London – Westminster (Borough of) – The Cambridge Pub

I got an e-mail from Nicholson’s pubs last week that said they had half-price main courses available on most weekdays over the next couple of weeks. That seemed like a very reasonable deal, so I thought that I’d pop to some of their London establishments that I haven’t been to before.

This is the Cambridge pub in Charing Cross, which is in the area of Soho. Nicely decorated ceiling and it’s also got an upstairs dining area. The pub says about its history:

“Deep in London’s theatre district, The Cambridge is popular with audiences and actors alike. Built in 1887 on the site of The King’s Arms, it is next to the Palace Theatre, formerly the Royal English Opera House. The Cambridge lies in the heart of Soho, a royal hunting ground in the days of Henry VIII. We bet you didn’t know that Soho takes its name from a hunting call.”

The pub’s location (the PH just above the CAM of Cambridge Circus) on a map from the early twentieth century, an arrangement named after the Duke of Cambridge.

The beer choice is quite limited here, or at least for my decadent needs, so I sufficed with half a pint of London Pride. It was well-kept, at the appropriate temperature and tasted as it should, that’s about all I can say.

The fish and chips, which looked a smaller portion that it actually was, I think because of their plate of choice. Anyway, this was actually very good, the fish flaked away and was of a decent quality, with the batter having some flavour to it. The batter wasn’t greasy, the chips were fluffy inside and the mushy peas had an air of sophistication to them although they were a tad cold. And lots of tartare sauce, I liked that.

Service in the pub was friendly and engaging, with the member of bar staff being warm and conversational. The pub was clean and comfortable, as well as being surprisingly busy. I can imagine how busy this pub must get when things are a little more normal in the country and the nearby theatres are packed. The reviews are generally very positive and the management responses on TripAdvisor to the negative ones are some of the longest and most comprehensive that I’ve seen. They’re actually very professional responses, it made me like the venue even more as I imagine they’d resolve any actual problems if they occurred.

The whole cost of this decadent lunch was £10, which I thought was reasonable as it’s the same as the nearest Wetherspoons and it’s good to visit somewhere different. I’d rather Nicholson’s work on its beer options, but the venue seemed very well managed and so I haven’t got any complaints beyond the lack of decent and perhaps even innovative beers. Certainly not a bad lunch option, although the pricing is a little rich for me when there aren’t offers on.