Tag Archives: Pubs

Pub Spotlight No. 4

New Cross House

316 NEW CROSS ROAD, NEW CROSS,

LONDON, SE14 6AF

The New Cross House is just very nice to sit and have a drink in. It is expensive, but the drink range is excellent and so is the quality of the food. I was sceptical when the old Goldsmiths Tavern was taken over and renovated, fearing the grim, prim spectre of gentrification; and whilst it’s right for the community-minded to be wary, I’m a fair sort, and this pub does have many good qualities, whilst being largely free from pram-wielding horrors. The people behind the New Cross House have turned it into a something really … nice. I’m going to be using the word ‘nice’ a lot in this review, much like the jazz club bloke from The Fast Show. It’s just the word that springs to mind most readily as I write about this place.

Since the take-over, the most obvious change is in décor, with dank cavern replaced by bright surroundings that make excellent use of the large space available, with the pub split between long rows of booths, and a more traditional dining area. The big windows at the front make the place especially bright during the daytime. Combined with the colourful mock-tiling and other ornate trappings, the place looks like the conservatory from some Edwardian Hotel-set crime drama. A place where Poirot has gathered all the suspects at the end in order to reveal the culprit; but, you know, crossed with a pub. The beer garden is also nice; it’s like someone’s big patio, but with a ping-pong table, and an ersatz rustic barn attached at the back.

In the evening the place gets a lot busier, with lots of people coming for dinner, especially for the pizzas, which you can see being cooked in a proper big pizza oven. They come in a variety of imaginative toppings and are available by the slice or whole. There is also a menu’s worth of very good pub grub.

The drinks are where the New Cross House really excels, though; they have arguably the best selection of quality booze in the immediate area- it’s probably a toss-up with the Albert and the Dog & Bell. The choices on tap include Erdinger and Vedett; along with some of the craft beers from Greenwich’s Meantime Brewery: the London Lager, and the fucking gorgeous London Pale Ale, keep it local, and drink it. Bottled beers include Sierra Nevada, Brooklyn Lager, Duvel and Modelo; there is also an excellent selection of wine, and a particularly good choice of whiskies.

Despite being quite pricey, you do get what you pay for. The New Cross House really does have excellent food and drink, and the atmosphere is lively in the evening all week. Considering pubs of this ilk, the place manages to avoid the very worst trappings, whilst offering greater choice to the punter. It’s done-up more than the other pubs in the area, it’s more expensive; it isn’t a terrible departure from the norm, but I would start to worry if more pubs like this popped-up. It would be churlish to say the New Cross House doesn’t offer something very enjoyable, though. It’s all just very nice.

Advertisements

2 Comments

Filed under Places, Reviews

Pub Spotlight No. 3:

New Cross Inn

323 New Cross Road, London, SE14 6AS

020 8355 4976

Open: Mon – Sat: Noon – 2am
Sun: Noon – 12:30AM.

20% off drinks Noon – 8PM.

In ever-changing publand, the New Cross Inn consistently puts on great live acts for your enjoyment. The venue hosts an eclectic range of events, from comedy open mics to punk nights to bass. There are a huge variety of different bands and performers on at the Inn, and the pub will always support local acts. They also put on some big names every now and then. Bad Manners brought the fucking house down when they performed here a couple of years ago; and Howard Marks did a great show a while back. The compact space makes for a brilliant atmosphere when a band really gets going. The Guardian even voted the pub in its Top 10 London Music Venues.

The compact interior was made less sardine-tinny last year when the place was refurbished; shifting the bar from invasive horseshoe to ‘bit in the corner’. The old bar took up around half the floor space in an already small venue, and extended out to within about two foot of the stage, splitting the pub in the half. The only way to move from one part to the other was to squeeze through this narrow passage, always chock-full of the fattest, sweatiest, most lecherous oafs in the building. Now, thankfully, with the more space-efficient layout, you no longer need to be a feline contortionist to avoid brushing up against icky jowls and waistline overspill. Hurray!

Drink prices are etched in chalk high-up on the wall by the bar: something I wish more places would do. They have a good selection of lagers and spirits, and also some nice ales and ciders on the pumps, including Weston’s Old Rosie: a drink with the power to end worlds. It’s moreish, lethal loveliness in a glass.

As I said at the start, the New Cross Inn will always provide good bands and good nights, so go and enjoy.

Leave a comment

Filed under Places

Londonist’s 10 Best Pubs in Greenwich

Afternoon,

Londonist.com has published their Top Ten Best Pubs in Greenwich, as voted for by their readers, which you can read here: http://londonist.com/2012/09/where-are-the-best-pubs-in-greenwich.php. They’re following this poll through with a serious scientific field study in the form of a pub crawl. It’s on Monday 24th September at 6.30, starting at The Greenwich Union. You do need to e-mail matt@londonist.com in order to attend.

If you’re a visitor, or new to the area, the list gives a good idea of where and where not to drink. On the whole, I agree with their top five, The Greenwich Union is certainly the best, though expensive; and the last few times I went in The Gypsy Moth it smelt badly of sick. We’ll be doing our own reviews of some of Greenwich’s finest boozeholes in the coming weeks. It’s just up the road, after all.

