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Pub Of The Month - November 2021 with rpadam on the Pub Forum

The Three Kings, Clerkenwell, EC1

7 Clerkenwell Close
Phone: 02072530483

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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.

Tris C left this review about The Three Kings

No need to reference Elvis, Henry VIII or King Kong here, as The Three Kings is the original name though the sign for the former has recently been removed.
Externally the pub still displays its Watney, Combe, Reid roundel as well as some green and gold Mann Crossman & Paulin livery. Inside, the pub features eclectic furniture with a black lacquered floor and knick-knacks; parts of the walls are bare brick, the remainder plastered with pages from vintage music magazines and there's a welcome coal fire. The overall effect is quite dark but cosy and cossetting, especially the sitting room area upstairs which seems to escape the attention of most drinkers. Overall, a CAMRA Interior of Regional Importance. The overall effect here is one of a dive bar which can get very busy by mid-week.
The staff are typically fine and friendly - the landlord has been here an age. Ales: Timothy Taylor's Landlord and Harvey's Sussex Best as staples at not much shy of £5.00 a pint which is what you expect in this very fashionable and attractive part of the world. Typically a third guest ale is on and the quality is consistently good - I've never had a bad pint in here.
This place is well worth a visit if passing or on a crawl, making for a great double with the Crown on the other side of the road, though I'd be happy to spend an evening in here.

Closed on Sundays.

On 8th August 2019 - rating: 8
[User has posted 1316 recommendations about 1295 pubs]

Please Note: This review is over a year old.

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

Plain-looking side-street pub, located just off Clerkenwell Green, with a curving frontage and bar. However, it is full of pleasantly traditional furniture and decor inside, with all kinds of pictures, posters and newspaper extracts on the walls. Just before Christmas, it was no surprise to find just two of the four handpumps in use, dispensing the regular Landlord and Harvey's (£4.50).

On 29th December 2017 - rating: 7
[User has posted 6620 recommendations about 6620 pubs]

Please Note: This review is over a year old.

Malden man left this review about Three Kings

Situated on a bend in the road, this is an attractive half tiled pub sporting an old Watney Coombe Reid sign, leaded windows, floral displays over the roof where the first floor is set back. An unusual shape resulting in a small squint ended room with a black lacquered floor, a red ceiling with beams wrapped in newspaper and seating at benches, regular chairs and banquettes. The bar is on the back wall, ales offered were Landlord, Harvey's Sussex Best (£4.45), Purity Gold with one unclipped. Food served and looked surprisingly good value for the area but I cannot vouch for it. A montage of photos of actors and musicians, a huge Chet Baker poster, modern art above the bar gantry and a nice framed map make up a substantial part of the decor. Additionally a glass case of old toys, from the 50s, 60s and so on were a fascinating glimpse back to the past and my own childhood.
I found this to be a lovely and rather quirky pub, unusual for Central London, you have to accept these beer prices in certain parts unfortunately and I would drop by again, if not for a wallet busting session.

On 14th July 2016 - rating: 7
[User has posted 1690 recommendations about 1664 pubs]

Please Note: This review is over a year old.

Quinno _ left this review about The Three Kings

A revisit found three ales – TT Landlord, Hop Back Summer Lightening and Woodfordes Wherry, along with a welcome sighting of Black Rat cider. My Wherry wasn’t up to much though. The exterior has had a makeover is less mad than previous; there also seemed to be less tat inside than I remembered from four years back. Wall-to-wall pics of various celebrities (some more so than others), along with an old hi-fi cupboard housing post-war toys, die-casts and some assorted bobbins. Lots cards of kings dotted around. Maybe I ‘got’ it a little more this time than last, but I still wouldn’t care to prioritise it over a number of other pubs in the nearby vicinity.

February 2007
Not sure this place justifies the hype it receives in certain quarters. Three mainstream beers on the go (my Pride was fine) served by a bloke who was in Holby City for a bit. The pub interior is trying too hard to be “quirky” – stuffed full of tat that even the local Oxfam wouldn’t take. The tat and random posters reminded me more of a student union bar circa 1994. In fact, a lot of the people in there seemed quite studenty. I guess some will love it but it got on this reviewers nerves somewhat – perhaps I was having a Victor Meldrew day.

