The Barrow Boy and Banker Pub

Yesterday we had an appointment to get our shots and medicine for our upcoming trip to Malaysia. This is one of my least favorite parts of travel. I hate shots. I hate needles. When we lived in Boston I worked near a hospital, which made it super convenient to hop over on my lunch break and get it over with. The bad part was I had to go alone. Yesterday The Better Half was there for moral support. Well it turns out The Better Half is the best lucky charm ever. I found out I only needed to take medicine. No shots!

028 I was in such a good mood I took The Better Half to lunch. And you guessed it, I opted for a pub. The Barrow Boy & Banker pub is located on Borough High Street right next to the Borough Market. This pub derives its name from this proximity to the market since the barrow boys used to carry out their trade there. More than likely they sold the same type of goods that are sold now in the market. The building used to be the first branch of the National Westminster Bank. Beneath the bar, the bank vaults still exist and that’s where they store and condition all of their beer.

It was right before noon when we stepped inside. Fortunately the kitchen was opening in ten minutes. This allowed us some time to have a beer and look around the pub. There’s much to see.034 025 024

Both of us opted to have Front Row, a Fuller’s beer. This seasonal pale ale is brewed to 0293.7% abv and will be available through March. It was my first time having it and I was delighted with the taste. According to Fuller’s website, this beer is perfect for rugby matches. Not sure how, but I won’t argue. And there’s rugby on this weekend … Oh, back to the pub review. The cask ales at Barrow Boy are brewed less than nine miles away at Fuller’s in Chiswick. Fuller’s is the last surviving traditional family brewery in London.

036I’m a sucker for sausage and mash so that’s what I ordered for lunch. This pub is known for their pies so The Better Half tried their chicken pie. I have to admit I ordered the wrong thing. My meal was fine. The Better Half’s was great. Next time I’ll go for one of their pies. Teaches me not to stick to the same meal all of the time.

Since we were there on an Thursday 035afternoon there wasn’t much of a crowd. I did notice that they had some large TVs and from what I hear it’s a great place to watch sports. Overall I was super impressed by the atmosphere of the pub. It’s huge and fun. My meal let me down some. However, the beer was yummy. I give this pub 4 out of 5 stars. And if I go back, I’m ordering a pie.

About TBM

TB Markinson is an American who's recently returned to the US after a seven-year stint in the UK and Ireland. When she isn't writing, she's traveling the world, watching sports on the telly, visiting pubs in New England, or reading. Not necessarily in that order. Her novels have hit Amazon bestseller lists for lesbian fiction and lesbian romance. She cohosts the Lesbians Who Write Podcast ( with Clare Lydon. TB also runs I Heart Lesfic (, a place for authors and fans of lesfic to come together to celebrate lesbian fiction.
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15 Responses to The Barrow Boy and Banker Pub

  1. A savory pie is hard to beat! I’m thinking you need to head back over there and try one so we can enjoy it vicariously!

  2. Interesting! Love to read your daily updates.

  3. niasunset says:

    I am glad the hospital went fine… This place seems so beautiful I loved the decoration and the colours… Thank you dear TBM, I am excited too as if I am going to travel 🙂 Good Luck. Love, nia

  4. nrlymrtl says:

    What kind of bread topping is that on the pie? It is huge! You could probably only fit half as many pies in the oven if they all puff up that way, otherwise they would stick together and create a mess trying to get them out.

  5. Lucid Gypsy says:

    Um I’m not so sure about those pies, every pub has those these days, pots of filling with a layer of frozen pastry dumped on top! Does it really qualify as pie? 🙂 glad the other half enjoyed it though.

    • TBM says:

      Usually I’m not a fan of these types of pie. I prefer cherry, blueberry, pecan–you get the idea. But I have to admit this one was pretty good. I wouldn’t order it all the time though–what a gut stuffer.

  6. Fergiemoto says:

    Sounds like a good way to celebrate not having to endure shots! Sorry to hear your meal wasn’t that great, but hopefully the beer was a good consolation.

  7. petit4chocolatier says:

    Everything about this pub looks wonderful! Love that staircase 🙂

  8. i’m envious. of the atmosphere and of the food!

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