Brewski Time: The Haute 5 Beer Lists in London

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For centuries beer and London have gone hand-in-hand. Some of our oldest pubs are said to date back to the fourteenth century which was also around about the same time that the Brewers Company of London released a statement that an, “ale shall be made—but only [with] liquor (water), malt, and yeast.” To put it simply: London knows its beers.

If you’re looking for a good pint you won’t have to look far but if you’re looking for a great pub with an outstanding selection of beers, ales, and regional brews, the best thing you can do is follow the locals. Marie Teather does just that.

1 The White Pony

The White Pony undoubtedly tops the list for any serious fan of beer and ale. Similarly, for those who just prefer to see and be seen, this iconic pub set in the heart of Parson’s Green makes a great spot for people watching some of London’s public school ale aficionados. Known locally as the Sloany Pony, the pub makes regulars of beer fans with its large number of cask ales, imported keg beers from destinations around the world, and a selection of bottled beers and ales that includes many rare and vintage examples of world classics.

1-3 Parson’s Green

London, SW6 4UL

020 7731 2183

2 The Lamb & Flag

Beyond the tourist throng, Covent Garden comes up trumps again for pubs thanks to it rich history of local market traders. At over 300 years old, the oldest pub in Covent Garden has seen its regulars through bad times and good. Indeed The Lamb & Flag used to be known as the Bucket of Blood because of the bare-fist fights that were held here. Today drinking at The Lamb & Flag is a much tamer affair. Set between two narrow streets that can be deceivingly tricky to find for those unfamiliar with the area, this irregular shaped, two-floored bar offers a varied selection of beers. If the beer doesn’t keep you here all night, the stories from throughout the years will.

33 Rose Street

Covent Garden


London WC2E 9EB

020 7497 9504

3 The Jerusalem Tavern, Farringdon

tepping into The Jerusalem Tavern is what stepping into Harry Potter’s wizardly world must feel like. To say the pub is in a bit of a time warp is an understatement and the whole atmosphere feels not to be part of the 20th century—let alone the 21st. Still this tiny discrete pub has been keeping regulars happy throughout the years and still gets crowded today. Dropping by during winter months presents another charm—a real roaring fire in the grate at the front. History buffs will love that the Tavern has occupied several sites in the area since the 14th century and the current building dates from 1720. Those there for the beer will enjoy the great selection of beers on draught.

55 Britton Street


London, EC1M 5U

020 7278 1022

4 Red Lion

Quite simply this is one of London's most magnificent pubs. The Red Lion on Duke of York Street, is a classic example of haute Victorian pub design and a shrine to the Victorian craftsmans' long lost skills. Dazzling and intricate brilliant-cut mirrors cover the walls that sparkle as they catch the light and the central bar island is made from a rich polished mahogany, adding to wonderfully garish appeal of the place. With a great selection of regular and seasonal ales The Red Lion is a real must on any visitor's list.

2 Duke of York Street

St. James's

London, SW1Y 6J

020 7321 0782

5 The Harp, Covent Garden

A small, independent free house that attracts those who like to pick from a wide choice of ales before supping on their pints. True to classic London pub form, this narrow bar is covered with mirrors, theatrical memorabilia, and portraits and is devoid of loud music or TVs. A real local’s haven from the crowds outside.

47 Chandos Place

Covent Garden

London, WC2N 4HS

020 7836 0291

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