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The Sheaf, SE1

24 Southwark Street
Phone: 02074079934

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

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Gill Smith left this review about The Wheatsheaf

Enjoyed our visit to this pub on Friday. The last call at the end of a long day, and we chose Idle Honey Porter from the selection available. Close enough to the busy Borough area, but seemed a calm oasis and very pleasant to drink in. 2011 Good Beer Guide entry.

On 4th September 2011 - rating: 7
[User has posted 1306 recommendations about 1196 pubs]

Please Note: This review is over a year old.

Roger Button left this review about The Wheatsheaf

When the original Wheatsheaf situated just round the corner closed at beginning of 2009 to accommodate a major new railway project, its spirit was moved lock, stock and several barrels to its present temporary home in the basement of the Hop Exchange building which had previously housed a bar called the Hop Cellar.

The interior is far more spacious than the small entrance suggests and even at its busiest I have never been found wanting for a seat or table. Dividing screens breaks up the open plan nature and at the rear, 2 alcolves can be used for small private functions. There is also a spacious darts area situated in an unobtrusive room to the side of the entrance. The shallow barrel brick ceilings emphasise the basement feel although it is a lot less gloomy and dingy as you may initially expect. Multiple screens fold down from the ceilings but are quite badly positioned and only really cater for the barflies, of which there are usually several. The black & white photos adorning the walls are portraits of the regulars from the old pub that were been transferred over to the new premises.

Whereas the original Wheatsheaf was a Youngs house (albeit managed by the small but expanding Redcar chain), the new Wheatsheaf is a different beast altogether when it comes to the ales with at least 9 always available, usually 2 or 3 specially brewed (or branded) by Nethergate (Redcar Best, Summer and Wheatsheaf), Youngs Ordinary & Special and the remainder a rotating selection of interesting micros. Prices seem a bit steep but are about average for the area.

Whilst it has more of a bar feel than a pub, I do find myself using the place quite regularly as an alternative to the more bustling Market Porter, its major competitor in the area and it is quite easy to while away an evening here.

When the old mothballed Wheatsheaf reopens (expected to be early 2013) minus its upper floor which has been lopped off to make way for a railway viaduct, it is not clear what will happen to this place but I would expect it to remain in the hands of Redcar (who also run Katzenjammers Bierkellar in the adjoining basement next door) in which case it will hopefully business as usual albeit under a new name.

On 20th August 2010 - rating: 8
[User has posted 1238 recommendations about 1232 pubs]

Please Note: This review is over a year old.

Gill Smith left this review about The Wheatsheaf

There were a few steps down to to the Wheatsheaf and the ceiling gave it a cellar feel being painted brickwork. There were 10 pumps and we selected Nethergate Redcar Best Bitter and Tring Ducketts Delight at £3.15. The room layout was good and there were a couple of small rooms with just one big table in each. Food menu was impressive and reasonable. There was an area with a dartboard. Impressive clean and tidy pub.

On 24th March 2010 - rating: 7
[User has posted 1306 recommendations about 1196 pubs]

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Chris 87 left this review about The Wheatsheaf

SE1 is the best area of London for good pubs in my opinion, with many great examples packed all within walking distance of each other. Just around the corner from Borough Market lies the newly relocated Wheatsheaf, a large cellar bar that was a welcome retreat from the cold outside. It has one large bar which permanently serves Youngs Special and Bitter, and an impressive array of guests which on my visit included ales from Red Car, Wolf, Elgood, Nethergate and other breweries. My pints of Red Car Best and Elgood Copper Feelgood were £3.10 and £3.20 respectively, about standard for the area although I would agree with some of the other reviewers that it was a little on the cold side.

