A charming pub with a lovely atmosphere, but in many ways, it’s coasting. The set-up is appealing, the two small cream-painted rooms hung with interesting pictures and maps (notably Stephen Walter’s depiction of London as an island), and packed with wooden tables, chairs and benches.
The blackboard menu is tempting (cider-baked pork chop, fish pie, apple crumble and cream) and nicely priced (£4.50-£12), but on recent visits we’ve found the execution lacking: pork rillettes with toast and cornichons had liquefied; apple, beetroot and goat’s cheese salad was missing the beetroot; and ratatouille on bruschetta with mozzarella and salad would be deemed average in a student caff.
There’s an attractive range of drinks (real ales, Breton cider, a decent wine list), but ours were served in an amateur fashion, the most serious offence being a half of Dark Star’s Hophead poured straight into a boiling hot glass. In short, all so different from the professionalism on show at nearby sister bar 69 Colebrooke Row. Pity, as the Charles Lamb has been a real favourite in the past.