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Picture of The Harp
Image posted by Jon B
Submitted on Monday, 13th May 2019
With picture contributions to 325 other pubs
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The Harp, Charing Cross, WC2

48 Chandos Place
WC2
WC2N 4HS
Phone: 02078360291
Correct details

Served areas

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Reviews of The Harp (Average Rating: 9 of 10) Add Review see review guidelines

Quinno _ left this review about The Harp

Things are ticking over fairly well since the acquisition by Fullers, who so far have stayed good to their word and made minimal alterations to the ale range and ethos of the pub. My pint of Dark Star Hophead was excellent (NBSS 4) but the taste proved to me that it’s being brewed in Chiswick – and is less good for it. As an aside it felt odd, and slightly dispiriting given the previous incumbent’s commitment to practical feminism, to see only males behind the bar. Still a Zone 1 winner.

April 2016
Usual good beer and service last week, Twickenham Harp was in decent shape. The gents toilets have now moved and are bigger and much less of a health hazard as they are not halfway up the stairs now! Rated 9

Jan 2015 First visit post-Fullers takeover and surprisingly (and thankfully) just a lone Pride pump as the Fullers cuckoo in the Harp’s nest. Service standards and beer quality/choice maintained - good pints of Dark Star Critical Mass and Triple FFF Can't Remember as well as numerous other interesting choices. Packed as usual. Top pub. Rated 9

May 2014
These days the Harp is a CAMRA National Pub of the Year award winner and has travelled a long way from its days as the Welsh Harp, then owned by Punch. Today it is a genuine freehouse run by the semi-legendary ‘Binnie’ Walsh (who bought the lease) and her team of mainly female staff. It seems right to start with the drinking aspect – there are eight ales on the go nowadays (up from six when I first went in way back in 2005). Usually you’ll find Harveys Sussex Best, Sambrooks Wandle and a Dark Star brew on the go alongside thoughtful and unusual guest ales. These days the quality of almost every pint is top-notch. There’s now also a really good range of proper ciders and perries behind the bar too. The service behind the bar is excellent – engaging, friendly and knowledgeable, even when the place is packed (as it often is after 5pm). Service is swift but not sloppy.

The pub is located in a (slightly) quieter area of Covent Garden, less than five minutes from Charing Cross and a few yards walk to Trafalgar Square. The pretty exterior features lots of leaded stained glass. The long and narrow interior is based over two floors. The lower, with a bare wooden floor, large mirrors and numerous portraits of long-dead gentry is where the bar is located. It’s pretty small and can get crowded very quick, with drinkers often spilling outside onto the pavement. The large front window (replete with Harp motif) can be fully folded back to allow al fresco drinking from within the pub, which draws in light but also quite often smoke from the ciggie addicts standing a couple of feet away. The upstairs room used to be very drab, functional and lifeless but has been overhauled, making it a comfy place to settle and take in the interesting view down Adelaide Street. Food is offered in the form of sausages. The atmosphere is often bustling with a varied clientèle mix, not just stereotypical CAMRA types. A trip to the toilets after a few is an experience due to the narrow ‘no passing’ winding staircase and distinct lack of turning circle when you get to the door. This small but homely pub should be on every pub enthusiast’s list and I’d rank it as being one of the Top 5 within Zone 1. Rated 9

On 27th September 2019 - rating: 9
[User has posted 3912 recommendations about 3900 pubs]


Jon B left this review about The Harp

Proper pub full of proper pub people. Lively and busy on a Monday night. Obviously well worth a visit even if just for the top class mild (highly recommended by a regular at the bar, and he wasn’t wrong)

On 13th May 2019 - rating: 9
[User has posted 625 recommendations about 617 pubs]


Please Note: This review is over a year old.


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

Thankfully, the Harp has retained its reputation following the Fuller's takeover, so always very crowded after work (and generally busy at other times) but well worth venturing inside to get a first-class pint from the ten handpumps. On this visit, I found the usual excellent mix of regular ales such as Pride, Harvey's and Hophead and ever-changing guests in a variety of styles (e.g. Tankleys English Golden Ale - sensibly advised in advance to be naturally hazy and more expensive than usual at £4.60 due to 5.7% strength). The building has a narrow frontage with fully opening windows, and the bar itself is pretty compact (and a tight squeeze to get to the back). However, the staff are notably efficient, so once you make it to the counter you get served quickly. However, there is also an upstairs room with more seating which is usually much calmer (and also a back door to a rather dingy alleyway if all else fails). Justifiably a local and national Camra award winner, and thoroughly recommended (albeit with the caveat that it can be a victim of its own success insofar as getting often so busy as to be distinctly uncomfortable).

On 3rd June 2017 - rating: 9
[User has posted 5735 recommendations about 5735 pubs]


View more reviews of The Harp (25)
This pub features in the following crawls:
Gillhalfpint by train man
WC1 & 2 Good Beer Guide pubs by Roy Collins
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Pub location see interactive map of local area
Map location corrected by Rex Rattus
London Charing Cross, 0.2 miles, 3 min walk (show)
London Waterloo, 0.99 miles, 19 min walk (show)
London Blackfriars, 1.86 miles, 35 min walk (show)
Latest updates View all updates for The Harp, WC2
27th Sep 2019, 15:15
Review submitted by Quinno _ amended by Quinno _
 
25th Sep 2019, 23:52
Picture submitted by Quinno _ 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 27 September 2019 by Quinno _
  • Bar Billiards : No last updated 27 September 2019 by Quinno _
  • Beer Festivals : No last updated 27 September 2019 by Quinno _
  • Beer Garden : No last updated 27 September 2019 by Quinno _
  • CAMRA Discount : Yes - 10% - last updated 27 September 2019 by Quinno _
  • Car Park : No last updated 27 September 2019 by Quinno _
  • Child Friendly : No last updated 27 September 2019 by Quinno _
  • Darts : No last updated 27 September 2019 by Quinno _
  • Dog Friendly : No last updated 27 September 2019 by Quinno _
  • Function Room : No last updated 27 September 2019 by Quinno _
  • Hot Food : Yes - Lunchtime only - last updated 27 September 2019 by Quinno _
  • Jukebox : No last updated 27 September 2019 by Quinno _
  • Karaoke : No last updated 27 September 2019 by Quinno _
  • Live Music : No last updated 27 September 2019 by Quinno _
  • Live TV Sports : No last updated 27 September 2019 by Quinno _
  • Micropub : No last updated 27 September 2019 by Quinno _
  • Pinball : No last updated 27 September 2019 by Quinno _
  • Pool Table : No last updated 27 September 2019 by Quinno _
  • Quiz Night : No last updated 27 September 2019 by Quinno _
  • Real Ale : Yes last updated 27 September 2019 by Quinno _
  • Real Cider : Yes last updated 27 September 2019 by Quinno _
  • Wheelchair Access : No last updated 27 September 2019 by Quinno _
  • WiFi : Yes - O2 by Fullers - last updated 26 February 2018 by paulof horsham
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