I quite liked it here and would return, and it would certainly figure as part of an SE1 pub crawl but my only gripe would be there baffling policy on showing football. The pub has sky sports, but upon my asking whether they would mind switching it to the Everton v Manchester United game, I was told 'we don't show football on saturdays'. I don't quite understand this; are they worried about trouble? This is borough market for pity's sake, the only trouble you get round here is some scallywag being overcharged for his organic free range fair trade Fennel. Are they happy to show football the rest of the week? They seemed perfectly content to show golf and cricket, which obviously are less troublesome. Or maybe they rotate depending on the day? Frankly bizarre. And left a poor taste in the mouth really.

On 21st February 2010 - rating: 7
[User has posted 179 recommendations about 179 pubs]

Please Note: This review is over a year old.

Pub SignMan left this review about The Wheatsheaf

Large vaulted cellar, just below street level near London Bridge station. The room is furnished with an odd mixture of plush sofas and canteen-style long tables and benches, which doesn't quite do enough to make this feel more 'pub' than 'wine-bar'.
However, it is the beer selection which is the real draw. There were a couple of pumps dispensing Young's Ordinary and Special, but an additional eight or nine guests all listed on a blackboard near the entrance. I tried the Vale Hadda's Winter Solstice (£3.20) which was wonderful reward after a long trudge through the snow.
The staff were efficient and very friendly and a crowd steadily started to build from around 5pm onwards which created a nice vibe. I was somewhat reluctant to step back out into the cold, but I am fairly sure this won't be my last visit.

On 5th February 2010 - rating: 8
[User has posted 2492 recommendations about 2492 pubs]

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Steve C left this review about The Wheatsheaf

I usually find cellar bars to be a bit depressing, but this place has been done out well and you soon forget that you are below street level. There is a large ale selection along with some standard and premium draught products and I found the staff to be friendly and I was served promptly even though the place was heaving with local office staff on their Christmas parties.

Sky Sports is shown and I spotted two plasma screens along with a dartboard that is in an alcove to the left of the entrance. The music was a little loud for my liking, but it was Christmas party night so it was to be expected.

This place is certainly worth a look if in the London Bridge area.

On 4th February 2010 - rating: 8
[User has posted 3586 recommendations about 3565 pubs]

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Nigel Sheppard left this review about The Wheatsheaf

What a find, a great boozer with really helpful staff and great beer, both selection and quality. located in a large underground cellar it is an ideal venue for a real ale pub, The area is nicely divided up so you can sit together in small groups around tables or stand at the bar...don't miss this one!

On 25th October 2009 - rating: 10
[User has posted 192 recommendations about 192 pubs]

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john mcgraw left this review about The Hop Cellars

This cellar pub is underneath the impressive Hop Exchange and has moved location from around the corner.It is a well laid out pub and serves up to 10 real ales from far and wide.

On 31st August 2009 - rating: 8
[User has posted 2044 recommendations about 2025 pubs]

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Malden man left this review about The Wheatsheaf

Not too sure I like the windowless feel, and low vaulted ceilings, as it feels a bit claustrophobic when busy. The exposed brick walls are covered in black and white portrait photos, someone suggests these are former regulars of the old Wheatsheaf? If so there are one hell of a lot of them!
A mix of seating from sofas to ordinary chairs and tables plus bar stools. A very strange room at the back with a dining table and a selection of chairs reminded me of some kind of boardroom. A front alcove houses a dartboard.
Now for the beer, a decent range, Youngs Ordinary and Special, Red Car IPA, badged as Return of the Sheaf, Red Car Best Bitter, St George's Charger, Thwaites Original, Elgoods Double Swan, Black Hole Super Nova, Nethergate Umbel Ale, however they are served at a temperature befitting a lager. There really is no point having decent ale on if it is too chilled to taste properly. Perhaps the cellar is cold, who knows but this really does need sorting out. Oh, and lose the tea light candles on the tables too please.
Still its good to see a reborn pub following the enforced closure of the original Wheatsheaf on nearby Stoney Street.

On 15th May 2009 - rating: 6
[User has posted 1687 recommendations about 1663 pubs]

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