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The Glassblower, Soho, W1

40-42 Glasshouse Street

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Pub Type

Taylor Walker (Spirit Pubs)

Reviews (Current Rating Average: 5 of 10) Add Review see review guidelines

Tris C left this review about The Glassblower

Dating from 1868 as the Bodega and now yet another Greene King outlet. Sigh.
Probably original, there are very large, distressed industrial wooden members in here, where it’s all a bit dark, with a black match boarded ceiling. The floor is modern boarded, with Minton-style tiled entrance and bar apron. Furniture is tall, mismatched and industrial. Lighting comes from bulkhead caged lamps and music is quite loud.
Ales: two ciders, GK IPA, Landlord (off), so I opted for a Neck Oil at a painful £3.30 a half.
This is a bit of a pest of a pub; perhaps GK are trying to provide something that’s actually different from all their other identikit outlets in this area and indeed London, but I don’t like industrial interiors so would definitely opt for GK’s Leicester Arms over the road.

On 19th October 2021 - rating: 3
[User has posted 1515 recommendations about 1495 pubs]

Please Note: This review is over a year old.

Real Ale Ray left this review about The Glassblower

A fine looking pub tucked away down a side street. But nothing really special about the interior, especially the downstairs lounge and bar. All the woodwork on our visit had been stripped back, maybe that was the intention or they were about to repaint it all. The pub was busy on our Tuesday eve visit, so standing was the only option. There was a choice of four ales on handpump, Portobello Star, Sambrooks Wandle, GK IPA and London Glory. The pub had more of a wine bar feel to it and some fusion jazz music was being played.

On 17th November 2019 - rating: 4
[User has posted 3092 recommendations about 3092 pubs]

Please Note: This review is over a year old.

Moby Duck left this review about Glassblower

An architectually interesting looking pub as described by ETA below, thats where the interest stops for me, inside its a typically touristy Taylor Walker pub thats rife in this area.Beers were T&W 1730,Sambrooks Battersea Rye, Something called Dompah ? And W&E Canberra which was average in everything except the price, £2.50 a half, ouch. Wont be back.

On 25th October 2016 - rating: 3
[User has posted 1559 recommendations about 1540 pubs]

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E TA left this review about Glassblower

A triangular corner pub with a single triangular public bar on the ground floor and a similar bar upstairs which was closed for a private function. The building was originally a workhouse, and glass was made here in Victorian times, hence the name. The bare floor and gaming machines make it feel Spartan. It’s currently run by Taylor Walker, and it certainly isn’t their best effort. The staff were young, inexperienced and amateurish. Four handpumps on the bar – one advertised Windsor Knot, but that ran dry while we were being served. As an alternative I had Sambrook’s Lavender Hill, which tasted much too much like a megakeg lager to be enjoyable. Other beers on were 1730 and Doombar, but we weren’t tempted. Food was the usual over-reheated slop served in chipped enamel pans, not at all enjoyable. I really wasn’t terribly impressed, but given its location it does OK.

On 18th October 2016 - rating: 5
[User has posted 2868 recommendations about 2835 pubs]

Please Note: This review is over a year old.

Rex Rattus left this review about Glassblower

My first visit to this pub for many years left me seriously underwhelmed. Being a Taylor Walker pub I expected something a bit interesting in the way of ales, if only their own Westerham Brewery 1730. The four handpumps had a couple drawing cider (Wilce's Dry, and Millwhite's Apples & Pears - perry/cider mix perhaps?), plus GK IPA and GK London Glory. Very disappointing. With my CAMRA discount, my pint of London Glory was £4.05 - that makes it £4.50 without the discount. It was produced woefully short as well, but the lady who I took to be the bar supervisor came over and gave me a top up. I suppose one should expect top of the range prices in a bar a stone's throw from Piccadilly Circus. The usual Taylor Walker pub grub menu is available, also at top of the range prices for pubco pub grub.

Two one-armed bandits greet on the right as you enter; the room is furnished entirely with tall tables/tall stools; and the black-painted false beams seem a futile attempt to imbue it with an "olde worlde" feel. A previous poster mentions two levels, but I only visited the street level room. I didn't find anything to recommend this pub - other than it's still there. But maybe I was just unlucky with the ale choice.

On 10th August 2015 - rating: 4
[User has posted 2599 recommendations about 2513 pubs]

Please Note: This review is over a year old.

john gray left this review about Glassblower

Another very busy pub on 2 levels.4 cask beers on inc Otter -bitter and Trooper.Touristy.

On 7th March 2015 - rating: 6
[User has posted 965 recommendations about 951 pubs]

Please Note: This review is over a year old.

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

Modernised triangular pub, now branded as a Taylor Walker house. Not retaining a great deal of character, but the quieter upstairs bar and dining area is housed in a slightly more characterful room. Pride, Landlord, 6X (£4.20) and Rosie's Pig cider available from four handpumps (plus a duplicate at first-floor level) on my latest visit. There are better pubs nearby, but also many worse.

On 24th July 2014 - rating: 6
[User has posted 7001 recommendations about 7001 pubs]

Please Note: This review is over a year old.

Roger Button left this review about Glassblower

Situated just off the northern end of Piccadilly Circus, this triangular wedge shaped pub is ideally located to catch the best (or worst) of tourist London. Now labeled under the Taylor Walker banner, it bears most of the hallmarks of the averageness associated with the brand.

The single room interior is quite basic and much smaller than it looks from the outside. Furnishings are predominantly space saving high tables but bagging one is a rarirty. A large pentagonal lantern hangs in the centre of the building but for the most part it is a barren place as far as décor is concerned. There is an upstairs bar / dining room but the “section closed” sign seems to be a permanent fixture on the stairs leading to it whenever I am there. I spotted no TV’s or any signs of the comedy nights that certainly used to be held here so it’s just some bland piped music on the entertainment front.

There are 4 ales generally available, most recently Doom Bar, Youngs London Gold, Black Sheep Ale (as opposed to the more regular Best so a bit of a bonus there) and Spitfire (albeit with a “coming soon” clip). The quality is generally quite good and service has on occasions been surprisingly proficient and on one occasion I even had a full pint replaced because of some sediment in the bottom even though I had drunk about three quarters of it. Food is by way of the standard Taylor Walker pub grub menu although you will be hard pushed to find anywhere to sit and eat.

There are now so many Talylor Walker branded pubs in the area that they all become much of a muchness and the Glassblower doesn’t really stick out much from the rest. It does a decent enough job if passing by but there’s not enough to go out of the way for.

On 23rd November 2011 - rating: 6
[User has posted 1239 recommendations about 1233 pubs]

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Danny O'Revey left this review about Glassblower

Excellent triangular shaped bar, its darkish in side, with high tables and stools. Very plesant place to come for a drink, there is a choice of real ale that is well kept

On 15th June 2010 - rating: 8
[User has posted 1347 recommendations about 1324 pubs]

Please Note: This review is over a year old.

Steve C left this review about Glassblower

This place feels more like a drinking den than a pub. The barmaid was friendly enough and the choice was fairly good (usual lagers, Bombardier, Landlord, Butcombe, Robins Ransom, Leffe, Hoegarden and Staropramen).

The bogs downstairs chucked up a bit of a whiff and there is no outside seating, although there were plenty of people standing outside. It got a little loud with people chatting and the sound of their voices echoing around the room.

Not the greatest pub, but OK for a quick pint.

On 2nd September 2008 - rating: 6
[User has posted 3932 recommendations about 3908 pubs]