Top 10: July 2009

Our July 2009 selection
The Camel, London
If you like the nearby Florist, but find it getting a little too crowded and noisy for you, then your best bet is to try this pub. Run by the same people, The Camel is a friendly, family affair. The great original external tiling is intact but its been smartened up inside - the framed photos of...
King Charles I, London
A compact, one-roomed affair, this pub even manages to shoehorn in a bar billiards table into the clutter of nicknacks on display. This does provide a pleasing independent air to proceedings, with a decent range of beers on offer - a selection from the tiny Sweet William Brewery in Leyton are...
Masons Arms Hotel, Louth
It's hard to get more central than this pub, located on the market square in the heart of Louth. Having been taken over by new owners in the last few months, it's in the middle of being refurbished, probably losing some of its old charm and joining the 21st Century. While this will annoy some...
Prince of Wales, London
Cleaver Square is situated a beautifully preserved Victorian square which, in Kennington, stands out 'like a tarantula on a slice of angel cake' (thank you, Raymond Chandler). The Prince of Wales lives up to the location too. It's a relaxed Shepherd Neame pub with some good beer (Spitfire,...
The Marble Arch, Manchester
It is in no way a slight on the Marble Arch that we start this review by mentioning the floor. It's the slope to be precise, which slightly unusually follows the gradient of the side street down towards the bar. Patrons who've maybe enjoyed one too many of the raft of excellent ales could easily...
The Hillgate, London
"A decent, friendly local boozer" is how we've very previously summed this one up, but given the pub has recently has a gastro makeover we may have to reword that one. We'll be back round to re-review it as soon as we can.
Cork & Bottle, London
First up, an admission: you can't get a pint here. No Adnam's, no Young's, no Pride - not even a Guinness. Not a pub then, but a wine bar. But what a bar. This place has been setting the standards for wine bars since the early 1970s and the onus of the place is still on quality wines, lovely food...
Nell Gwynne Tavern, London
On the face of things it's Ye Olde Worlde Pubbe, but, the Nell Gwynne is not as touristy as its location and cosy size would make you think. Sure, it's dimly lit and makes the most of its historical associations, but it still has the feel of a locals' pub. Friendly bar staff and decent fare add...
Windsor Castle, London
This is certainly one of the oddest pubs you'll ever drink in and it's a real treat. Once inside, you encounter an Aladdin's cave of royal/celebrity photos (including a shrine to George Best), glass cabinets and generally enough gee-gaws to fill every gift shop in Blackpool, Brighton and...
Carpenters Arms, London
When the Carpenters Arms closed a few years ago, we naturally expected conversion into flats awaited it. So you can imagine our excitement to discover back in the Autumn of 2007 that it had reopened. If nothing else, it's a little piece of East End pub history; many pubs in the area lay claim to...