night.
realaletrawler - 26 Jun 2012 10:52
In last night for a few Jars and has now gone off the scale as far as bad service is concerned.
For ever to get served even tho the place was half empty,Piles of dirty glasses outside,overflowing ashtrays,gents disgusting,no toilet paper in the ladies.
The local tramps were drinking the left over drinks and as we were sat outside we were approached by beggars half a dozen times in two hours,not a problem just a pain in the butt and to be fair the local hobos are more polite than the bar staff.
A real shame because this is a super pub, we went across the road to the god awful all bar one...enough said!
jackbar - 9 Jun 2012 11:06
Despite excellent previous review im sad to report that the staff have gone down hill, shame really as still an excellent pub but some real dopey staff behind the bar instead of excellent landlord make getting served .......lets say an experience!
jackbar - 8 Jun 2012 13:16
Stopped on a crawl today,worst pub of the day by a considerable margin. Young lad fiddling with his hair behind the bar didn't even greet us on arrival as too busy chatting to his soppy female friends, place was otherwise empty despite being a bank holiday,and raining! The whole pub clearly,and overwhelmingly,stunk of bad drains/sewerage. Presume Sam Smiths have given up on this one as the excellent Princess Louise is only 100yds up the road. Avoid.
LondonWolf - 5 Jun 2012 22:43
I am currently sitting upstairs resentfully drinking a 3.40 pint of extra stout -- the most I have ever paid fore anything at a Sam Smith's pub.

Anyway, when I ordered I asked "do you have any milds?" (Because I haven't yet memorised ever beer that Sam Smith makes.) The response I got was "A what?" I repeated, a mild. "What's that?" she asked.

Enough said.
SamAdams - 31 May 2012 19:10
We went to this lovely little pub in the heart of London over the weekend and must say we were treated with good old fashioned hospitality. The landlady and landlord were in attendance and went out of their way to make us feel welcome. It is obvious they love what they do and are very proud of the company they work for and the products they sell. We are big Sam Smith's fans and despite the price increases, 2.71 for a pint of ale is still a steal in the big smoke! We recommend The Crown to anyone who just doesn't want to be another number - it's like Cheers - where everybody knows your name. What a brilliant atmosphere and we will be back this coming weekend. Top marks to Team Crown!
jacksonjilly - 19 Mar 2012 00:44
Bounded into The Crown at 6.59 on 02/03/12 accompanied by my new Belgian friends Jens and Benard. SUBLIME half of Old Brewery Bitter in convivial surroundings. My rating of 10/10 remains!
Newton_Lad - 4 Mar 2012 18:43
The reviewer below is correct ,this is a regular haunt of mine and Angela and Ron (new landlords) are a delight.
The usual Sam Smiths stuff ,well kept ale,great prices for this part of town and a good mix of clients such as students,nutty proffesors,suits,thearte goers from some northern mining village and some very pretty girls.
Bar staff are friendly and superbly efficent as it gets rammed on a Friday evening but you will still get served,lovely small terrace to the rear with a few seats.
Best pub and far and away the best landlords in this part of town,
you should go there!!
jackbar - 11 Feb 2012 13:36
I happen to know that a new landlord and landlady will be taking over this pub this week and they used to be where I currently drink and I can say the punters there are very lucky as they will get a good pint and very honest to goodness tasty grub from now on All the best Ange and Ron and good luck for the future

susie.p - 9 Jan 2012 22:47
Good quality beer at reasonable prices. A great place for a leaving do, especially when your boss is buying the first round.
whitedw6 - 4 Feb 2011 16:32
Sam Smiths pub of which there a few round here - nice traditional interior although not quite the Sam Smiths prices you get elsewhere. Ok for a quick late one but I don't ever see myself arranging a full night here.
murgatroyd - 28 Jun 2009 19:11
Great pub - if it weren't for the fact that (as always) it only sells SS beers it would be perfect.
Dan137 - 6 Sep 2008 20:22
Love the Pub , the best wiskey sours !
Canadian33 - 28 Jul 2008 12:39
How can a Sam Smith's pub this busy not serve 'real' Old Brewery Bitter on handpump? The keg version is still cheap, but I suggest going to the nearby Angel or Princess Louise instead... Disappointing.
rpadam - 29 Feb 2008 23:08
Pretty good. Nice and quiet on a saturday afternoon, with light flooding in through the windows. One of the barmen from the French House was sat in the corner. Didn't see him crack a smile here, either.

