This area was once famed for its pub — indeed, Elephant and Castle is named after a pub, which existed here for centuries. Its last incarnation was a workaday locals' boozer with a Thai kitchen and DJ nights. Now, the site has been taken on by the Antic chain, bringing fresh life to the area's drinking scene. It very nearly became an estate agents.
The interior will be familiar to adherents of the chain. Salvaged furniture from long-forgotten decades is brought back to life, while the walls are covered in mismatched paint, wallpaper and — for some reason — 1960s shoes. Outside, the small beer garden offers close-up views of Erno Goldfinger's Metro Central Heights. The picnic tables have been painted a repulsive shade of brown-green, last seen in our infant's nappy. Why?
Fortunately, everything else about the place is spot on. Five hand pumps offer two flavours of the chain's house beer of Volden (from Croydon), and three rarer tipples. There's a minimal wine list and a selection of ciders to try. The Elephant currently lacks a kitchen, but offers regular street food from the beer garden.
On Twitter as @Elephancastle
Last updated September 2017