The boats unloading at Ballast Quay have long gone and the cobbled streets and terraced cottages, that would once have been at the centre of all the hustle and bustle, are quiet.
After a hard day’s labour or maybe at the end of the week after being paid, the Cutty Sark would have been as popular in 1795 as it is today, drinking behind its large bay Georgian windows and spilling out into the cobbled street late at night.
There has probably been a beer house on the site since the early 18th century, but it changed its name from The Green Man to The Union in 1810 from which time the present building dates. When the Cutty Sark found its final berth on Greenwich Quay, the pub was quick to change its name once again to honour this cherished ship.
It is a Grade II listed building and Neil Rhind has written a very interesting and rather more complete history of the Cutty Sark Tavern than I have room for in this blog. He can be read on the internet at http://www.ballastquay.com/the-cutty-sark-tavern.html.
The Cutty Sark is less than ten minutes from its namesake, moored on its green house, and is well worth those extra few yards especially if you are staying in Greenwich overnight.
The ground floor bar is dark wood panelled, dark wood floor boards, dark brick, low ceilings and low lighting. There are cosy corners, heavy dark tables, easy chairs and part of the ceiling by the bar can be likened to an upturned boat.
It has that feel of what a river pub should be like and whether it is a pastiche or the ‘proper job’ it works and is possibly one of the best stops for that ‘end of walk pint’, especially on a warm day sitting at a bench by the river wall and allowing the rhythm of the water to ease the aching feet.
It is a Young’s pub with Best and Special on offer as well as Sambrook’s Wandle and By The Horns Brewing Company’s Giggle Mug Amber Ale and Stiff Upper Lip IPA to wash down food from the usual Young’s Pub Menu.
The chairs might creak a little, the tables might wobble but I thoroughly enjoyed my pint at The Cutty Sark.
Beer Notes will be published in 2019 as a ‘must have’ accompaniment for the discerning walker on ‘Walking 1066 Harold’s Way’ – The ‘simple’ Cutty Sark will be No 19.
The ‘simple’ Cutty Sark (Pubs of London 1976)
The Cutty Sark is on the route of 1066 Harold’s Way.
Food: Yes Accommodation: No
4-6 Ballast Quay, Greenwich. SE10 9PD Tel: 020 885 83146 www.cuttysarkse10.co.uk