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If you’re wondering what the Thames docks might have felt like before their Disneyfication into Docklands, these narrow, ivy-covered and etched-glass premises aren’t a bad place to start.

The downstairs room of this riverside pub, which dates from 1720, is all wood panels and nautical jetsam (and is mercifully devoid of mobile ringtones and music); a tight stairway leads up to a more plain restaurant room that accommodates the Sunday roast overspill.

The ales (Landlord, Broadside and the like) are good, but a half-dozen wines of each colour (by glass and bottle), plus jugs of kir royale in summer and glasses of port in winter, also please the cheerful clientele of well-heeled locals and grown-up heritage junkies.

Watch out for your shoes if you step out of the main bar room on to the tiny deck at high tide.

In September 2011 the Grapes was bought by actor Sir Ian McKellen (best known to the under-25s as 'Gandalf'), so no doubt it will be Mor-dor to get a pint at the bar now.

Venue name: Grapes
Address: 76 Narrow Street
E14 8BP
Opening hours: Open noon-3pm, 5.30-11pm Mon-Wed; noon-11pm Thur-Sat; noon-10.30pm Sun. Food served noon-2.30pm, 7-9.30pm Mon-Sat; noon-3.30pm Sun
Transport: Tube: Westferry DLR
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I have drank in this pub when visiting London for many years and often meet friends there. But we wont be going back after the insulting behaviour from the bar staff on our visit last weekend. A group of six of us had met in the back room and had spent over £100 on 5 rounds of drinks when one of our company accidentally knocked a glass of red wine over across our table. The drink did not hit anyone else and the glass did not break but we were then told that we would not be served. The bar staff refused to give a reason why we would no longer be served so we left. It certainly seems as if they dont want visitors business anymore.......