There appear to be no Good Beer Guide pubs in Cheshunt, so my first port of call instead was The King James. It’s an interesting location as part of a shopping arcade, being relatively small inside for a Wetherspoons. CAMRA note that “the pub takes its name from King James I, whose royal place – Theobalds – stood about 1.2km away”. I’m not sure when it opened, but it was around 2000, so not one of the earlier pubs operated by the company.
There were no dark beers available, although the member of bar staff recommended this winter ale, which is Rosey Nosey from Batemans. It was well kept and at the appropriate temperature, but no real depth of flavour or interesting taste. I’d struggle to complain about the price though, as with my 50p off CAMRA voucher, a pint cost the grand total of £1.49. And when having a sample of the beer the member of bar staff also poured the best part of a third of a pint, so extra value was provided there…..It was entirely drinkable though.
My usual go-to meal of southern fried chicken wrap and chips, costing the grand total of £4.69 including unlimited coffee. Pretty decent quality as well, the chips had some firmness to them, the chicken wrap was evenly filled and everything tasted as it should have done. Although I’ve never seen a coffee machine in Wetherspoons so rarely used, I only saw a couple of customers use it in the over two hours that I was in the pub. Anyway, everything was clean, the pub was organised and there was a relaxed feel to the location.
“To the staff who work there…you could not cut it, in a normal pub..sooner The James closes, the better. You arent up to JDW standards.”
The above punter seemed displeased, although I thought that the staff were performing well as they smiled, made eye contact and seemed genuinely helpful. There are a fair few reviews complaining about other customers, but everyone seemed entirely well behaved to me.
All in all, perfectly acceptable.