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Sir John Balcombe, Marylebone, NW1

21 Balcombe Street

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

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Graham Coombs left this review about The Sir John Balcombe

An old-looking pub frontage has been attached to this relatively new building but the inside has been heavily modernised and is a bit bland. The flooring has been sanded back and brickwork exposed behind the bar, with the ceiling removed to reveal steel girders. One end is a bit more old school, with some panelling and even a banquette along the side. The rest of the pub has the usual mix of high and low tables. A few tables are outside on the pavement and there is also a cellar bar, which I did not visit. Draught beers are Landlord and Doom Bar.

On 25th May 2019 - rating: 6
[User has posted 3290 recommendations about 3227 pubs]

Please Note: This review is over a year old.

Tris C left this review about The Sir John Balcombe

Another dull north Marylebone pub, but better than the Globe and Bell Inn due to the inclusion of real ale - just.
This is obviously a modern pub on the site of the Portman Arms, rebuilt, later renamed as a branch of Hobgoblin and now the Sir John Balcombe, presumably named after the former Lord Justice of Appeal who perhaps lived around here.
Plain inside, though opulent compared with the pubs mentioned above, with conventional furniture, grey walls and some exhibiting bare brick. Few people in midweek, despite or perhaps because of the football and mainly students.
Two pumps with one drawing Doom Bar with the clip reversed. Thereafter Sir John Balcombe Bitter, though in reality just rebadged Caledonian's Deuchars IPA which isn't my favourite tipple and this wasn't at its best. Still, at least it was served in a glass and at £2.10 a half, is cheap for this area. Rated 3.5.

On 21st June 2018 - rating: 4
[User has posted 1921 recommendations about 1888 pubs]

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Delboy 20 left this review about The Sir John Balcombe

Reasonable pub but only London Pride on and that was ruined for me by the curse of the plastic glass!

On 7th June 2018 - no rating submitted
[User has posted 1647 recommendations about 1551 pubs]

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Rex Rattus left this review about The Sir John Balcombe

They had London Pride, Doom Bar, Sambrook's Wandle, and Purity Mad Goose (£4.50(!) a pint) on. I saw a weekday (Mon - Wed, 12 - 5) lunch menu advertised, including things like club sandwich, sausage sandwich, and avocado/bacon/blue cheese salad for a fiver. On the main menu sandwiches are £6.95 or £7.95, burgers are £9.95 or £10.95 and the "pub classics" main meals range from £9.95 (ham/egg/chips, or sausage & mash) to £12.95 for the crab and chilli linguini.

The room itself is mainly painted light gastro grey, is bare-boarded, with a few uncomfortable looking tall tables with upholstered benches and hard wooden tall stools, some armchairs/sofas, and one or two normal tables and chairs. The obligatory large vase of lilies is on the bar counter, and of course the bar back displays some wine bottles. There are a few seats outside, and I saw a sign to a cellar bar bar inside.

This pub looks good from the outside, but inside it's typical of the breed. But these sort of places always seem popular, so I guess are what people want. The Mon - Wed meal deals seem a reasonable bet, but personally I was unimpressed with the beer prices.

On 1st August 2015 - rating: 4
[User has posted 2606 recommendations about 2520 pubs]

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

Formerly the Hobgoblin, and just as dark inside as previously (despite the strings on LED Christmas tree-type lights around the window frames). However, some space has been cleared and the furniture replaced when some very chunky tables and chairs. It also now has a reasonably-priced Thai food menu (so "The traditional pub with an Asian twist..." as they now style themselves). Still has three handpumps, with one retaining Hobgoblin and the other two offering Wherry and Wandle (£3.80). Very quiet, but worth considering if waiting for a train at nearby Marylebone station.

On 16th January 2012 - rating: 6
[User has posted 8007 recommendations about 8007 pubs]

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Steve of N21 left this review about The Hobgoblin

Pleasant enough corner pub situated just behind Dorset Square round the corner from Marylebone station. Bit too plain and dark inside for me and lacking a bit of character, but does have outside benches for when the weather is good enough.
Three hand pumps on the bar and the two Hobgoblin beers were supplemented by London Pride.
I’m not a great fan of Hobgoblin beers, but my pint was good enough and would probably visit again if I needed a bolt hole from the nearby Marylebone Road.

On 17th July 2010 - rating: 6
[User has posted 2094 recommendations about 1985 pubs]

Please Note: This review is over a year old.

Steve C left this review about The Hobgoblin

I like the way that this pub has embraced its name as there is a large goblin sitting at one end of the bar and there is also a creepy looking table in the corner of the dimly lit pub that I would choose to sit at if I were a goblin. Two out of the three ale choices were available and these were Pride and, yes you guessed it, Hobgoblin. There was also a standard draught selection from which a had a nice pint of Guinness.

There are a coupe of plasma screens that were both off whilst a football match was on so I guess that there is no Sky Sports. There was some music playing that I found a bit depressing, but I did visit on a quiet week night.

I found the barmaid to be pleasant enough and although I wouldn’t make this a destination pub I would pop in again if passing.

On 11th February 2010 - rating: 6
[User has posted 5142 recommendations about 5111 pubs]