White Horse, The
Taps: - / Bottles: -
Cask: / Beer-to-Go: N
Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 32 | Reviews: 32
United Kingdom (England)
3.75/5 rDev -9.9%
vibe: 2 | quality: 4 | service: 3 | selection: 5 | $$$
This is a well known pub to any London beer geek, and it is not hard to see why. The first thing that strikes you when you enter is the selection of beers on tap, most notably Duchesse De Bourgogne, and two trappist beer from St. Bernardus - trappist ales on tap in Britain is somewhat of a rarity.
The selection of bottles is without doubt the best you will get in London at any bar, if not the whole country. The beauty of the bottle list is that they will hold pretty much every single bottle on the list in stock at all times, which a lot of places don't do, not mentioning any names...*cough* Porterhouse.
Unfortunately, the atmosphere was a big let down, and I know I am not the only person who has found this. In London it is know as the Sloany Pony, and this is due to the high proportion of posh money-flashing knobheads that seem to like to frequent the place. Normally this doesn't bother me at all but if you visit you will get what I mean.
Service wasn't great, may have been that I just kept getting the disinterest bar staff but they weren't that knowledgeable or helpful really...shame.
Having said all that, it is somewhere that I will definitely go back to, with the range of beer they have I will not be able to resist.
10-14-2009 19:08:45 | More by PartyBear
4.25/5 rDev +2.2%
vibe: 2 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 5 | food: 4.5 | $$$
The atmosphere is OK but always overcrowded so that s a big let down and they re mainly posh tossers and wankers with big attitudes and no clue of beer...
The quality of drink food and service is good though - the bar staff are chatty and friendly
The selection of on-tap and bottled beer is briiliant best in all of London remotely challenged only by the Rake
It is a bit expensive though like everywhere in London but the selection and quality do justify the prices - I wish it were less crowded and a different crowd though
09-30-2009 19:46:21 | More by DerBayer
4.46/5 rDev +7.2%
vibe: 4 | quality: 5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4 | $$
Visited 1/8/08, 3/8/08.
I learned here that the Bernardus monk is the same bloke as the Westvleteren one. 'Nuff said.
A charming little place on Parsons Green itself, stuffed with big comfy chairs, bench tables, and beer memorabilia. All wood, no tvs or electronic stuff here.
Bottles are well represented for this part of the world, from Belgians to Brits (with some Americans thrown in).
I counted at least 30 taps/pumps, covering some standard UK brewers (Harveys, Adnams, Oakam, etc.), Belgians (Westmalle, Duchesse de Bourgogne), Germans (Hacker-Pschorr, Schneider, Rothaus), and even Americans (SN, Anchor). Everything I had was fresh, no problems there. Also glasses to match most of their breweries. Value is good for the city and the area, pints are between £2.40 and £7 depending what you order, with most between £2.40 and £4. Bottles range in price as they stock some rare and vintage English stuff.
I looked at the Westvleteren glasses longingly but they didn't seem to have any in stock. What I've had here:
- 1/8/08 - SNPA (£4)
- 3/8/08 - Dark Star HopHead (£2.40)
- 3/8/08 - Old Slug Porter (£2.90)
All the pint glasses fit the hand well and have weighted bottoms. Washed prior to pumping and filled to the top with an experts touch.
Good mix of clientele from young people to middle aged, drinking a mix of cask, lager, wine, and mixed drinks (that looked really good...). Staff are friendly and quick to serve.
In my opinion the best drinking establishment in London, hands down.
08-03-2008 15:30:07 | More by Antilochus
3.83/5 rDev -7.9%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 3.5 | food: 4 | $$$
I was in London for four days, and I dont go often, so as much as possible I wanted to check out what Id heard was a thriving specialty beer scene. Honestly, my sense is that the craft beer movement in London is about 10 or so years behind the U.S. not intended as a criticism, just my (admittedly limited) assessment of the situation. With that context in mind, the White Horse is a very good place, but its not on par yet with the best beer bars in the U.S.