Leave a comment

Filed under News

Pub Spotlight No. 2:

The Hobgoblin

272 New Cross Road, New Cross, London SE14 6AA

08713 322264

Mon-Sat: 11am-11pm
Sun: 12noon-10.30pm

The Hobgoblin is just kind of there. It’s not great, but you end up going there a lot. Inside, it’s like the hull of a miserable ship; one that smells of stale beer, and has sofas, and really uncomfortable wooden church pews instead of hammocks. There’s a lot of wood panelling, and with the bright lights the whole place is bathed in an oppressive amber hue.

Aside from the decor, my main problem with The Hobgoblin is that the staff tend to be quite rude. All the time. They must be indoctrinated in it by the main men: three rugger buggers who appear to run the place. I don’t know if they’re related, but they all look vaguely similar; they’re like cauliflowered trolls, with beer bellies flopping out of British Lions rugby jerseys. Their heads are distended and warped into the shapes of various root vegetables, and they all have a rather blunt and passive-aggressive demeanour. And they love rugby, which is enough to turn you off anyone.

Though eggchasing is the primary pastime (they really love it, far too much), the place is pretty good for watching football. You usually get a decent-sized crowd watching games and there is a big screen in the conservatory.

The place gets extremely busy on Wednesday nights during term time, for Ladies Night, when said gender is entitled to various drink offers. There are lots of cheap spirits flung back, as the place acts as departure lounge for the Flight into Hell that is Club Sandwich at Goldsmiths Student Union. If you do plan on going Sandwich, it’s definitely worth flinging as many down your neck as you can, and if you’re not, well, the pub is nice and lively until closing every Wednesday anyway. So enjoy.

There’s a middling selection of draught beers, the usual lagers plus Heineken; and Doom Bar, London Pride, and, um, Hobgoblin. A pint of Guinness is £3.70 and normally pretty good. And they often have bottles of Green Goblin cider, which is fucking great. The Thai food is also excellent and reasonably priced.

To be honest, if you’re from somewhere horrible like Stoke or Hull, you’ll probably love this place. If not, well, it’s kinda just OK. It’s convenient; and a good atmosphere can build when it gets busy, particularly the beer garden in the summer, or on a Wednesday night. When it is packed out, you can ignore the rude staff and shit interior, but otherwise they bring it down if you’re just after a quiet pint.

Leave a comment

Filed under Places

Nice pub map of New Cross

I found this nice little ‘pub map’ while interwebz surfing this morning. Created by the very talented Mike Hall, it shows the locations of all pubs in the New Cross area, he also gives a mini review for each. You could always print it out to use as a guide the next time you fancy taking on the coma inducing A2 pub crawl.

Check out more of Mike’s stuff here

Leave a comment

Filed under Stuff

Pub Spotlight No. 1:

Marquis of Granby

322 New Cross Road, London, SE14 6AG

020 8692 3140

Located slap-bang in the centre of New Cross, the Marquis is a long established local that attracts a broad spectrum of drinkers, and offers something to a lot of people. At first glance, it’s an unremarkable and slightly dingy Irish boozer. During the daytime the place is empty, bar a few hunched, grey figures scouring the Racing Post. But of an evening, this is a lively, atmospheric and welcoming pub, with a fantastic mix of students and locals all having a drink together.

The décor is very much what you’d expect from a local of this ilk: Black painted walls, red upholstered snugs and banquettes. There are various Irish-themed scenes decorating the walls, but it doesn’t descend into ‘diddly-dee’ vapidity, and adds to the warm character come night time.

The assortment of punters creates a comfortable environment, and is best on weekday evenings, when you’ll get lots of large groups drinking together. On Friday and Saturday nights the pub also hosts tangoed types up from Bexley and Dartford, knocking back shots before heading into The Venue (Don’t). The place gets animated, and is a good spot to meet people before heading elsewhere (Not The Venue). It’s definitely worth knowing, however, that when Millwall are playing at home, the place gets absolutely rammed after the final whistle. You won’t able to move, and will be subjected to dodgy ska versions of Millwall songs, played on a hellish loop on the jukebox. Even when there’s no football on, I have seen some of the more weather-beaten characters get lecherous on a Saturday night. One fella, in particular, will, every Saturday, put Rihanna on the always-too-loud jukebox, and gyrate his emaciated carcass about the place, beckoning people to come join him. It really is enough to put you off your crisps. So be warned, Saturdays in here aren’t for everyone.

On tap, you’ll find all the usual suspects, along with Addlestone’s Cider, which a lot of people seem to like, but I think tastes strangely of ham. With regard to ales, there’s only London Pride and Doom Bar on the pumps; meanwhile, there’s the standard selection of spirits and bottled drinks you’d expect to find in any decent pub. A pint of Guinness costs £3.40, and is always of a good standard. Most of the other draught choices range from between £3.10-£3.80. There are three well-placed screens for sport, as well as a bigger pull-down screen, and is an excellent place to watch football and boxing in particular.

The Marquis isn’t perfect, but it’s a solid and unpretentious pub; it’s a broad church, catering to the people of this parish. Places like the New Cross House may have nice food and craft beers on tap, but pubs like the Marquis give a neighbourhood its soul. The fact that on a weekday evening, you’ll find art students, lecturers, football fans and old Irish locals drinking side-by-side shows its appeal. It just does the job of serving alcohol to people really well.

Leave a comment

Filed under Places