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Pub Of The Month - June 2022 with Tris39 on the Pub Forum

The Gardeners, SW18

Pub added by elizabeth mcgraw
268 Merton Road
SW18 5JL
Phone: 02088751524

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

Pub SignMan left this review about The Gardeners

This is a large pub on the road between Wandsworth and Earlsfield, that has sadly been butchered by the Young’s interior design team. Entering via a front patio with a good amount of garden furniture alongside a pretty busy main road, you find yourself in a spacious opened out room dominated by a large island servery that would clearly have once served a series of rooms around its circumference, but now stands isolated in the centre of the room. The whole room has smart modern floorboards and a bland white paint scheme that is broken by a few bits of quirky animal-themed wallpaper and some dull features that Youngs seem to think will make their pub more appealing. These include a rear wall painted with a leafy mural with the pub’s name across it, but then overlaid with a load of old pipes, valves and meters, creating this weird natural/industrial hybrid feature. Other such dross included wall-mounted fake animal heads, lots of potted plants, a collection of teapots above the coffee and tea station and a bookcase topped with even more greenery. The bar has possibly kept its original counter, which follows a nice curved line and has a polished stone top, but no bar back to speak of due to the removal of the old partitioning walls. A good mix of seating, mainly high tables served by benches and stools, but also a few tables and chairs, some armchairs and a sofa to the rear left next to an attractive fireplace with a vase full of wheat on the hearth and an unused TV screen above. A room to the right seemed to be set up more for diners, with very bland decor and furniture, livened up slightly by some Warhol-esque portraits of various pop culture figures. Tunes played quietly in the background and there were a fair few people in on a Tuesday night.
This super dull pub needed a super dull ale range to round out the experience, and this was duly provided with Youngs Ordinary and Special available on cask alongside an appropriate guest ale of Sharps Doom Bar. The Special was anything but and the barmaid that served me seemed a little annoyed at having to get up off her bar stool to pour my pint.
This was probably a nice pub once upon a time, but it’s nothing more than a shell these days, offering the chance to drink subpar beer in a cavernous blandscape. There are a few redeeming features here and there but I really didn’t take to this place and wouldn’t consider a return visit, when you can find far superior pubs in either direction from here.

On 21st January 2022 - rating: 4
[User has posted 2805 recommendations about 2805 pubs]

Please Note: This review is over a year old.

Rex Rattus left this review about The Gardeners

This is a Young’s pub, with St Austell Tribute on as a guest. The Tribute tasted fine, but at £1.75 a half (thus circa £3.50 a pint) at the top end of the price range for non-Central London. This looks like a typical Young’s pub. There’s a central island bar now, with all manner of furnishings surrounding it – armchairs, sofas, banquettes, tall benches/tall tables, plus some normal tables and chairs. A separate, but inter-connected, room on the right had most tables set for diners, however the menu advertised some pretty standard pub grub – burger and chips at £7.95, and sandwiches at around the £5 - £6 mark. The tables sported the unusually seen contrast of small candles and beer mats. The decor in the main room comprised mainly photographs of London scenes, but there was a rather nice Bass brewery mirror on the wall at the back. I spotted a couple of TVs on the walls, but switched off during my weekday lunchtime visit. Apparently there is a beer garden at the rear, which I didn’t visit, and there are also a fair number of picnic benches at the front set back from the main road.
Clearly this is nothing like the traditional boozer it once was, but I found the service to be friendly and welcoming, and the Tribute was a decent drop of ale. There’s nothing special about this pub, in my opinion, that would drag me out of my way to visit again, but it’s a decent enough place to stop off for a pint if you’re passing.

On 28th May 2011 - rating: 5
[User has posted 2599 recommendations about 2513 pubs]