Its a big place as much a restaurant as a pub (and the food was therefore a cut above most good pub food). The atmosphere is classic English pub, a little more genteel than the down-to-earth bars that make up most of my American favorites, but comfortable anyway. The selection is very large and generally pretty good (Brooklyn Chocolate Stout!), but to be honest, I was put off by some of the more obscure beers I tried there. In particular, a Russian Imperial Stout (that I wont name) tasted like soy sauce. They had a fairly good selection of Belgians, but not as many as youd find in a good U.S. craft-oriented bar. It turned out that one of the bartenders was from Chicago, so when I verified his credentials by confirming that hed spent time at the Map Room, I asked him for a recommendation. He immediately poured us a George Gales Old Ale, and he was right it was a great beer.
The management and at least this one bartender were knowledgable and enthusiastic, so Id love the chance to come back in a couple years and see what the White Horse is like then. Im betting itll only get better.
06-07-2007 19:06:05 | More by Flyer
4.25/5 rDev +2.2%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4 | $$$
aka the Sloaney Pony.This pub is very easy to find from the Parson's Green Station, it's less than a ten minute walk too! We were staying in Fulham and this became the place we would normally stop at on the way home from other crawls/touring London. It was the first place we stopped on our Saturday night crawl. Even after a Chelsea FC match, the place was mobbed, but I found the service to be great! We had two full meals and a few cheese plates all of which were spot on. The big highlight is the interesting selection of ales they had. I tried Harvey's Sussex Bitter , Adnam's Broadside, Oakham JHB, and Rooster's Yankee all of which were Killer! When in SW6 or on the district line, make a beeline for this pub.
****revisit October 2008****
Hit the white horse before the cfc v. sunderland match. A good crowd of older blues fans drinking pints of ale and looking over the match day program I was alternating the jaipur ipa with a wonderful barleywine that I can't remember the name of for the life of me had a dozen great oysters too good times and a goood result for cfc too...
10-29-2006 14:46:10 | More by surfadelic23
United Kingdom (England)
3.9/5 rDev -6.3%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 2.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4 | $$$
I visit London fairly regular and I always try and pop in here if I can. It can get really busy, so the outside drinking area is a real bonus when the weather is fine. They have Bar-B-Q's on the area sometimes too.
Inside people from all walks of life can be found enjoying the vast choice (for London) of beers. The range is always changing with good quality cask ales and continental beers dispensed through fonts. I have never tried the bottle selection, I prefer draught beers when out.
The service can let the place down, but it does get busy, as I have said already, but some of the staff haven't a clue about what they are selling, or how to add up.
The food is good and well cooked, a little expensive, even for London, but there is a good chippy close to the tube station if you are on a budget.
I have taken a lot of people here over the years for their first visit, many have returned and everyone has been impressed with the beer, food and the pub in general.
It is well away from the normal tourist areas of London, but with a day pass on the transport system and being so close to the tube line, it is easy to find and get too.
08-16-2006 09:21:59 | More by BlackHaddock
4.14/5 rDev -0.5%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | $$
Wow. 6-7 cask ales and a lot of great bottles (Anchor, Cantillon, Rodenback, Leifman, most of the Trappists). I spied an Imperial Gonzo, and even though it seemed a bit silly to drink an American beer here, I've never had one so I had to give it a good home. Old well worn wood everywhere up to the tall white ceiling. Long tables that encourage mixing of parties. A great 3-sided square bar that provided lots of spots for easy access. A large outside seating area with a barbecue grill working serving pricey hamburgers and sausages, but the prices at the bar were very reasonable.
The place started out busy, but fairly quiet at about 4 PM but by 11 when I left the place was crazy packed on a Wed. night. Clientele was fairly upscale. Started up a great conversation with a few guys that lasted many beers. The bartender commented to me that I needed to turn these guys onto Ales, as they were drinking Lagers. I did my BA bit, but didn't push it. Just tried to tell them they were in a world class restaurant and were only ordering french fries. Oh well.
Great time, I'm glad I called it a slightly early night as to not miss the Tube!
