Vauxhall tube station opened on 23 June 1971 when the Victoria Line was extended down to Brixton. The tile motif on the platforms is by George Smith and is a representation of the old Vauxhall pleasure gardens. The tube station doesn’t have any buildings above ground, instead emerging from a number of subway exits.
The tube station is part of a busy transport interchange with the rail station serving the lines out of Waterloo and the bus station with its ski jump roof. This dates from 2004 and is equipped with photovoltaic cells which provide its electricity. The grim gyratory road system surrounding it is due to be completely remodelled by TfL which in turn will lead to sad demise of the bus station, from an architectural perspective anyway!
The Pub: Zeitgeist, 49-51 Black Prince Road, SE11 6AB
The quickest way to reach the pub is to head down South Lambeth Road, turning onto Tyers Street, passing the edge of Vauxhall Pleasure Gardens and the City Farm, continue along here until you reach Black Prince Road. Here in an old Victorian pub building you’ll find Zeitgeist. Don’t be confused by signage that says this is ‘The Jolly Gardeners’, they are one and the same thing.
Now before I start the review, I’ll admit Zeitgeist is one of my favourite haunts. I’ve had birthday drinks here which all ended messily as well as work leaving drinks which almost did! But this pub is definitely here on merit for its uniqueness and I’ll outline why I picked it.
For starters, its a German pub. When I say a German pub, I don’t mean one of those ‘Bavarian Beerhouses’ with all the cliches and mandatory lederhosen for the barstaff. This is a pub staffed by Germans and frequented by Germans. I’ve always thought it’s incredible its ended up setting up shop here, on a side street behind Lambeth Bridge.
Inside its spacious with nice high ceilings and comfy, leather backed seats. It has a very vivid colour scheme with the dark walls complemented by a red ceiling. There are a couple of big projector screens where they show live Bundesliga games and the pub is always busy when these games are on. They also show English Premier League games too. They have a few tables outside on Black Prince Road, as well as a little backyard seating area too.
There are no ales here but they have a fine range of German beers. These include a number of varieties of Krombacher, Konig Pilsner and Paulaner. Pints aren’t cheap at £5 but you get what you pay for as they are cracking beers. The food is also authentically Germanic, with currywurst, schnitzel and the like as well as really German dishes like Schweinshaxe(pork knuckle!).
Zeitgeist is a fantastic pub. If you like German beer or food, you’ll love it here. Even if you aren’t, it’s still a great pub and well worth a visit!