Princess Louise on High Holborn has to be the most unique pub I’ve ever come across. The layout has to be seen to be fully comprehended. The front of the pub has 4 doors that lead to 6 or 7 different bar areas, which are actually “booths” surrounded by intricate etched glass and painted tiles. In the middle is a long, island bar that is surrounded by another bar that separates customers from bar-tenders. I’m guessing the separation probably has something to do with social barriers in Victorian London.
The only beer available here is Sam Smith, which many reviews on the web call mediocre, but I call it snooty reviewers dissing inexpensive beer. The £1.99 Old Brewery Bitter is decent, and the £2.41 Sam Smith Stout is fantastic. A light aroma of roasted malts and just a hint of chocolate blended in makes this a supremely drinkable beer.
I got here around 5pm on a Friday evening, perhaps the worst time to visit this pub, since it’s located on the busy High Holborn. The pub was pretty full when I got there and only got fuller by 6:30. If I revisit this pub, it will have to be on an slow afternoon where I can enjoy a few quiet hours tasting beers and enjoying conversations.