Pilot Inn, SE10 0BE
- 020 8858 5910
- 68 River Way, SE10 0BE
- 11am-11pm Mon-Sat; 11am-10:30pm Sun
Note: The Pilot closed for refurbishment in late 2013. It's open again now, but we haven't visited since the refurb, so some of the details below may be out of date. See Tired Of London entry for a post-refurb view.
This pub, also simply known as "The Pilot", is an anomaly not far south of North Greenwich Station. It sits at the end of a perfectly-preserved early-19th century terrace comprising about 10 houses, completely surrounded by what is more or less undistinguished emptiness (mainly O2 Centre car parks, as well as the David Beckham Academy, and the very northern reaches of the Millennium Village developments). As such it is almost picturesque in its quaintness for this part of town.
Because it's just that little bit far south of the O2 Centre, it manages to largely avoid the concert-going crowds, but it's certainly worth seeking out.
Inside it serves the usual range of Fuller's ales, with six handpulls dispensing London Pride, ESB, Chiswick and Discovery, as well as a seasonal ale. There is plenty of seating in two carpeted spaces on either side of the bar, with some large booths tucked up against the side wall, as well as more tables for dining up some stairs at the back of the pub. Service is friendly.
Outdoors is an extensive beer garden, with a square lawn in the centre and tables around it, many of them with shelter. There are six or seven picnic-style tables out the front of the pub as well.
According to the Fuller's website as of December 2013, food is served noon-10pm Monday to Saturday, and noon-9pm Sunday. In June 2009, Ewan's mushroom and spinach pasta was pretty tasty, not too oily, with a couple of nicely-toasted slices of garlic bread and a small leafy green salad, and on an earlier visit, the vegetarian burger came in a white bun with some lovely crispy fries and was perfectly good, possibly a little better than the standard. At one end of the bar is a refrigerated cabinet containing an awesome selection of cheeses.
What's best is its cosy atmosphere of a traditional pub, which from looking around is pretty much unique now on the Greenwich Peninsula. The interior is very traditional, with lots of dark wood and an appropriate range of nauticalia.
According to Tired Of London, Tired Of Life, it's dog-friendly.
Accessibility: One step to get in. Toilets are on the same level as the bar, including one marked as accessible.