Long, lazy Sunday lunches beside log fires make for memorable winter dates, and London is full of super chilled taverns that were made for lounging in.
We’ve cozied on up to North, South, East and West London to bring you some of our favourite drinking holes for snuggling up in this Christmas…
The Spaniards Inn, Hampstead
A stomp around Hampstead Heath is worth the frostbite and muddy shoes if it ends in a fireside glass of something lovely in The Spaniards Inn. Dating from 1585, this North London institution has history – as well as cosy charm – in coal bucket loads. Immortalised in Dickens’ The Pickwick Papers, the literary connections don’t end there – the original bar is where Keats supposedly penned Ode To A Nightingale (over a claret, one imagines). Spaniards Road, Hampstead, NW3 7JJ (map).
The Gun, Docklands
Complete with a pop-up ski lodge for winter 2014/15, this Docklands pub is a master class in old world charm meets the glamour of riverside London. Snuggle up next to one of the many fires you’ll find in the nooks and crannies, or brave the cold on the waterside terrace offering views of Canary Wharf. Either way, there’s comfort food aplenty on the menu and walls of gaze-worthy memorabilia nodding to the pub’s historic past – The Gun is located next to the site of the home of Admiral Nelson. 27 Coldharbour, Docklands, E14 9NS (map).
The Antelope, Tooting
Quirky and cosy in equal measures, this South London drinking hole and gastro pub boasts both fabulous open spaces for local-watching and cosy corners for hiding in. The weekly quiz and comedy nights are popular draws, as is the beer selection and seasonal menu. ‘Trendy but laid back’ is the general consensus among Trip Advisor reviewers of The Antelope. There’s also praise for the menu’s value for money. 76 Mitcham Road, SW17 9NG (map).
The Union Tavern, Westbourne Park
This popular West London pub’s canal side terrace is busy all year round, but if you want to hibernate from the elements, there are plenty of easy chairs and sofas to curl up on inside. The Union Tavern prides itself on its selection of rare real ales and holds regular tasting sessions. Make an evening of it every Wednesday with £5 burgers from 5pm followed by a pub quiz from 8pm. 45 Woodfield Road, W9 2BA (map).
Main image: Facebook.com/thegun.e14