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Disappointment of the week with Bucking Fastard on the Pub Forum

Museum Tavern, Bloomsbury, WC1

49 Great Russell Street

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Pub Type

Taylor Walker (Spirit Pubs)
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Reviews (Current Rating Average: 7 of 10) Add Review see review guidelines

Please Note: This review is over a year old.

Graham Coombs left this review about Museum Tavern

A good traditional Bloomsbury pub with typical nice wood and glasswork. A fairly long thin bar, with leather banquettes along the side and a few tables outside on the pavement. Handy for the British Museum opposite. On handpumps were the usual Abbot and IPA, plus Theakston's Old Peculier, Sambrook's Junction and Wimbledon Copper Leaf, as well as a couple of ciders.

On 3rd December 2018 - rating: 7
[User has posted 3353 recommendations about 3290 pubs]

Please Note: This review is over a year old.

Steve C left this review about Museum Tavern

The Museum Tavern is a Traditional London boozer located over the road from the entrance of the British Museum. Hence it wasn’t surprising to find it full of diners during a recent lunchtime visit. My wife was working in this pub when we met circa 2000 so I have spent many an hour sat at the bar waiting for her to finish her shift. Unsurprisingly the décor is pretty much the same, but Greene King is now the landlord.
Along the left hand wall is the bar that faces seating down the windowed right hand side in this thin pub. At the rear is is some more seating and the some very smelly toilets are located downstairs. Available from the bar is a premium draught range and I counted seven hand pumps. These were drawing Redemption’s Hopspur, Theakston’s Old Peculiar, GK London Glory, GK IPA, Truman’s Swift and Old Rosie and Cheddar Valley ciders. Traditional pub grub is available all day and the popular fish and chips were priced at £13.
This is a decent enough pub that would be worthy of a revisit if in the area.

On 16th June 2017 - rating: 7
[User has posted 5303 recommendations about 5271 pubs]

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Just a quick pint, then I'm off left this review about Museum Tavern

Quite a narrow pub, now a Greene King house, with a long and interestingly-decorated bar taking up much of the back wall. Plenty of other historic features to look at if you manage to find a quiet time (not easy, as it is usually packed with people visiting the British Museum - directly opposite). Usually has a good selection from the seven handpumps, and on this visit I found IPA, London Glory, Redemption Fellowship porter (£4.95, but in great shape) and Theakston's Old Peculier plus a couple of ciders. Much better than you might expect from such an obvious tourist trap.

On 3rd June 2017 - rating: 7
[User has posted 8159 recommendations about 8159 pubs]

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Tris C left this review about Museum Tavern

We thought that this was going to be a tourist trap but were surprised just how un-touristy it was, though we did arrive at about 10.20 and at that time most drinkers seemed to be locals.

This pub has a fine interior - a CAMRA Heritage Pub - with a particularly ornate mirrored bar back and some peripheral stained glass panels. Furniture is conventional, the floor is part boarded and part carpeted, muted music played and I didn't spot a singe TV - result!

The landlord was friendly enough and went so far as to describe the ales on offer to a couple of tourists and even offer them tasters.

Ales on: Truman's Zephyr and 6 others which I couldn't see due to a couple of customers.

This is a surprisingly good pub indeed, despite its location. It has an 11.30 licence on weekdays, midnight on Saturdays but closes at 10.00 on Sundays. Well worth seeking out if in the area.

On 30th March 2016 - rating: 7
[User has posted 2009 recommendations about 1975 pubs]

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hondo . left this review about Museum Tavern

Taylor walker pub that lives up to its name being located across the road from the main entrance to the British museum. Interior as described below. 7 real ales and food served.

