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London Gastropubs – The Princess of Shoreditch

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76–78 Paul Street, London, EC2A 4NE

‘The Princess’ is the award winning Gastropub in Shoreditch clearly demonstrates that in the best Gastropubs you get the best of all worlds, a great pub and a great dining area all in  the same place

Refurbished in 2010 The  270 year old pub was refurbished in 2010 and has a downstairs bar which is available to both drinkers and diners alike and a walk up the spiral staircase leads you to the dining room.

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Food is sourced locally if possible, and meat is sourced from quality producers around the UK.

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Starters may include Chilled tomato & basil soup, Smoked haddock & salmon fishcake, poached egg, bearnaise  and Cod cheek scampi with wild garlic aioli .

Mains may include Chargrilled mackerel fillets, wild garlic, new potatoes & green sauce, or Trio of Kentish lamb; cutlet, rump & Shepherds pie, roasted carrots and Chart Farm venison haunch, Portobello mushroom & asparagus tart, split cherry tomato jus.

Desserts include Apple & rhubarb crumble, custard, or Chocolate fondant, vanilla ice cream  and Sticky toffee pudding, toffee sauce, vanilla ice cream.

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The Princess of Shoreditch has an extensive wine list and is well known for its Craft ales.

Opening Hours:

Monday to Saturday: Midday–11pm
Sunday: Midday–10.30pm

Kitchen Opening Hours:

Monday–Friday: Midday–3pm / 6.30pm–10.00pm
Saturday: Midday–4pm / 6.30pm–10.00pm
Sunday: Midday–9pm

BAR MENU

Tuesday–Friday: until 5.30pm

For more information , visit the Princess of Shoreditch Website here

Book Review : A London Pub For Every Occasion by Herb Lester Associates

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One of the pleasures of living in London is the range of London Pubs that are available, even the most ardent pub crawler would hardy make a dent on covering the estimated 7000 pubs in the Greater London area.

Pub guides are nothing new but are generally concerned with the quality of the beer or  the architecture and history of the pub itself.

A London Pub for Every Occasion is concerned with such things but is more concerned by whether the pub suits your particular mood or needs.

So we get recommendations for pubs to go to on a sunny or a rainy day, somewhere to meet before a show or a trip to a museum, somewhere to chat with friends or if you want to be on your own.

The writer confess his preference for “pubs with real ale, real fires and little or no music; for friendly staff ,dim light and a couple of animals roaming around” but suggest that the selections are based on “dogged research filtered through these prejudices.”

If you get the impression that it was written by a grumpy old man in a quiet pub who likes to stare at his pint and glowers at anyone enjoying themselves, you will be relieved to learn that the reviews of the pubs are actually light and whimsical.

In the section, It’s not too early is it ?, the writer recommends the Simpson Tavern because ” if breakfast in a tavern appeals, but perhaps without the aroma of last night’s slops, at this remarkably unaltered 18th century establishment you can tuck into a full English.”

In the section, When you just want to be alone, our intrepid drinker is in the Fox and Hounds in Chelsea it is “a single room hostelry decorated with junk shop finds. From somewhere above comes the sound of barking dogs, on the top of a bookcase stands a stuffed fox, the barmaid politely but firmly informs a family peering though the door that their licence forbids children. All is serene.”

In the nearest thing to a favourites section, Because there’s nowhere you’d rather be,  we find ourselves at the Three Kings near Farringdon ” it is remarkably ramshackle ,with outlandish décor (the rhino head is unmissable), quiz nights and an air of bonhomie.”

It is within this tone, that the book sweeps though 161 London Pubs giving snapshots of history, quality of beer, ambience  and habits of the locals . The amusing and slightly offbeat illustrations match the text with their attention to many of the pubs interiors and exteriors.

At the back of the book there is a handy fold up map which charts the areas and locations of the pubs.