Thank God for Sam Smith's - like their beer or not, their approach to pubs is a buffer against the rising tide of mediocrity.
Albert_Campion - 9 Sep 2007 00:42
Good food. Friendly staff. Handy for where I work.

They only have keg beers, but still, it's cheap so mustn't grumble too much.
edrok666 - 10 Dec 2006 09:42
It's not the best SS pub by a long way but it is still a decent little place to get a drink and space to sit outside, which you don't get everywhere. I wouldn't go out of your way to make a visit. Better than next door and a good place to pop in if you are planning on buying an umbrella!!!
mitomighty - 13 Oct 2006 20:26
A Sam Smiths pub that was an unexpected find. Was full of tourists, far more than the usual Sam Smiths outfit.

Was OK, but there are better SS pubs in the centre.
TheGP - 17 Sep 2006 11:15
... and I meant to say, Sam Smith's pubs don't in my experience attract a down and out Wetherspoons crowd. Rather, the lack of recognisable brands from macro brewers tends to put more ignorant punters off. If you look at the reviews of the London SS pubs on this site, you will consistently see a smattering of comments from berks complaining that they couldn't get a pint of Stella/Guinness/Carlsberg or whatever rancid concoction they normally shove down their neck.
anonymous - 31 Aug 2006 12:57
I disagree, this is a relatively friendly little pub (consider its location for a moment) and I think the refit was superb. The tables out back are a pleasant place to sit in summer.

Putting the absence of cask beer aside for a moment, there is always something here you'll want to drink - personally I find the wheat beer and pure brewed lager on tap perfectly drinkable, and the taddy porter and imperial stout in bottles sublime.
anonymous - 31 Aug 2006 12:55
Typical Sam Smith's pub that seems to attract the local "Wetherspoons" type crowd of almost down and outs and other oddballs - all because the beer's cheap!!
smudger69 - 31 Aug 2006 11:27
Quiet Sam Smiths wood paneled & partitioned pub in odd area between Theatre-land and British Museum. New Oxford Street one side, and a deserted sun-less concrete piazza on the other. Acceptable, and not without charm, but difficult to recommend.
SilkTork - 7 May 2006 21:54
For a while, in 1979 [whilst working in London], I used to use this pub fairly regularly.
It was a comfortable place, with all sorts in there. Prices and service were good enough to keep me coming back. Didn't like the 'Old Crown'nearby [remember, this as a generation ago!].
The 'Crown' had a pub cat then, too.
A huge tabby, beautiful, but with no excess weight - about twenty-odd pounds of pure muscle; huge shoulders, and a small waist; think Muhammad Ali in his absolute prime - with claws.
(Does this date me - might do, might do ....)

Perfectly [Purrfectly??!] at home with patrons, The Cat walked up and down the [only] bar as if it owned the place. I suppose it did, in a way - I certainly wouldn't have drunk there if that adolescent tiger had taken a dislike to me.
You know - "Dogs have Masters; Cats have servants"?

I think it's still the biggest 'house' cat I've ever seen. Not one to be tangled with.

Don't know if anyone else remembers The Cat - or the night, in 1979, that a little old bloke with a chihuahua came in, and The Cat just looked at it from the bar - scared of geting the spider on a string stuck between its teeth, I suppose.
Utterly disdainful, despite the awful yapping coming from the little dog.

Not much later, a smoothie macho-man type, with a large [faux-]gold medallion and a waistcoat, but no shirt, came in; he had an Alsatian on a lead. An extremely noisy Alsatian.
It terrorised the chihuahua, chasing it up the little dog's master's trouser leg, both dogs barking all the time with the chihuahua going Ryeap-yreip, and the Alsatian going Wruff-ruff-WROUFF.
The Cat heard this deeper tone, and presumably thought dinner, and all its Xmases, had come at once.
It wove its way down the bar, and, pausing only briefly, jumped on the poor chihuahua-terrorising Alsatian, using all four clawed feet and its teeth.
Terrible to see - but not as terrible as being on the receiving end [I guess].
The Alsatian stood stock stilland stone-silent for about half a heartbeat, then left, precipitately - more than precipitately! Fortunately the swing door swung out, otherwise there would have been a dog-shaped hole in it.
Well, dog-and-medallion-man-shaped hole, really, as the lead had been wound about three times round his wrist. I looked to see if he'd left his shoes [like in the cartoons] but - no!
He had certainly left in a hurry, and I doubt if he really touched down for sixty yards [55 metres for the younger amongst you].
The Cat looked at the chihuauhua, as if to say, "That's how to deal with Alsatians!".

