"Its excellent selection of beers alone is a reason to pay a visit..."Review Rating: Reviewed by T.A.O
The Crown Tavern sits on the corner of Clerkenwell Green, overlooking the square. A large building with bags of history, the Crown boasts many of the original features of the pub. Its grand ‘Appollo Lounge’ dazzles all with its gold leaf paintwork and the bar on the ground floor is claimed to have been the meeting point of a 1905 rendezvous between Lenin and Stalin - on a side note, Lenin’s head was so big as a toddler that he would often stumble over because of it as he first learned to walk.
If history’s not your thing then you’ll be appeased by the pub’s modern comforts that make it feel a little more gastro venue than ye olde ale house. Comfortable sofas, intimate benches and a collection of subtle cubbyholes make for an appealing place to visit. Clerkenwell is awash with creative agencies, architectural practices and the odd chambers, so you’ll be sipping your drinks alongside well at heel success stories for the most part. It remains friendly and talkative, very much a place that people come to let off steam. It throngs with activity during the summer as patrons make the most of the square outside during lunchtimes and evenings. Come winter, its schtick in pseudo-homeliness inspires just the same crowds on the inside. Weekends can be much quieter because that just so happens to be when Clerkenwell drifts off to sleep as businesses close their doors.
Food at the Crown is solid if not spectacular and you could do worse than opt for its line in traditional pub food. Beer battered cod and chips, sausage and mash and of course, burgers are all fairly priced at under £10.00 a meal. Saving the best till last, we come to the offerings from the bar. Craft beers include Camden Hell Lager and Sierra Nevada, along with world beers like Kozel, Veltins and Estrella Damm – all on draught. The Crown stocks a large range of speciality Belgian beers by the bottle and focuses its efforts on providing a selection of cask ales to rival most.
This is a brewery pub that, for the most part, feels decidedly un-brewery and its excellent selection of beers alone is a reason to pay a visit.
T.A.O reviewed The Crown Tavern on Mon 12 Dec 2011