The best pubs in Hammersmith
In a villagey spot (known locally as Brackenbury) you’ll find Victorian pub The Andover Arms. What’s great is that it feels like a proper boozer: there’s a wood-panelled bar that looks like it’s been around since the pub’s early days, creaky chairs, faded carpets and a roaring fire. Cheery staff only add to the snug, friendly vibe. This isn’t the place for craft lager or adventurous drinking but for the comfort factor, you can’t go wrong.
This pub is part of the Hippo Inns family, but there's a fair bit of history to the riverside blue beauty, which was first licensed back in 1772. Given its location it’s a popular Boat Race boozer, but the Blue Anchor has a few facets to keep punters keen year-round, from a first-floor balcony to bottomless brunch on Sundays.
Venue says Witness the action of the Rugby World Cup early doors for all Home Nation Fixtures and hook into the ultimate game side breakfast.
Its large front facing Brook Green, a peaceful rectangle of tennis courts and relaxation tucked behind the chaos that is Hammersmith, this rather grand, high-ceilinged Young’s pub is a comforting spot – especially if you can bag a spot by picture window from which to peer across the green. The beer line-up is pretty standard, with Young’s own beers well represented.
An independent pub along Black Lion Lane, the Carpenter’s Arms has long been known as a go-to gastropub. It champions seasonal dishes with more than a bit of influence from Italy. And while real ale is championed at the bar, modern flourishes include negronis served as aperitivi – great for drinking in a gorgeously kept walled garden.
Down towards Putney bridge, this vast Victorian venue is within shouting distance of Craven Cottage. But it’s often a rugby-loving crowd that’s drawn to the riverside setting for match day vibes. Live music and comedy fill this tall-ceilinged pub quite nicely, or come in the summer for a barbecue on the orchard terrace.
There are a few pubs on the Upper Mall embankment west of Hammersmith Bridge; but this one is a duck-your-head heritage pub experience (and a prime spot from which to watch the Boat Race). The Dove makes much of its history, but it’s too cosy and genuine to leave to the tourists. As Mr Fuller was one of the gentlemen involved in a 1796 takeover of the enterprise, it’s no surprise to find the full range of Fuller’s ales at the bar.
Just off Hammersmith Broadway, this branch of the craft beer pub chain has three outdoor spaces and plenty of inside seating and bar space to bend an elbow. Beyond that, expect the usual stellar line-up of beers way beyond Stella, plus pub grub that tends to lean on the meaty side of life.
The Duchess of Cambridge opened as the result of a swell of national pride following on from the royal wedding of Wills and Kate. But prices here aren’t geared towards the nobility. Get royally pissed on Fizz Fridays, where bottles of prosecco cost 15 quid, or work your way through affordable and really well kept real ales – the owners of the pub used to own the Bree Louise in Euston (RIP) and so know a thing or two about the brown stuff.
A light-filled pub near Ravenscourt Park, The Hampshire Hog is run by the team who put the Engineer gastropub in Primrose Hill on the map. As such, expect a restauranty menu – dishes the likes of chicken ballotine and baked mackerel – and a cocktail happy hour that is bringing the French Martini to King Street. A ‘pantry’ maintains the upmarket vibe, an area hosting tastings and classes and selling crockery and cookbooks.
A blue tile-fronted Brook Green spot with a focus on good grub, but not to the detriment of boozing. Food is crowd-pleasing stuff with a slightly poshed-up edge – think beef shortrib and pan fried hake. Beers are pretty classic, too, Sharp’s Doom Bar and Sambrook’s Wandle often spied on the bar. Seating outside lends itself to summer evenings, although there’s little to look at but other houses.
It’s a long walk from Hammersmith Bridge along a lazy bend in the Thames to get to the Old Ship, but it’s well worth the trek. Less of the old, though, the place has an airy boathouse feel and a modern, colourful look in keeping with the Young’s pub portfolio. There’s a choice of outdoor seating upstairs or down, or a spot in the classy main bar/restaurant. Beer and food is solid, if a little generic.
Another Fuller’s pub (there are quite a few down in this neck of the woods, given the proximity to the brewery’s home in Chiswick), the Stonemason’s sits on the corner where Cambridge Grove meets Glenthorne Road. The food is hearty – from burgers and pies to fancier fare; the drinks include real ales on tap and craft beers in the fridge. The layout is smart and suits the Sunday lunch crowd.
For that countryside pub feeling without leaving London, head to The Queen’s Head. The Brook Green pub has a cosy, low-ceilinged interior, but it’s actually the beer garden that makes it worth seeking out, a large space with smart wicker chairs and covered areas. Inside, the line-up at the bar is the solid kind you’d expect from any Fuller’s pub, London Pride and all.
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