Hidden away in a little alley off Fleet Street, Ye Olde Cheshire Cheese is the stuff of legend. From getting a bit too close to the Great Fire of London to playing host to some of the world’s greatest minds (Dickens and Dr Johnson were regulars), it will certainly inspire you as you make your way down battered stone stairs into its low-lit alcoves.
Pick from a lengthy list of Sam Smith’s brews (make sure to check the seasonal ales if you’re one for unconventional flavours) or stick to the Cheese’s traditional drink list. If in the mood for authentic pub grub, make your way to the Chop House restaurant. A seat by the fire and a plate of meat pie will transport you back to ye olden days.
These days it’s not so much famed authors rather than tourists and local suits that cram into the Cheese for a tipple. Join them and bring out of towners for a taste of history – just remind them to mind the low beams or they’ll head off with the wrong kind of headache.
Best Bars tip: Front bar looking crowded? Go on and explore, this maze has a bar on each level.
— Gaëlle Laforest, @gaellelaforest