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The Champion, W2

1 Wellington Terrace
W2 4LW

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Pub Type

Castle (Mitchells & Butlers)

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

Pub SignMan left this review about The Champion

This is a very nicely set out, open plan pub close to Kensington Palace. The single room layout has dark floorboards throughout, complimented by a smart patterned tile area around the servery. Leaded windows with stained green glass bands can be seen along two sides of the room, which has two small pillars in the centre and a fine decorative ceiling. Short banquette booths have been formed under the front windows, with long benches down the right-hand wall, standard tables and chairs through the centre and a row of high tables and stools directly opposite the bar. The servery runs down the left-hand wall and has a dark wood counter and bar back, although both have been painted in neutral colours in places, which sadly detracts from the overall look. The bar back has been adorned with all sorts of unrelated items, including old books, beer bottle displays, kitsch G&T signs and other bits and bobs, that help make it look a bit homely. There’s an impressive fireplace on the back wall, underneath a large blackboard that provided details on a Six Nations beer competition the pub had been hosting. An arch at the end of the bar leads through to a small rear space with room for a couple more tables and some horse themed pictures on the walls. Stairs lead down to a basement bar which has a limited amount of seating and its own servery, acting as a reasonable overspill area for peak times. From here, there is access to a garden which has a few picnic tables in a rather camped space.
There were four handpulls on the bar, dispensing Oakham Dragon in Bavaria, Turtle Pale Ale, Adnams Ghost Ship and By the Horns Jack the Lad IPA. These options were ably supported by a strong craft keg range which included beers from the likes of Thornbridge, Brewdog, Porterhouse and Tiny Rebel. My pint of the Dragon in Bavaria was £4.85 and in pretty good shape.
I liked the light, airy feel of this open-plan pub which mixed traditional features with contemporary styling to good effect, creating a pleasant space which seemed to have wide appeal judging by the customer base on this visit. The good cask and keg selection means this place is worthy of repeat visits and I’m sure I’ll be back here again before long.

On 9th September 2019 - rating: 7
[User has posted 2446 recommendations about 2446 pubs]

Danny O'Revey left this review about The Champion

Nice but busy pub, traditional London interior, a bit foody

On 1st July 2019 - rating: 7
[User has posted 1276 recommendations about 1253 pubs]

Please Note: This review is over a year old.

Tris C left this review about The Champion

Quite a traditional pub which is on the Notting Hill tourist route (the pub's website describes it as being in Notting Hill when in fact it's resolutely in Bayswater). There's plenty of leaded and stained glass windows which indicate that this was once a Charrington's pub - there's even a Charrington's 'winged tankard' motif in stained glass by one of the doors. Music in here is really a bit too loud and could have been turned down a notch or two and lighting's just a bit dim. This isn't a gastropub, as food tends to revolve around burgers, sausage, mash and fish and chips albeit at a price.
Ales on: Adnam's Broadside, Moorhouse's Black Cat Reserve, Windsor & Eton's Knight of the Garter, an unused pump and Celt Experience's Galaxy Equinox which was fine and £4.45 a pint which is steep, even for this area.
This is quite a good place for the area serving a decent choice of ales, at a price. I'd have given it a higher rating if the music hadn't been so loud, but otherwise I'd have no problem returning.

On 5th May 2016 - rating: 5
[User has posted 953 recommendations about 939 pubs]

Please Note: This review is over a year old.

Rex Rattus left this review about The Champion

This pub was better than I expected it to be. There were five handpumps on the bar, and all were gainfully employed dispensing Adnam’s Broadside, Windsor & Eton Knight of the Garter, Krystal Weiss wheat beer, Great Heck Brewery American Classic, and Liberation South Island Pale Ale (£2.10 a half). Being a gastropub food is available – main meals are generally in the £11 - £13 range, with a steak option at £17.50. There’s nothing much resembling pub grub.

This is an old, almost certainly Victorian, pub. It still retains its attractive orange banded latticed glazing in the windows, and the ornate fireplace with tiled surrounds at the back is another most attractive feature. There’s a wide tiled splash area surrounding the bar counter, and this tiling extends to become the flooring of a small-ish room at the back. The retention of these features certainly enhances the appearance of the pub.

But being a gastropub, the ceiling, pillars, bar counter and some of the walls have all been painted the very dark (almost black) charcoal colour that many of these sort of pubs seem to favour. It’s all very dark, but a splash of colour is provided by sprigs of flowers on all the tables. Furnishings are almost all good quality normal tables and chairs, but with a single butcher’s block tall table and tall stools next to a pillar. The stairs downstairs to the toilets also lead to some further seating, as well as to what is described as a “secret” garden. I suppose if any garden is entitled to be called a secret garden then this one is, as it is below street level and can’t be seen from the street.

The prices here seemed to be fairly steep even by London standards, but the ale selection is good, and the South London Pale Ale I had was on good form. It’s a comfortable enough pub; drinkers are welcome, and I reckon it’s worth dropping in for a swift one if you happen to be wandering down towards Bayswater Road.

On 21st November 2013 - rating: 7
[User has posted 2575 recommendations about 2493 pubs]

Please Note: This review is over a year old.

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

Whilst it certainly has gastro-pub elements, this square-ish bar is still quite traditional in many ways. Smaller seating area behind the bar (which which has old-fashioned tiling along the counter). Claims to have a 'secret garden' (not visited). Three of the five handpumps were working, with Broadside, Batemans Autumn Fall and Knights of the Garter from Windsor & Eton (£3.80) available. Overall, a bit better than I was expecting.

On 9th December 2012 - rating: 6
[User has posted 6000 recommendations about 6000 pubs]