5 Fantastic English Pubs
When visiting the United Kingdom, it is absolutely necessary to experience the local pubs. Unlike bars in the U.S., pubs offer small, intimate drinking environments where friends catch up after a long day or where families share a meal. These are not tourist destinations, and the food and drinks they offer are genuine to the area. Not only do these establishments offer great food and drink, but they are pieces of history, with some of them older than the U.S. and are known for catering to renowned thinkers and writers.
- Jerusalem Tavern, London
Voted Pub of the Year in 2009, the Jerusalem Tavern has been operating in several incarnations since the 14th century, though it has only been in its current location since the ‘90s. The pub is quite popular with the locals, and in its small space, seating is limited, but it’s not uncommon for tavern goers to linger out in the neighboring alleyway to chat. They offer a fantastic selection of beers and ales, all from St. Peter’s Brewery in Suffolk.
- The Eagle and Child, Oxford
A quaint pub on the side of St. Giles street in Oxford, the Eagle and Child is one of several pubs claiming to be the oldest in the U.K. They are also famed for offering a wonderful selection of Nicholson’s ales, as well as delicious traditional pub food. But fans of literature and film will be delighted to know, The Eagle and Child is most well known for playing host to The Inklings, Oxford’s famed group of writers including C.S. Lewis and J.R.R. Tolkien. Walk in the footsteps of literary giants, and perhaps find some inspiration of your own in this cozy English pub.
- The Raven, Bath
A family owned pub in the bustling city of Bath, The Raven is a free house, meaning that they are not tied to any one particular brewery. Beautiful like the rest of the city, the pub is made of two former Georgian townhouses. Aside from their wonderful selection of beers, ales, and ciders, The Raven has two specialties brewed for this pub alone. The Raven and Raven’s Gold. Try one with one of their famed traditional English meat pies, too.
- The Dirty Duck, Stratford-Upon-Avon
For those more interested in the theatre world, The Dirty Duck is a perfect evening retreat. Located near the Royal Shakespeare Theatre, it’s a wonderful spot for dinner before a show or drinking after. It’s also not uncommon to spot some of the actors frequenting the pub. Pop in for one of their ales or a glass of wine and a friendly discussion about the current Shakespearean production.
- The Baltic Fleet, Liverpool
The Baltic Fleet is perhaps best for those looking for a dash of local color to go with their evening drink. Open since the mid-1800s, the pub claims to be home to four distinct ghosts and two secret tunnels, one of which connects to the city’s old red light district. The cellar and tunnels are now used to brew the pub’s own unique beer.