If any London visitor wants to understand the British or London character they perhaps should study this book and then visit some of the pubs and meet the locals.

This unusual and entertaining guide is the type of book in which to read in a quiet pub, smiling to yourself whilst occasionally staring at your pint and glowering at anyone enjoying themselves.

Visiting London Guide Rating  – Highly Recommended

If you would like to buy a copy of the book visit the Ebury press website here

Great London Pubs – Ye Olde Mitre (Holborn)

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Ye Old Mitre (Holborn)

Location – 1 Ely Court, Ely Place, London, EC1N 6SJ

One of the best kept secrets of London is the unusual cul-de-sac of Ely Place, on this street is the former residences of the Bishops of Ely and Queen Elizabeth the First favourite Sir Christopher Hatton.

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The alley entrance to the pub

Just off Ely place is an historic pub called the Ye Old Mitre.There was a pub on this site since 1546 but was remodelled in the 1780s.

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It could be argued the pub has a place in history due to the preserved tree trunk in the corner of the bar that marked it  the boundary of Hatton Garden and the Diocese of Ely. Around this tree Queen Elizabeth is said to have danced with Sir Christopher Hatton. There is an argument that the Ely Place and the pub are not part of London at all but owned by the Diocese of Ely and therefore still part of Cambridgeshire. Allegedly the London Metropolitan Police have to get permission to enter Ely Place which has it own officer (Beadle) watching for wrongdoers.

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Walking down the alley to the pub seems like you are walking back in time and the pub surrounded by high walls gives it a preserved in time effect, the skulls in the window add to the slightly strange atmosphere.

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Once inside, the pub does not disappoint, old pictures, bottles on the walls and mugs on the ceilings and the old furniture gives the impression of a place seeping in history. The bars are small and intimate and lend themselves to conversation with the staff and fellow drinkers.

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Upstairs is a small room with old furniture called the Bishop’s room acknowledging its connection with residences nearby. Real ales are on tap and bar snacks are available. Like many interesting City pubs, Ye Old Mitre is closed at weekends, however this is certainly on pub to go out of your way to discover.

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Film buffs may recognise the pub by its appearance in Snatch and the Deep Blue Sea.

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Great London Pubs – The Cittie of Yorke

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Cittie of Yorke
Location 22 High Holborn, Holborn, Camden, London WC1V 6BN

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This has been the site of a pub since the 15th century, the present pub was redeveloped in the 1920s but has elements from previous incarnations. This gives the Cittie of Yorke a strange and rather surreal interior, the main bar is under a vast ceiling that feels that you are in medieval Great hall rather than a pub. The bar itself sits below large vats.

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In the main bar is Victorian cubicles, which lawyers apparently held meetings with their clients. Another strange feature is a traingular 19th century stove that stands in the middle of the bar. The cellar bar is in a much older part of the Pub and is yet another feature of this Grade II listed pub.

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It is safe to say that this pub is unique in London for its eclectic and rather strange interior.

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For a list of London’s Top Ten Pubs go to Visiting London Guide.

Great London Pubs – The Princess Louise

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Princess Louise

Location – 208-209 High Holborn, London WC1V 7BW.

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Considered one of the finest Victorian Pub interiors in London, The Princess Louise is situated in High Holborn but near to Bloomsbury. Although the outside of the pub is unremarkable, walking through the doors is like entering a Victorian world frozen in time. The first surprise is series of booths surrounding the bar, each booth is large enough for around 8 – 10 people. Each booth has wood panelling and glass partitions, whilst the larger bars have wonderfully tiled interiors.

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The pub has a Grade II listing and unusually even the men’s toilets with their marble urinals are listed. The Pub is owned and run by the Samuel Smith Brewery who sell their own beer which is considerably cheaper than most other pubs in London.

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The Princess Louise often features in the Top London Pubs lists for its stunning interior rather than the quality of its beer.

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For a list of London’s Top Ten Pubs visit  Visiting London Guide