The Well, Clerkenwell
Ask any Londoner where they prefer to socialise: pub, bar or restaurant – I guarantee the majority will name at least three of their favourtie pubs, with detailed explanations on what makes them so special. The best pubs understand their clientèle and provide the perfect mix of a relaxed atmosphere, great service and a large selection of ales and ciders (to all of those pubs that do not serve Guinness, my next post will be a name and shame!). However, with so much choice, it can be hard to know where to go for an after work drink or pub lunch – especially if you are feeling adventurous enough to go further than your local.
I am based in South London. This means that I am privileged enough to have some great ‘locals’ which I regularly frequent. From the Montpelier pub in Peckham to the Stormbird and even the Hermits Cave in Camberwell, I am pretty spoilt for choice. (I also travel to the Nags Head in Walthamstow Village, not south London but definitely worth a mention).
In fact, I am so spoilt, that if it wasn’t for a recent visit to The Rosebery, in Clerkenwell I may never have visited The Well…and what a crime that would have been.
You know when you walk into a pub and you immediately think ‘this is going to be fun!’, that’s The Well.
Situated within walking distance of Farringdon station, the crowd at the well are a mixed bag. The thing is, The Well is not ‘themed’ enough to attract any one particular type. It’s not glossy enough for the suits, edgy enough for media types or cheap enough for students – it just is. And this is why The Well is worth a visit. It is a gastro pub with no gimmicks, just quality food, great service and a pretty impressive wine and cocktail list.
Sizzling ‘Queenie’ scallops, with wild garlic was followed by lobster with fries and then a delicious bitter chocolate tart with salted caramel ice cream. Are you drooling yet? You should be, each dish was a foody’s wet dream! The flavours paid testament to both the quality of the food and the talents of the chef. This is not pub food as you know it – this is restaurant food, served in a wonderfully warm and welcoming pub environment.
There is a difference between being attentive and overbearing. Some people get it, others don’t. Our waitress was super fun, had great banter and an equally good knowledge of every dish on the menu. There were moments when she would come over just to suggest a cocktail or to fill our glasses. On her recommendation, I tried a type of strawberry daiquiri with black pepper! Trust me, just try it.
Walking distance from Farringdon Station. No lifts, moderate space for wheelchair navigation. Ground floor toilets. No alternative formats.
180 St John Street