Just yards away from Blackfriars Bridge, this jolly friar stands guard above an Art Nouveau Grade II listed pub – perfect for a bit of culture alongside your chosen libation.
The pub was built in 1875 on the site of a Dominican friary, which stood here from 1279 to 1539 . It is now protected as a listed building but we also owe its continued existence to John Betjeman who campaigned successfully for its salvation in the 1960s.
It was remodelled in 1905 by architect H. Fuller-Clark and artist Henry Poole, both keen exponents of the Arts and Crafts Movement. A multitude of friars feature in windows, sculptures and copper reliefs inside the pub.
The friendly staff serve a good selection of beers, wines and other drinks. They change their ales regularly and they offer an App and a newsletter to help you stay up-to-date. They also feature a Durham ale that I’m quite partial too: Sonnet 43 American Pale Ale.
I haven’t eaten here (you can see my priorities!) so I can’t vouch for the food, but the cosy restaurant area at the back of the pub certainly looks very inviting.