I might pop back on a summers day to sample the al fresco element (apparently you can drink in the church garden), but I wouldn’t go out of the way to reappear. Scored - 6.

On 8th August 2011 - rating: 6
[User has posted 4200 recommendations about 4187 pubs]

Please Note: This review is over a year old.

Steve of N21 left this review about The Three Kings

Normally I would refuse to drink in a pub that displayed a signed photograph of Dennis Bergkamp in his Arse.. kit , but I made an exception for this one as I quite liked the Three Kings and the framed photo fitted in quite well with the rest of the tat hanging from the pub walls.
I will also make an exception, as I'm led to believe a previous landlord's (or could even be the present one's) old man used to run The Hope and Anchor in Islington in its punk heyday.
On this balmy summers evening with all four doors open , The Three Kings was a really good place for a few beers. Lots of people drinking outside and the steps and the St James church steps were fully utilised. And even inside it was airy enough to for a decent al fresco feeling.
The three handpumps this evening were TT Landlord, Pride and Deuchars IPA. Unfortunately the Deuchars was off but the Landlord and the pride were in good nick.
Yes the décor is quirky and it does have the feeling of being a themed student bar, and if you venture up the stairs to the two rooms and associated small kitchen you could well be forgiven in thinking you'd stepped into an 80's student bedsit..
But in conclusion, a pub with a bit of character and I enjoyed my evening at The Three Kings

On 27th June 2009 - rating: 8
[User has posted 1770 recommendations about 1714 pubs]

Please Note: This review is over a year old.

Rex Rattus left this review about The Three Kings

This is a quirky little pub just off Clerkenwall Green. Apparently the Three Kings in question are Elvis; Henry VIII; and King Kong. There’s nothing unusual in the way of real ales on offer (I think we may have been drinking Bombardier or Pride) but I felt it to be a really welcoming little pub. I would be very happy to drop in again for a pint when I’m in the area.

On 7th March 2008 - rating: 6
[User has posted 2592 recommendations about 2506 pubs]

Please Note: This review is over a year old.

Alan Winfield left this review about The Three Kings

The Three Kings is situated in a quiet area of Clerkenwell.
This pub seems to appear in lots of books about London pubs,so while in the area me and the wife thought we would give it a go.
Once inside we only noticed a single room where the bar was,this room had lots of bits and bobs dotted around and was fairly small.
There were three real ales on the bar,we had a drink of Youngs bitter which went down well on a warm evening,the other beers were,London Pride and Old Speckled Hen.
This was a decent pub to have drink in,but not one to stay for a session.

Pub visited 17/8/2006

On 17th August 2006 - rating: 7
[User has posted 6113 recommendations about 6113 pubs]

Please Note: This review is over a year old.

Roger Button left this review about The Three Kings

Remember that old Eiffel Tower in a snowstorm that Aunt Agnes brought back from Paris when you were a kid. Well give it to the Three Kings. They will find a loving home for it alongside all the other weird, quirky, tacky, unusual and downright eccentric bric-a-brac that can be found lining the shelves and windowsills. A plastic rhino head casts its eye in a watchful gaze over the candlelit bar. A plastic Chinese lion waves gleefully underneath it. Pictures, posters, mirrors, and flyers advertising anything and everything fill in any space on the walls that are left. Anything that looks out of place is well suited to this pub. I would not like to be the cleaner who has to dust everything but I am quite happy to be a customer, sampling any of the 3 well kept beers. The rest of the single room main bar is quite basic with bare floorboards and plain décor and it is fair to say that the interior is, in its own way, pleasantly grim. There is an upstairs but but I didn't have time to sample it. Full of character and set in a village type area of London, this is one of the more unusual pubs in London and well worth tracking down.

On 16th November 2005 - rating: 7
[User has posted 1238 recommendations about 1232 pubs]