Surrounded by so many high end fashion outlets and exclusive offices, it’s a surprise to find a down to earth crowd in the Kings Head.
This is old London, where the buildings are grand and the shop fronts say Chanel rather than Superdrug. To fit in with the crowd, the Kings Head presents itself with a traditional facade designed from a dark, neutral palette.
Its interior is traditional in terms of the classic pub look but it’s all very smart, with shiny surfaces glowing and a dull floor buffed to a satisfying matt finish. Brass tables, gold framed mirrors and hanging pub-centricities like copper pots further hammer home the traditional appeal of the Kings Head. The position of the bar gives the pub the shape of a cartoon dog’s bone - the walkway is narrow beside it but at either end you’ll find plenty of seating. There is an upstairs dining room that’s open from 12pm plus a Champagne and wine lounge in the cellar below.
Compared to some of the area’s pubs, the Kings Head is a cosmopolitan smorgasbord. The heavy presence of office workers doesn’t appear so heavy here, the chic attire of shop girls and boys is downplayed by the work boot brigade, and even the Champagne and wine lounge below is open to all in a world of appointment only and guest lists. The staff are friendly and easy to pick out and are efficient in their service. Apart from the big screen TVs, the entertainment is largely left down to you, and after work groups on weekdays keep a friendly buzz going.
Simple British dishes form the basis of the menu, although the pies seem to be the kitchen’s tour de force. Chicken and leek, cauliflower cheese and game pies are all made with seasonal ingredients to keep them as fresh as possible. The rest of the menu could be found verbatim in many other pubs, but then things like fish and chips, burgers, and sausage and mash are always popular.
The drinks here are geared towards the beer drinker and despite the lack of too much excitement elsewhere in this after-work special, there is a fine range. Among the ales on tap there is London Pride, Timothy Taylor and Golden Best, with various guests bolstering the selection. Lagers on draught include Fosters, Heineken, Stella, Hoegaarden and Peroni.
The Last Word
The Kings Head is a solid pub, which is what you’d expect from a place under the control of the Nicholsons brewery, and its diverse clientele sets it apart in an otherwise homogenous area.