Holly Bush, Hampstead

Our rating: FAP Rating 4 - Click for an explanation of our ratings      User rating: Community Rating 2 - Click for an explanation of our ratings   (5 reviews)
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FancyaPint?'s review...
FAP Rating 4 - Click for an explanation of our ratings
Beauty is a rare and precious thing in this world and it is even rarer and more precious in a public house. The Holly Bush is one of the older pubs in London dating from the time when Hampstead was a country town. Inside this listed building, its stripped wooden interior and slightly ramshackle atmosphere lend it the charming aspect of a Nineteenth Century coaching inn. That said, it can get a little crowded at times (although we have spent many a Saturday afternoon and evening here without suffering unduly) and some of the punters do seem like parodies of Guardian-readers. But there is something deeply fine about this place - maybe the history, maybe the wooden booths and log fire, or maybe the good beers - which engenders wit and conviviality. Since being taken over by Fuller's recently, things have arguably improved. The rather bland renovation in the back room has been vastly improved with better lighting and there are always a fine election of Fuller's beers on, plus some guest ales too. The best pub in Hampstead.
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Reviews (1)
02 Apr 2012
Rating 2 - Click for an explanation of our ratings
Went here for dinner on Saturday night. The food was good (once it eventually arrived), but the service was very, no ridiculously, slow. The staff were friendly enough, but there was no apparent system for taking orders from the various tables and efficiently serving food. We wanted a dessert but after waiting for 15 minutes for our order to be taken, we gave up and asked for the bill. However, the person we asked never came back and the next waitress to approach asked us if we were ready to order! It's a shame because this was one of my favourite pubs in London. It has a lovely old English feel to it and Sussex Harvey's, which is one of my favourite ales. But the service has steadily slipped and Saturday was just more evidence of this. Not a place to vistit if you're in any sort of a rush for food.
Reviews (1)
10 Oct 2010
Not rated yet! - Click for an explanation of our ratings
Visited this pub for the first time since last year and it has gone downhill, I'm afraid. It was a Sunday afternoon and quite busy. Even so it took a long time to get served and the barman was surly. So far so average. But when my friends turned up to meet me they were stopped at the front door and denied entry by a doorman who demanded to know if they had a reservation. Bearing in mind it was 4pm and the pub was thinning out. They had to pretend that we inside had a reserved a table to get in the front door. Last time I checked it was still a 'public house'. Very disappointing. This used to be a nice place, but we won't be going back.
Reviews (3)
22 Dec 2009
Not rated yet! - Click for an explanation of our ratings
I have been going to the Holly Bush for several years and have finally had my fill! It is a lovely looking pub but the food and service has deteriorated since my initial visits considerably.

I went to lunch today and ordered a 13.50 "large plate" roast of organic turkey supposedly with all of the trimmings. When the plate arrived, I was floored - I received two small pieces of turkey with a tiny round of "stuffing" plopped on top, two potatoes, two brussel sprouts and a smattering of a few other vegetables with some cranberry sauce. Over the last few months, my meals there had been more marginal but this latest one made me feel quite ripped off.

But the thing that really made me angry was being kicked out of our table because we had completed our meal (but were still working on our drinks). There were reservation notices on the table top when we arrived at 1:45PM. The reservations specifically said the table was reserved "till 1PM" and the other reservation was at 5:30PM. At around 2:15PM, a rude staff member asked us to leave our table saying it was reserved when clearly it was not! So, not only did I receive a crap meal - I was also booted from my table before finishing my cider!

My times are done at the Holly Bush - beautiful place but everything else has turned crap.
Reviews (9)
12 Sep 2009
Not rated yet! - Click for an explanation of our ratings
Enjoyed the pies and the sausages. Be aware that their sausages are prepared a little differently, have some unusual spices in them, but taste great if you are in the mood for them. Visited this pub after a football match and had a lively discussion with some locals.

Contact details
22 Holly Mount, Hampstead, London, NW3 6SG
020 7435 2892
Opening times
Mon-Sat 12:00-22:00
Sun 12:00-21:00
Please check opening times with the pub before making a special journey.

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