I was absolutely sure then - I certainly wouldn't have drunk there if that adolescent tiger had taken a dislike to me.

I never saw macho-man in there again - or the chihuahua!

Did The Cat move to Bodmin - or Exmoor???!

The beers [and other drinks] were fine; so I was happy to use it regularly .....

So long ago, I'm not going to rate it [although then it would go an easy 7; even an 8, perhaps] - so, no rating.
railtracksurvivor - 13 Apr 2006 21:35
A Sam Smiths pub so its good or bad depending on your tastes. I have no problem with Sam Smiths products and it makes a change from the usual formulaic beers of the other chains. They have no hand pump bitters here although the cask version of the Old Brewery bitter I always find perfectly drinkable and often wonder if there is any difference between them. 3 separate drinking areas partitioned by wooden screens. Not a very big pub and can get very busy at peak times but there is an outside drinking area when the weather permits and this makes a handy overspill. A few old pictures and cartoons on the walls alongside a clock purloined from Paddington station and some nice old traditional tiling on the exterior but overall, not a particularly interesting establishment, especially by Sam Smiths standards.
RogerB - 9 Apr 2006 23:57
Not been here for a couple of years - it has been gutted and refitted very well. A traditional pub interior broken into two lounge areas with a central standing bar area. Great recreation of a Victorian pub.

Really liked it here on a Saturday night. Great mix of punters including a guy with an eastern european escort with huge tits. Two bar staff (aussie girl, polish guy) coped astonishly well with a busy pub on their own and were brilliant.

With the addition of the wonderful Pure Brewed Lager Sam Smith's pubs are now great value.
anonymous - 19 Feb 2006 15:47
Usual Sam Smiths cheap, nasty beer. Nice pub though and friendly staff.
charlottetwo - 2 Sep 2005 19:44
I like this pub. It's a Samuel Smith's pub - Samuel Smith's Old Brewery Bitter is quite nice, as is Ayingerbru Hefe-Weisse.
edrok666 - 21 Aug 2005 14:27
Noooo... not another pub undergoing refurbishment! Hopefully this won't be character removing like the Windmill in Fitzrovia and the Goldsmith's in New Cross. The changes wreaked there were devastating. Fingers crossed for this place.
csmall09 - 6 Jan 2005 08:47
As a student and traveler I frequented this pub A LOT. So much that they gave me a job so I got to work and live in my favorite London pub!
I have some great memories and was very upset to hear its under going refurbishment. It won't be the same, but I will still be there when they open their doors next summer!
polkadottie - 10 Dec 2004 21:57
This is my favourite pub in London. Very cosy with a nice interior, and the staff are lovely. Very hard to find cheaper beer in London too! Hooray for Samuel Smith's!
Larry - 19 May 2004 15:25
brilliant pub, great staff and lovely manger.foods great and so are the drinks 10/10
stacie - 7 Dec 2003 18:42
Nice old style pub, serving non standard beer - Prinz at 6% is looney juice. Some dregs outside, but generally dont bother customers. Smoky inside and not much room.
Dermot - 4 Dec 2003 19:41
Absolutely my favourite london pub, cheap lager that tastes good, cosy interior which is great in the winter and the staff are all gorgeous ;P
Pippi Longstocking - 30 Nov 2003 20:26
I have a lot of good memories of this place. Cheapish beer as it's a Sam Smith's pub. Loads of seats outside and if you don't like being harrassed just tell them to bugger off. It's never been a problem for me! Friendly staff. Ace.
Chris - 28 Nov 2003 16:00
great stout in fact in my mind the best
dave maughan - 26 Sep 2003 18:40
Cosy pub on the quiet side of central London. Smallish main area, and fenced off seating at outside at the back. I have no amusing anecdotes about this place whatsoever.

Good if you want to get a seat.
Ruby - [email protected] - 9 Aug 2003 19:15

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