Interesting review! I walked past here yesterday but didn’t go in, wish I had now.
Ye Olde Cheshire Cheese
145 Fleet Street, Holborn, London EC4A 2BU
- Blackfriars Station (0.3 km)
- Blackfriars Tube Station (0.4 km)
- City Thameslink Station (0.3 km)
- Contact us:
020 7353 6170
- Opening hours:
Closes 23h daily
2 Camden Walk, Camden Passage, London N1 8DY
berserkjohn7821: “was a brilliant pub and i was part of the owners family although it wasn't the best it made due sleeping on a inflatable sofa above every single one of you thank you for cherishing drinks in that pub while it lasted” more...
44 reviews of Ye Olde Cheshire Cheese in English
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I used to really like this pub with all its different sections and nooks. In fact, I still do like the place, but the novelty has worn off slightly. It is still a nice place to come and drink, especially in the winter when coming in from the cold streets somehow accentuates the warmth and cosiness of the venue.
I like the innovative solution they have found to serving food in a pub with so many hidey holes. They give you a beeper, so that you know when to come and pick up your meal. Of course everyone prefers their food brought to them, but that would be tricky here.
So for drinks there is the usual cheap Sam Smith’s selection, which I like as a change, but get a bit bored of if I visit their pubs too regularly. I don’t go that often recently anyway...especially since I learned what jerks they are - http://www.oldham-chronicle.co.uk/news-features/8/news-headlines/65093/pintsized-row-comes-to-a-head.
The vaulted cellars may date back to the 13th Century, the rest of the pub was rebuilt after the great fire of London reduced it to fondue. It also has its fair share of famous patrons if you care to look it up.
Comment 1 comment on this review
bexb-d, 8 June 2012:
Popped in here for lunch after a nearby meeting.
I had heard of it, as the oldest or one of the oldest pubs in London (perhaps even the UK) but since I no longer live in the UK and a decent pub is one thing I really miss, this looked like a great place to try out.
So the inside is dark and dingy, small rooms partitioned off, with steep creaky stairs leading to each floor.
We sat upstairs on a table and I had a MASSIVE steak and kidney pudding with a pint of Bitter (‘we only have the one, Sir’) It was lovely but I wasn’t hungry for two days afterwards!!
Service was OK – seemed like there wasn’t enough staff for the numbers of diners but not too bad.
if I had to sum up this place in one word it would be BRILLIANT
the number of nights I’ve spent in this pub drinking decent beers & wine with my mates!
atmosphere is great
staff are fantastic
they even do great food! (only gripe is that their kitchen closes a tad too early)
great location close enough for me to stagger home
warm and welcoming pub
I am really not fond of this pub – it’s dark and dingy with quite low ceilings and narrow corridors. I know it’s an old building, but for me I still feel it lacks character.
I’ve also always found it hard to find a place to sit. However I have only been with large groups and at night.
This is a Sam Smith’s pub so it’s very cheap, but then I don’t really like the taste of Sam Smith’s products.
Don’t get me wrong, I think if I wanted to get drunk for cheap this might be the place to go, or maybe in the day it is quieter, but for me whilst I usually really like pubs with history, this just feels a bit gimmicky.
I have not tried the food so cannot comment on this.
I love the Cheshire Cheese. It is always a place I take my dates. I was recommended it by someone who works nearby.
I don't drink as I don't want a beer gut but I only go there for the cosiness of the cellars, enjoy the history and to play a quiet game of cards.
It has a nice atmosphere although tourists are flocking to it now, and gets too crowded in other bars. I wish it wasn't on the tourist trail.
Great pub, a very traditional feel to it, but I can't help but feel a bit sad that it's a Sam Smiths. Nowt wrong with that, but if they served a series of guest ales and put a bit more effort into the food it'd be a 5-star job.
This is a lovely pub which I stumbled across with my girlfriend when we went on the London Film Locations Walk - a guided tour of the city's famous places seen on screen. Its so atmospheric in the pub, the beer is great and if you're new to London then Ye Olde Cheshire Cheese is a must do place to visit.
One of the oldest pubs in London is a quirky, nooky little Sam Smiths joint selling cheap but strong lager and other own brand treats.
More rooms than you can shake a stick at and as most of it is underground you're best off meeting friends in the usual spot, or outside the front door if you want to make sure you find them.
The food isn't up to much. Cheap and fried for the main. You're better off without it to be honest, there are plenty of places nearby to fill up on first.
