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Picture of The White Lion
Image posted by Graham Coombs
Submitted on Saturday, 26th May 2018
With picture contributions to 3439 other pubs
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The White Lion, St. Albans

91 Sopwell Lane
St. Albans
AL1 1RN
Phone: 01727850540
Correct details

Pub Type

Punch Taverns

Served areas

Reviews of The White Lion (Average Rating: 7 of 10) Add Review see review guidelines

Pub SignMan left this review about The White Lion

One of many backstreet boozers in this part of St Albans, this is a slightly modernised two bar pub with a disproportionate layout. The entrance porch offers a choice of doorways leading left to the main bar and right to a very small, almost snug-like front bar. This smaller room has a long bench down the front wall and the servery directly opposite, with one final table and chairs at the far end of the room. It looked like a classic local’s bar which I can imagine quickly fills up with the pub’s regulars, but on my mid-week visit, the bar was declared out of bounds to customers and I was instead asked to go through to the main bar instead. This is a much larger space with the servery to the right and a good deal of currently useless bare boarded vertical drinking space opposite, with one or two high tables and stools around the perimeter. To the rear of the room, a slightly raised, carpeted area offers chair and button backed banquette seating under walls decorated with bland paintings, a large clock and some plain mirrors plus what appeared to be an out of action dartboard. Meanwhile, the room extends into an extremely basic rectangular side room with more button backed banquettes down the front and rear walls serving a limited number of tables, with some seemingly having been removed to aid the process of social distancing. The décor here was a marginal improvement on the rest of the room, with some contemporary posters on the back wall, such as the beer periodic table and a beer style poster, at least holding some degree of interest. Plenty of fairy lights have been strewn around the place, which normally gives a pub a surprisingly warm and cosy feel, but that effect was lost somewhat as these seemed to be wired straight into the National Grid, such was their collective brightness. There was only one other group in when I visited, making this the quietest of the five pubs I stopped in, but there was at least a cool retro soundtrack playing in the background to break the awkward silence.
Four handpulls were in use when I arrived, offering a choice of St Austell Tribute, Adnams Ghost Ship, Sharps Atlantic and a real cider. Having just had a pint of Ghost Ship in the previous pub, I opted for the Tribute here, served to me by a friendly, if terminally bored, barmaid, and it was in pretty good shape considering the low turnout.
I found this place a little hard to warm to on this visit, perhaps because of the stilted atmosphere and the empty feeling interior with its missing furniture. I can imagine you could have a good time here if you were able to secure a seat in the front bar on a busy evening, but under the current pandemic conditions, this place fell a bit flat and falls down the pecking order somewhat as a result.

On 18th November 2020 - rating: 6
[User has posted 2545 recommendations about 2545 pubs]


Please Note: This review is over a year old.


Graham Coombs left this review about The White Lion

Cosy backstreet pub of some age, with low ceilings, small windows and beams, the latter sadly painted in shades of green and grey. There is a separate snug bar to the right, and a back room, with a fairly rustic garden at the back. Some good ales on offer, including a couple from the XT brewery at time of visit, and in very good order.

On 24th May 2018 - rating: 8
[User has posted 2268 recommendations about 2216 pubs]


Please Note: This review is over a year old.


Ian Mapp left this review about The White Lion

6 real ales and good food. Oakham JHB in great condition. Very friendly service - bar man is also the waiter but was doing a sterling job. Lots of choice in St Albans but this did things well.

Visit blogged at http://bit.ly/2x7wj5w

On 19th October 2017 - rating: 9
[User has posted 697 recommendations about 691 pubs]


View more reviews of The White Lion (11)
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Pub location see interactive map of local area
Map location corrected by Steve C
St Albans Abbey, 0.55 miles, 10 min walk (show)
St Albans City, 0.65 miles, 12 min walk (show)
Park Street, 1.97 miles, 38 min walk (show)
Latest updates View all updates for The White Lion, St. Albans
18th Nov 2020, 16:08
Review submitted by Pub SignMan
 
26th May 2018, 08:59
Picture submitted by Graham Coombs approved

Pub Details

Pub details supplied by members of this site to the best of their knowledge. Please check with pub directly before making a special trip.

  • Accommodation : No last updated 24 May 2018 by Graham Coombs
  • Bar Billiards : No last updated 24 May 2018 by Graham Coombs
  • Beer Festivals : Yes - August - last updated 29 July 2013 by Dave McNally
  • Beer Garden : Yes last updated 26 February 2015 by Will Larter
  • Car Park : No last updated 24 May 2018 by Graham Coombs
  • Child Friendly : Yes last updated 18 November 2020 by Pub SignMan
  • Darts : Yes last updated 07 August 2013 by Quinno _
  • Dog Friendly : Yes last updated 18 November 2020 by Pub SignMan
  • Function Room : No last updated 18 November 2020 by Pub SignMan
  • Hot Food : Yes last updated 26 February 2015 by Will Larter
  • Jukebox : No last updated 24 May 2018 by Graham Coombs
  • Karaoke : No last updated 24 May 2018 by Graham Coombs
  • Live Music : Yes last updated 26 February 2015 by Will Larter
  • Live TV Sports : Yes last updated 26 February 2015 by Will Larter
  • Micropub : No last updated 24 May 2018 by Graham Coombs
  • Pinball : No last updated 24 May 2018 by Graham Coombs
  • Pool Table : No last updated 24 May 2018 by Graham Coombs
  • Real Ale : Yes last updated 21 October 2010 by Moby Duck
  • Real Cider : Yes last updated 26 February 2015 by Will Larter
  • WiFi : Yes last updated 24 May 2018 by Graham Coombs
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