07-26-2006 12:55:11 | More by HardTarget
2.66/5 rDev -36.1%
vibe: 4 | quality: 2 | service: 1 | selection: 4.5 | $$$
What a difference a few years makes. Decided to stop by here for a quick beer with BA RichLightWeight on my way to Heathrow after an excellent weekend in London.
The whole visit was laughable. Just after midday and we entered a quiet Sloaney Pony. Given that time was pressing I ordered a half of Roosters Yankee and Rich ordered an Echte Kriek ..this is where the fun started.
Our Server - I forget his name but Ill call him Kevin as it seems appropriate as he acted like one - was a cross between Mr. Magoo, Brains from Thunderbirds, looked like Elvis Costello and had the demeanor of Inspector Clouseau. He tried to pull an Echte Kriek for Richard from the completely wrong tap; it took Richard to point out the right one. But they were still cleaning the lines, rather shabby that, good Pubs typically do that before they open. Even so when it was pointed out by another dude behind the bar (one who knew what he was doing) that they were cleaning the lines, he still tried to pull an Echte Kriek from the tap Richard was pointing to go figure! OK, so he gave up on that and said it was being cleaned and then proceeded to tell Richard about other keg Lagers that they had WTF!? OK, so my turn, Ill take a half of Roosters Yankee, took him a while to find the right Handpump and then he grabbed a Pint glass, I reminded him that I wanted a half only duh! Finally after all that, we find that he has all the Mathematic skills of an Enron Accountant. He stood at the bar trying to work out the prices and then wanted some £5 odd for the two halves, both Richard and I reminded him that we had half Pints took another minute or too to figure that out ..I am thinking dude you have a cash register to add up for you ..but there in also lay trouble, he didnt seem to know how to use it, it took all of 5 minutes (no exaggeration) to get my change, at times I figured he had fallen asleep standing up at the cash register as he stared at it, thankfully the other dude came back and speeded things up a bit. I swear it took nearly 10 minutes overall and many, many reminders and corrections to get two quick halves. Utterly crap service. Totally Laughable.
Range is still good, when they are not cleaning the lines out during working hours, which did not impress me I have to say.
Quality was shit; the Roosters Yankee was flat, insipid and lifeless. Didnt have the heart to take it back after the length of time it took originally, so it was time to leave and head to the Airport where the quality of the Greene King World Cup beer and service at Heathrow T1 Wetherspoons was better than here!!
So I re-mark my original from below accordingly. Do I feel bad about marking it down? NO. Yes I know they can do better, but the whole point is that they did not.
Good range for sure, but the White Horse feels like it is resting on its Laurels and seems to employ them along with Hardy behind the bar.
Im in no hurry to come back here, if I will at all, too may better joints in London these days.
Last Visit: Monday 26th June, 2006
** ** ** ** ** ** ** ** ** ** ** ** ** ** ** ** ** ** ** ** ** ** ** ** ** ** ** ** ** ** ** ** ** ** ** ** ** ** ** ** **
LEGENDARY. And that is no understatement. Imposing looking building that was tidied up in 1999 with a sympathetic refurbishment. At the Northern end of Parsons Green (the nearby triangular park area). I had the best Pint of Draught Bass that I have ever had in my 18 years drinking here, as well as many of the special beers from the Bass Museum Brewery. Also sells Highgate Dark Mild on a regular basis. All of the other Handpumps sell a rotating, ever changing, choice of Guest Beers, which are a combination of some of the best beers the UK has to offer plus some newbies from independents - ALL in exceptionally good condition. Very friendly, welcoming atmosphere, I just love lounging around in the leather sofas - it is just like drinking at home. When the weather is nice you can sit outside and watch life in SW6 as it happens, but be prepared to fight for a seat. The high quality of the beverages also extends to the Food. I am unhealthy, and love the big English Fried Breakfast (ah, what the hell?!?), but the other food is wholesome and well made. Service is just superb. Also has a good range of Belgium and UK Bottled Beers plus a small selection from further a field. Frequently holds Beer Festivals, often themed (e.g. Milds, IPA's, etc.). Cask Marque accredited. Make the trip - it's worth it.