On 5th November 2014 - no rating submitted
[User has posted 2896 recommendations about 2833 pubs]

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Pub SignMan left this review about Museum Tavern

This is a fine little pub full of interesting Victorian features and named after the British Museum which is directly opposite. The most striking this about the pub is the number of entrances, with four differently labelled doors - 'Private Bar', 'Saloon', 'Public Bar' and 'Luncheon Buffet' each picked out in attractive etched glass - leading into what is now sadly one single room. The servery runs down the left hand side of the room and boasts a lovely, intricately worked bar back, lined with hops and displaying a number of old mirrors advertising beer and spirits from yesteryear. The room is partly carpeted, with a strip of bare boards running through the pub, past the servery. Seating comes by way of numerous padded benches arranged around the perimeter and supplemented by standard chairs. The rear wall has some nice tiling and a fireplace rather dwarfed by some enormous dark wood display cabinets and there is a nice stained glass panel above the door which leads to the toilets. Modern wallpaper has been applied either side of the bar, showing an image of bookshelves, which doesn't detract too much from the pub's traditional feel. The ceiling is also very striking, with beams criss-crossing over nicely patterned panels. There are quite a few picnic benches out on the pavement overlooking the museum, which would be a good spot to bag in brighter weather. Unsurprisingly the clientele is dominated by tourists seeking culture of a different kind after a day spent in the museum, and I had a very enjoyable time sat at the bar watching the staff trying to translate the incoming orders. Music played at a surprisingly loud level, but not too loud as to impede conversation.
The ale range seemed pretty good to me, with Brains Rev James, Cottage National Treasure, Fullers London Pride, Hogsback TEA, Hook Norton Lion and Westerham 1730 available alongside Thatcher's Heritage Cider. My pint of 1730 cost £4.20, which is crazy but doesn't seem to deter the tourist masses. The bar staff ran the whole gamut of personality ranging from super friendly to totally disinterested.
This is one of those London pubs that's well worth a look for the excellent interior but pretty useless for an extended session. I enjoyed loitering at the bar during this stay and would happily return, but the high prices and transient customer base make it difficult to really love.

On 8th June 2014 - rating: 7
[User has posted 3126 recommendations about 3126 pubs]

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john gray left this review about Museum Tavern

Empty pub on a rainy Monday night so no atmosphere. 8 beers on handpump but a pretty dull selection of beers you can find all over central London. I will leave it for the tourists.

On 21st December 2013 - rating: 6
[User has posted 1023 recommendations about 1009 pubs]

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Danny O'Revey left this review about Museum Tavern

Fine old pub opposite the British Museum. Lots of dark wood, on the bar, ceiling and fittings, has a lovely London boozer feel. Shame its where it is as its very busy and a bit pricey at £4 a pint, but the beer is good and atmosphere is better.

Proudly advises its a sports free zone.

On 26th September 2012 - rating: 8
[User has posted 1456 recommendations about 1434 pubs]

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Roger Button left this review about Museum Tavern

The Museum Tavern started in the early 18th Century as the Dog & Duck, changing its name when the British Museum opposite was built in the 1760’s. Much of the current pub dates from the 1850’s when the original pub was expanded.

The interior comprises of a single medium sized room with a central open bar. There are several features that are worth closer inspection; some of the original etched glass remains with the saloon, luncheon and buffet bars all depicted. Some of the old tiling can also still be seen and the heritage mirrors behind the bar add to the charm.

The pub has always had a good reputation but I was a bit taken back to discover that it has now become part of the ubiquitous Taylor Walker brand. The pub does have a slightly more expanded and interesting ale range than the average Taylor Walker pub although the choices did seem quite mainstream for a place that has thrived over the years on a good reputation for its beer. 5 of the 7 pumps were in use on my latest visit, the avaiable beers being Tribute, London Gold, Old Golden Hen, Adnams Broadside and Wooodforde Wherry with Theakstons Old Peculiar and Harveys both off. At £3.65 for the Wherry, I think they are looking to maximize from the tourists who call in after a lengthy slog around the museum. The food is what you would expect from any chain with main courses around £8-£15.

Whilst the Museum remains one of the better pubs in the area, I can’t help feel that it doesn’t have that special something that could make it one of the finest in London and whilst in Punch’s custodianship, I can’t think that will change much.

On 10th November 2011 - rating: 7
[User has posted 1239 recommendations about 1233 pubs]

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Real Ale Ray left this review about Museum Tavern

This pub was always a bit of a lager trap for me and didn't really bother with it. I see a lot of them are going over the road now. Yeah this pub is doing some good beers and has a lot better choice than it ever did. Always worth a look in when not too mobbed.

On 21st March 2011 - rating: 8
[User has posted 3388 recommendations about 3387 pubs]

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