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The Old Toll Bar, Kingston, Glasgow

3 Paisley Road West
G51 1LF

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Reviews (Current Rating Average: 8 of 10) Add Review see review guidelines

Please Note: This review is over a year old.

Pub SignMan left this review about The Old Toll Bar

This fine historic pub has recently been given a new lease of life following a significant restoration by its new owners. The pub has a bit of an unfortunate location in an area generally neglected by visitors, but is worth a visit thanks to an opulent interior that must rank up there with the best the city can offer. The building is a slightly unusual shape, which means that you find yourself entering into a very shallow but wide room with entrances at either end. The room is dominated by a stunning servery along the rear wall which has a chunky counter with a modern marble top and an extremely impressive bar back which boasts eight large alcoves, each holding some beautiful polished oak whisky casks either side of a central shelving unit topped by a pub clock. There is also a decorative insert which includes some carved stag's heads and the overall effect is certainly very striking when you first enter. A collection of board games was stacked at one end of the bar and included a rather nice looking chess set with hand carved pieces. Smart red vinyl banquettes run opposite the bar under the front windows, broken up by a series of large square pillars with lots of decorative embellishments. There is a very nice detailed stained glass porch to the left and some enormous mirrors cover almost the entire right hand wall and corridor space behind the bar, including one for McEwan's Ales and another advertising Gold & Black pressure filtered whisky. Bob Marley tunes were playing on vinyl throughout much of my stay at a suitably quiet volume.
I arrived here in what can best be described as blizzard conditions and the barman was very helpful in supplying a seemingly never ending succession of napkins to help me dry off somewhat! There was just one ale on handpull - Tryst Cannonade - with another pump sporting a turned clip, but three more beers were listed on a board, including brews from Merchants and Mallinsons, and I later wondered whether these had been and gone or whether they were still available via the unmarked keg taps. My half of the Cannonade was past its best and had I ordered a pint I would've almost certainly sent it back.
This place doesn't easily lend itself to a crawl around the city and isn't in a part of town you're likely to find yourself wandering through, but it's well worth a look for it's well restored interior and interesting historical features. I'm hoping that the beer quality issue was a one off, although with just one other customer in on this visit (admittedly during dreadful weather conditions), I wonder if they get enough footfall to make a couple of real ales a viable prospect.

On 6th May 2018 - rating: 7
[User has posted 2512 recommendations about 2512 pubs]

Please Note: This review is over a year old.

David Ross left this review about The Old Toll Bar

Located in an unfashionable and rather run down area of the city, this comes as a major surprise when you step through the door. The interior is extremely impressive, with a magnificent gantry, dark polished wood walls and bar counter and huge ornate brewery mirrors reaching up to a high ceiling. With the exception of the TVs and games machines, it doesn’t look to have changed much for a century. The draught selection includes Caledonia Best, Guinness, Tennent’s lager, Stella Artois, Leffe and Blackthorn cider. It’s amazingly good value, with all pints being advertised at £2.30 (which is the normal price, rather than a special offer). Food is available in the “Old Toll Café,” which is downstairs from the bar and part of the same establishment. If it was in the city centre, this could be a major tourist draw and it’s worth a trip out for if you’re interested in old pub interiors. Both Shields Road and Kinning Park Subway stations are within about 5 minutes walk.

On 8th October 2013 - rating: 9
[User has posted 769 recommendations about 683 pubs]