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Grand Union Kennington (Bar, Restaurant, Club)

Picture of Grand Union Kennington in Lambeth & Elephant & Castle, London

111 Kennington Road, London, Lambeth & Elephant & Castle, London, SE11 6SF
Cuisine: American Average Price: £10
Tel: 020 7582 6685 | Email to Grand Union Kennington | | Transport: Lambeth North | Write review

Grand Union Kennington Review

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Best for: American style levels of service and food satisfaction; lively Friday nights.

Great: eclectic decor that caters to all tastes.

As much as we may ridicule our friends across the Pond - the way they miss the letter U out of our English words, the bonkers opinions uttered by important politicians, and their lack of decent cheese - there are some things that they get right. Customer service, for example. They also know how to do junk food. Just look at Man Vs Food.

You can visit any town in any US state and there will be some diner or restaurant that will proudly boast a pile of meat, (debatable) cheese, deep fried sides, more meat, a load of bread, sauces, more meat, with perhaps a slice of tomato on top - all weighing the same as a newborn baby – as their signature meal. Sometimes the hefty platter of food can look like a rather unappealing mush of brown, beige and yellow but you just know, as if your telly was scratch and sniff/taste, that the concoction is one pleasing, heart slowing moment of deliciousness.

I had all this in my head when I finally met a friend of a friend that hails from Texas for the first time. Coming from the country of large portions, he knows about food, and also how it should be served (with a smile, in case you were wondering). Grand Union Kennington luckily got off to a good start. I had reserved a table and there, behold, was a table with a polite ‘This table is reserved for Ruth’ note.

We went to the bar. In London you expect a disorderly crush on a Friday night, but this was orderly and easy; the manager even smiled! We ordered our food. The breaded mushrooms arrived with a terrific creamy blue cheese sauce, the generous nachos were declared ‘amazing’ by the Brits and the Texan around the table, and the potato wedges were noted for their fiery spicing.

Avocado and bacon burgers swiftly followed, as well as chicken and falafel versions, and were demolished at a speed Adam Richman (as in the ‘man’ who competes against food) would have been proud of. The Texan pointed out a niggle: “The bread is too crumbly. Burger buns shouldn’t be this crumbly.” We considered his sage words, and tossed some more of the tasty Grand Union chips into our mouths. The Texan commented on the “good table service” we were receiving; it wasn’t just us, all the patrons were being attended to by nice, helpful staff.

I had originally suggested we continue the party somewhere else, rather than spend the evening in what I predicted to be a not particularly exciting chain pub in Kennington. But our bellies were full, and we were so comfortable. We had a table, we had a friendly waitress and it was cold and dark outside. If we got hungry again, we knew the food was good. Booze was plentiful and reasonably-priced. And the atmosphere was just right. We could hear ourselves speak - I sound so old when I say that - there was “a bit of hustle and bustle” as one friend remarked; basically it was fun and lively but not too loud or sweaty. To put it yet another way: we did not need to queue for food/booze/loo and the Texan did not need to stand in line.

In fact, you couldn’t not like this pub. Its interior design displayed its wide appeal – for people who like chandeliers, look up and voila. More of an old-fashioned lampshade and big bookshelves kind of guy? Oh look, they’re over there. Flower power more your thing? Observe the flowery statement wallpaper behind the bar. ‘Less is more’ exposed brickwork sort of girl? There’s a patch over there. And if you’re feeling exotic, there are pretty paper umbrellas hanging from the ceiling.

Unfortunately Grand Union Kennington couldn’t achieve the impossible: it could not solve our ‘colour v color’ debate amicably; but its decent pub grub did facilitate our Man v Food discussion - did you see the one where Adam wolfed down a six pound two foot burrito in 90 minutes? - and it did (phew and hooray) prove that Blighty can do food and customer service well.
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Customer Reviews for Grand Union Kennington

Average (based on 5 votes): 5 Atmosphere: Value: Quality:

The following customer reviews are not endorsed by Fluid London and are simply those of users who wish to publish their independent experiences of Grand Union Kennington.

“Great bar. We had a really fun night here. They do a 50% student discount aswell which is amazing. Really great cockatils and not too expensive. Thoroughly recommend!”
Atmosphere: Value: Quality:
Grace, London (6 years 6 months 7 days ago)

“Not a bad shout, agree with the great service, setting and the food was ideal modern pub grub fare - so nice I felt the need to recommend it to the internet. Well stocked bar too.”
Atmosphere: Value: Quality:
Adam Pickering, London (6 years 7 months 10 days ago)

“Great food, absolutely wondering to eat on the terrace on a pleasant summers day. Food quality almost matches Gourmet Grill in Motspur Park, Surrey.”
Atmosphere: Value: Quality:
Michael Lee, London (6 years 8 months 11 days ago)

Show all user reviews for Grand Union Kennington

“Great location and roof garden, but there's only lager and cider on tap. And it's £4 for an average Fosters or Kronenbourg. The burgers don't come with chips, and are smaller than what's on offer elsewhere in Kennington. This pub is a good example of what's wrong with some modern pubs.”
Atmosphere: Value: Quality:
Jonny L, London (8 years 2 months 20 days ago)

“Such a cool roof terrace and amazing burgers. Love it.”
Atmosphere: Value: Quality:
John Simmonds, London (10 years 2 months 25 days ago)

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Food

Gourmet Burgers & Healthy Salads

Updated 12/11/2009

Drinks

Cocktails, fine wines, premium beers

Updated 12/11/2009

Grand Union Kennington Opening Hours

Monday: 12:00pm - 12:00am Friday: 12:00pm - 1:30am
Tuesday: 12:00pm - 12:00am Saturday: 12:00pm - 1:30am
Wednesday: 12:00pm - 12:00am Sunday: 12:00pm - 12:00am
Thursday: 12:00pm - 12:00am    

Additional Information

Special offers, discounts and deals at Grand Union Kennington

2 for 1 Cocktails

Updated 12/11/2009

Events and other great things going on at Grand Union Kennington

Christmas at GU

Updated 12/11/2009

Grand Union Kennington Hire Details

Private hire of all sizes available

Updated 12/11/2009

Name: Bar
Type: Entire Venue
Days: Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday
Cost - Hire Fee: £ 0 / Min Bar Spend: £ 0
Options: Food Available, Seating Available,
DJ: Optional
Capacity: 350
Notes: Stunning roof terrace

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Venue ID: 19770

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Hated

"Extremely RUDE staff Joanna who is GROSS and Uneducated and very unprofessional!! She is jealous of white customers and refuses to serve them. This Rude Joanna is disgraceful and mental!! She is NOT FIT..." Which venue is this?

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