More Details On The Upcoming “London Pub” At Main & Georgia


by Andrew Morrison | A couple of days ago I made mention of a new pub under construction near my house on the southeast corner of Main and Georgia in Chinatown. There was some speculation as to who was behind the project in the comments so I went by for another recce yesterday evening and found it to be the work of the affable Steve Jennings. He’s a “life-long pub lover” who’s striking out on his own after many years working with Donnelly Hospitality Management (Republic, Library Square, etc).

His room, which should be open to the public by the end of October, will seat 160, including 14 at an L-shaped bar (which will serve nearly a dozen local craft beers on tap). It will being staying open until 3am on the weekends with a kitchen plating bangers and mash, pot pies, and so forth. Nothing fancy. Just pub grub. We had a good debate on the desirable number of television screens. Jennings was thinking 9, while myself and an English construction worker lobbied for as few as 3.  Though I’m a devout Canucks fan who very seldom misses a game, this ain’t the Granville Strip. What my neighbourhood needs is a place of bent elbows and conversation, not a sports bar.

Indeed, what will be particularly interesting to see is the clientele. It’s my belief that the customer base Jennings is used to from his lengthy DHM experience will not be making the trip (it’s too rough). He’ll more than likely have to rely on the residents of Chinatown, Strathcona and Mt. Pleasant to deliver the ducats, and as far as my read of the landscape goes, they ain’t the 9 TV breed of peeps.

I guess we’ll see how it goes.


There are 12 comments

  1. Saw the restaurant’s branded vintage TVR parked out front. Pretty swish. This guy must have some big dollars behind him. I’m a bit worried, though. Look at the crowd the Keefer draws on Saturday nights: Cougars and greasy Hipster pseudo-millionaires — all for $9 beers.

    Hoping the community dictates what happens here, as opposed to over-produced Yaletowners looking for the newest “thing.”

  2. Beautiful closer: “He’ll more than likely have to rely on the residents of Chinatown, Strathcona and Mt. Pleasant to deliver the ducats, and as far as my read of the landscape goes, they ain’t the 9 TV breed of peeps.”

    And spot on: the fewer goggleboxes the better. Real London pubs have projector screens that get pulled down for match-day. The rest of the time, it’s all about the banter.

  3. Liking the 12 local beers on tap (and the space of the place–brickhouse is just too cramped on a weekend), but a little worried that he’s ex-Donnelly (the bane of the Vancouver pub experience, in my opinion). Lets hope he keeps this authentic.

  4. I popped into a Donnely joint a few weeks ago (Lib Square) before a show at the QE. Unfortunately at 8pm on cue, the lights came down and the music came way up, making conversation unbearable, so we left. Until then I thought it was a pretty tollerable place to drink downtown and was totally willing to sacrifice ambiance for the $2.75 pint specials.

    Like Geoffro, I was excited about the Keefer opening in my hood and agree that it’s too bad they settled on trying to bring the granville strip off granville.

    The London? 12 local beers at a nice L shaped bar is too tempting to resist — thank god for my tv-b-gone! (tvbgone dot com).

  5. Another pub with british food? And a sports bar too? This really isn’t something the city needs more of.

  6. i really hope he’s not going after DHM’s customer base. this could be pretty promising, and agreed on the TVs. and it won’t deserve the name the london pub unless he has hand pull cask ale. vancouver is sadly bereft of such wonderful stuff (pretty much the only place i can remember seeing it is the alibi room…)

  7. the man is holding a kokanee. this really should be the end of the whole debate about this pub’s british authenticity… the people behind this project are clueless to anything other than the lcd. trust me. plan to see a dhm replica and i am sure it will be popular with that crowd in a couple of months. chinatown is the new gastown!

  8. I was drinking Kokanee too. You think the Ivanhoe off-sales Leffe and Crannog? When you’re knee deep in construction dust, holding a cold, shitty beer is like holding the Holy Grail. He’s not just smiling for the camera. That face says “Fuck yeah, look what I scored!”

  9. fair enough, but i stand behind everything else… like you said we will wait and see.

  10. Does it have a website yet? I don’t have any problem with 9 tvs. Many london pubs have that many or more. If you want alibi room go there. If you want Library Square go there. I am looking forward to something in the middle.

  11. I hope this is good news. As a Brit what this city REALLY needs is a proper pub, not more of the same “restro/pub in a can”, seen it all before stuff. I hope this guy has actually been to London, knows that we like to go to the bar to buy a drink (even stand and hold our ale, god forbid) and yes, it is all about the banter, the oft lost art of witty conversation and having a good laugh with your mates – not looking over your shoulder at some random sport (although I make exception for the hockey:)) … as a Main Street resident, I am keeping my fingers crossed…. Is it open yet, I can;t find anything to indicate that it is?