(Visit London Blog, 24 Dec)
Roaring fires, steaming winter warmers, squashy sofas, board games… There’s nothing better than snuggling up in a cosy London pub or bar when it’s cold outside.
London is full of great wintertime pubs so it’s hard to pick just five, but here are a few to get you started. Add your own favourites to the mix in the comments section below.
Leather Bottle Pub
When it’s cold outside, the last place you want to go is a pub garden – unless it’s at the Leather Bottle. This historic West London pub has transformed its garden into a winter wonderland, complete with a mini ice rink and five ski chalets kitted out with heaters and blankets. Après-skate anyone?
Beat the winter boredom at The Dove on Broadway Market, where you can while away hours playing board games from the pub’s own selection and enjoying the excellent selection of British and Belgian beers and bites on offer. Ask behind the bar to borrow one of the board games, which range from chess to Monopoly – or join in one of the pub’s regular quiz nights (the next is on 8 January).
Tucked away within the Bunker Club in Deptford, Little Nan’s is a delightfully quirky bar decorated with chintzy furniture, teddy bears and cosy lamps. On the Christmas cocktail menu you’ll find special concoctions like Sexy Scottish Santa, Santa Baby and Sir Alan Titchmarsh (with British garden rhubarb, apple and ginger compote, rum and sugar) – all served in wacky mugs and teapots. There are also ‘nan snacks’ including cheese straws, Victoria sponge and shortbread.
The George Inn
London’s only remaining galleried coaching inn, The George Inn near London Bridge was once frequented by none other than Charles Dickens. More than 300 years after it opened, the inn is still drawing the punters in with its rustic beams, beautiful gallery and cosy interior. The courtyard garden area also has heaters and old-fashioned lamps to cater for the (inevitable) overspill.
Davy’s Wine Vaults
After an afternoon exploring Greenwich Market or a crisp winter’s walk around Greenwich Park, thaw out at Davy’s Wine Vaults. Established in 1870, this characterful overground/underground bar boasts more than 100 wines and is currently serving up hot mulled wine.
You can find more suggestions on our Traditional London Pubs page.