A slice of Dickensian London, a few hundred yards from a number of Dickens' landmarks ( such as The Old Curiosity Shop). The atmosphere here is laid on with a trowel, with very dim lights and fires burning all year round. Also very cheap beer. Good place to bring visiting relatives from overseas or those easily overawed by "history", or to have a couple of quiet pints with chums; not the place for a raucous night out.
I have a love-hate relationship with the Cheese. Yes, it is nice and ye oldey-worldey, and yes the beer is nice and cheap, but something about it makes me consider it a definite back-up pub. It lacks a certain je ne c'est pas for me.
Out on a Saturday evening's pub-skylarking with a friend we found ourselves in Ye Olde Cheshire Cheese, and I have to say - I was very impressed!
Initially the heat from the fireplace seemed oppressive, but that was possibly in contrast from the frigid chill we'd come in from. As our eyes adjusted to the stygian darkness of the front bar we managed to find a couple of chairs and thought "Ah well, this is a tourist pub - we'll just grab one and then be on our way".
2 hours later we were still there, having shifted to pints of ale with port chasers & chatting to a few punters who'd rocked up - we met a couple of lawyers from Lancashire, and a couple of tourists who had romanced across 4 continents. Maybe it was the fact that the pub - erected in 1667 - claims to have played host to a couple of hundred years' worth of literati, such as Dickens, Twain, Voltaire, and Dr Johnson, and so visitors entered eager for it to present a memorable trip and experience, rather than just another nice old building to stand in, look at, and walk out of again.
As we sat, sipped & extemporised more than one new group of tourists ingressed - typically a shivering & slightly dejected looking gaggle led by an excited young man in front clutching a guidebook: and all of whom warmed up nicely, put away at least a swift half, before returning to the arctic Fleet-Streetian wastelands.
I can't comment on the quality of food, as we only supped of the hop & vine. The pristineness of the toilets was remarkable - we suspected a recent renovation, but in contrast to the ancient smoke-stained walls upstairs, the loos were almost hospital-like!
Having read other reviews here complaining about short pints & whatnot - the "standard" beers are dirt cheap (as Sam Smith's pubs always are), so getting 1/4 of an inch more head on your pint than you'd like isn't the end of the world... either let them know the tide's out, or quit whining.
Realistically, the joy in this pub's in sitting back soaking up the atmosphere & ambience and enjoying a snug fireside chat - so get to it! It's a treasure.
The only regret I've got is that the darkness in there was so impenetrable that I wasn't able to get a decent photo of the front room. And it had nothing to do with all the beer I'd drunk, honest.
This is a real quaint olde world style pub on fleet street. It was a damp saturday night in the heart of the city and it was still busy so its obviously quite a pull. The tourists ove it because its untouched and genuine.
Made up of lots of tiny crocked rooms over 4 or 5 floors its very cosy with warm roaring fires in a couple of the rooms.
the prices are very reasonable maybe the cheapest place to drik in central london. The low star rating is simply because the choice of drinks is so limited. However for a quirky visit its well worth it.
Great Sam Smiths pub. Not sure I'd want to be in there during peak times but it's a great old building and I found the beers cheap (Sam Smiths pubs stock all their own brand drinks and are usually cheaper than other pubs). The toilets are totally modern. Check out the writing in the old books on the way to the loos upstairs too. Can someone tell me what the double-decker tables are for? Empties? Candles? What?
Oh, we had nibbles in here. The mushroom soup was very warming on a snowy winter afternoon and the fried cheese tasty. Not sure about sit down meals here, we were only stopping in for a couple.
I really really want to give this place five stars. It’s a lovely pub while great little cubby holes and nooks and crannies (although does it have more nooks than it’s sister pub The Princess Louise? Probably not).
It’s a Sam Smiths pub so you’d expect the rounds to be cheap, right? Nope. Not if you order anything other than the draught beer. I was feeling hungover so ordered a cheery beer and a soda water. The bill was £5.10. EXCUSE ME? £5.10?! Apparently charging £1.20 for soda water is normal. Their tap water is free - so they’ve just charged me over a pound for bubbles. But they’d already poured it and I had to pay for it. Not impressed.
£4 for cherry beer means that it’s not a cheap drink - you only get a bottle. My cheap (hungover) night out was somewhat marred by this. But dammit the cherry beer is really yummy. But if you’re looking for a cheap night out, best stick to the draught beer. Had I done that, this place would have got five stars.
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