9–11 Folgate Street, Spitalfields, London E1 6BX
Set on a quiet street opposite the Dennis Severs’ house, the Water Poet looks, from the outside, like a smart but traditional boozer. Inside, though, is a surprisingly large labyrinth of brightly coloured rooms with leather sofas and gilt mirrors, and a partly canopied terrace with fairy lights, above which rises a mixture of Huguenot houses and glitzy city tower blocks. There’s a theatre downstairs and a pool table, and they serve a broad selection of beers including Belgian beers, Timothy Taylor, Flowers Original, Meantime and Truman's ales, plus a selection of specialty bottled beers. To keep both Shoreditch trendies and city punters entertained, there’s a lively series of events, from the Underground Picturehouse to Pancake Day bashes, comedy and cabaret. One of the best pubs in the area.