When Christian Darwood, 28, from Bounds Green exclaimed that one of his favourite things about London was that ‘it doesn’t matter where you are, there’ll always be a Samuel Smith’s pub within walking distance’, we knew we’d found a man with a passion. So we asked him to tell us exactly what’s so great about Sam Smith’s pubs and which ones are his favourites.
If you’ve ever had the pleasure of stumbling across a Samuel Smith’s pub you could be forgiven for thinking that you’ve travelled back through time to a bygone era – that’s all part of their appeal.
Established in 1758 in Tadcaster, Yorkshire, Samuel Smith’s now operate over 300 pubs in the UK with 35 of them in and around London. All of which remain independent to this day, upholding the traditions of the great British pub in an age of corporate chain takeovers.
Keeping with tradition, Samuel Smith’s only serve their own brand of expertly brewed ales, lagers, fruit beers and ciders. Each is unique to the brewery and I can personally testify that they are all delicious, and with prices averaging around £3 a pint, they’re also cheap.
If you’re looking for something new that feels a bit old, I strongly recommend you find a Samuel Smith’s pub. Here’s three of my favorites:
With two large floors and a bar on each, the Cock isn’t short on space. This doesn’t stop the Friday night crowd filling it up, however. If you’re in need of some peace and quiet, pop by on a Sunday afternoon you could just end up with the whole pub to yourself. 27 Great Portland Street, London, W1W 8QG
THE RED LION
Situated just off Carnaby Street, the Red Lion is lively and brimming with a fun atmosphere. No matter what the time of day, the staff are always warm and welcoming. If you’re feeling brave, the pub has its very own dart board. 14 Kingly Street, London, W1B 5PP
The John Snow is a pub of four sections. There’s the front bar, the back, upstairs and there’s outside. It’s always busy and from my experience, you’ll always manage to bump into someone you know there. 39 Broadwick Street, Soho, London, W1F 9QP