Sitting proud on the tip of Peckham Rye Park, The Rye is a nicely revamped boozer that gives us those countryside-in-summer vibes the moment we walk in. It's perfect for a lazy Sunday with a newspaper, some board games, a roast and, of course, numerous bloody marys to completely numb the senses. It covers everything you could reasonably ask of it: ales on tap; £7 negronis; a food menu straying firmly into gastropub waters; and several Big Screens for the Big Sports. But our favourite thing about this local favourite is the beer garden: a grassy space on a slope full of Peckhamites/affluent East-Dulwichers playing table tennis, pétanque, or just chatting about the realities of South London lyf, surrounded by cigarette smoke and laughter.
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The Clarendon Cocktail Cellar
This building is no stranger to getting boozy. It was once a Victorian pub wining the ladies and gents of the 19th century. Now it is a lavish underground lair below an arty, boutique hotel serving libations inspired by famous artworks. For example, there's the Andy Warhol “Campbell’s Tomato Soup" (basically a very posh Bloody Mary) and the Edvard Munch “Scream” (Mezcal, Lime, Cassis, Agave, Habanero). Keeping things steady are a bevy of small plates inspired by the great British pub - Crispy Pork Belly with Sauerkraut and Apple Sauce and Soft Shell Crab with Kale & Lime Mayo. Definitely a sweet addition to Pimlico's drinking scene.
An ex-mechanics turned Hackney drinking den, Mick's Garage is an offshoot from the crazy popular Crate Brewery. Mixing things up from the tried and tested 'booze-up in a Hackney warehouse' formula, Mick's will also house its own coffee roastery, a Middle Eastern smokehouse and a kombucha bar - if you're not familiar with kombucha, it's a type of miracle working fermented tea which claims to harness properties which are used in the treatment of many illnesses, including cancer. Food goodies include mezze boards, merguez sausages and smoked chicken shwarma.
A proper Hackney institution, The Dolphin is the night-ender. It’s beer sodden, it’s loud and it’s a little bit smelly - only advisable when you're several drinks down and frantically searching for somewhere to go at 1am and looking to get down to 00's R'n'B hits. Don’t come here looking for high grade craft beer or champagne cocktails, but do expect to have a few tales to tell the next morning. If you can remember them. They also do regular karaoke here and have a free jukebox.
The Rose & Crown
The cosiest of cosy pubs, this Stokey boozer is a classic tale - in the same family since 1985, and rebuilt in the early 30s across the street from its original location, it is now a Grade II listed building. That's fitting, because upon entering this wooded drinking den, you're immediately overcome with warm feels, and that's not just 'cos of the open fireplace. Look out for the large beer garden when the sun's a-shinin'.