Original Scores: 4.5 / 5.0 / 4.5 / 4.5 / 4.5 = 4.65
07-08-2006 07:46:38 | More by TheLongBeachBum
4.8/5 rDev +15.4%
vibe: 5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 5 | selection: 5 | food: 4.5 | $$
Come here. Come here to escape the rush of London in a quieter part of town. Come here to drink with very talkative locals. Come here to drink. A few times during your stay.
After perusing the London pub scene and finding strict adherence to both wrong kinds of tradition -- closing by 11 p.m. (even though the 24-hour laws are now in effect) and heavy dosage of flat lagers (a new-age bar we went to even had a "Beers etc." part on the alcohol menu, including Smirnoff Ice with the beer), this place was a gem. I couldn't be happier with this pub, I don't think. Then again, the buzz from the Belgians could still be wearing off. I feel like I'm wearing a sweater.
Anyway, we hopped on the Tube (District Line toward Wimbledon) and got off at Parson's Green. Took a right out of the stop, and it's just about 200 meters up the road. Walk in, and you're absorbed entirely. It's the right kind of people, too. No British who care about their chances at celebrity -- people here want beer, and they want to talk to you. About anything.
It was crowded around the large U-shaped bar and at the surrounding tables, so it was tough to see the number of taps, but it was about 3-4 dozen, though 13-14 unique beers were featured. The Adnams Broadside Bitter was solid. Then the beer menu came out, thanks to Tony, a San Franciscan who just started working there -- pages of great beers, featuring a bunch of Belgians, from the three Chimay (in 33 or 75 cl) to Duvel to Rochefort to Cantillon to a few Lambics. A small and very excited man recommended a few Lambics while we were both in the bathroom.
But the people make this place. Maybe it was just the night (a couple of blokes who I spent the whole night talking to said it was their second time going there -- also, their second time that night), but the people get excited about beer here! Elsewhere, the British seem to be very hesitant about this movement back toward real ale, settling for the basic and bland lagers. But here, there's genuine passion for learning about and trying beer. Highly recommended, and I'm sorry that I couldn't be a little more critical of this place.
But watch out. The Tube shuts down at 12:30 a.m. -- not something too strange for Bostonians who shout at the T when the final one flies by -- so to avoid a hefty cab fare, be vigilant. And mind the gap.
01-15-2006 09:36:20 | More by Scheity
United Kingdom (England)
4.16/5 rDev 0%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | $$$
Don't know what else to add to the previous reviews of this pub. Simply put, this is a fine pub, but not exactly a "REAL-REAL ALE pub". It has well-selected bottled beers and wines, consistently high quality real ales on draught (with Harvey's Best and Roosters' ales as regulars) served amongst their twelve-strong handpumps (though not always all of them are working), and impressive gastro-pub food menu. But, although that doesn't spoil the overall atmosphere at all, quite often you spot posh clientele going for a bottle of champagne and fine food rather than guarding a pint of decent malt-products at the bar as in lots of REAL-REAL ALE pubs over here. (OK maybe I should stop fussing.)
My latest visit was at their Old Ale Festival (25-6/11/05) and all the beer engines were working along with all taps, serving around 16 different strong ales and winter/X'mas brews on draught and tap at any time (from the totally 60 of them!!), be it English, Scottish, Belgian, German or Dutch, and all beers were in perfect condition and those which were soon sold out were replaced without hesitation. But when the pub was really packed with Real Ale fans from all over the world and got more and more hectic, the pressure gradually wreaked its toll on several young bar staff and their quality of service: under-measured real ales, frowns upon and impatience with customers asking for a reasonable top-ups, things like these happened right before me on at least three occasions. I don't know, as being under such pressure I'm not sure I could keep smiling like a summer sun. But my fellow punters, older CAMRA members murmured about how good their service used to be, etc. I suddenly wished I was older, for the first time in my life, for that matter...
12-02-2005 20:12:18 | More by wl0307
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White Horse, The in London, United Kingdom (England)
92 out of 100 based on 32 user ratings.