North London's Cultural Guide

What’s the best pub in Kentish Town?

We've teamed up with our mates at the Londonist to discover your favourite boozer in the area

Will the Southampton Arms make your list of favourite pubs? Photograph: Stephen Emms
Will the Southampton Arms make your list of favourite pubs? Photograph: Stephen Emms

Each month, popular cultural site the Londonist explores the watering holes of a different part of the capital. And today we’ve teamed up with them to pose one simple question: what’s the best pub in Kentish Town?

The definition of what counts as Kentish Town is up to you. You can of course stray into Tufnell Park, Dartmouth Park, Gospel Oak or Chalk Farm, so long as your choice might reasonably be included on a Kentish Town pub crawl. (By ‘pubs’, we’re using a shorthand — you can also vote for bars.)

So, Pineapple or Southampton? The Grafton or Camden Brewery? Old Eagle or Abbey Tavern? Tapping The Admiral or Fiddler’s Elbow? The Oxford or Lion & Unicorn? O’Reilly’s or Quinn’s? Lord Palmerston or the Star? Aces & Eights or Tufnell Park Tavern? Assembly House or Hoot ‘n’ Annie’s? Bull & Last or the Vine? Junction Tavern or Dartmouth Arms? Torriano or Lord Stanley? Boston Arms or Hideaway? Lord Southampton or the Bluebell? Shebeen or Knowhere Special? Phew. Leave the name of your fave below, or tweet us using the hashtag #bestKTPub.

We’ll tally up the votes across all platforms on Thursday and co-publish the results with the Londonist, who’ll then arrange a pub crawl around the four most popular choices (date to be confirmed). It promises to be nothing short of a riot.


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Oh, and you can nominate more than one place. All nominations count as one vote, whether you rank them or not. Likes on Facebook and retweets of someone else’s vote are also counted as new votes.

So, Kentishtowners: what’s your favourite pub in Kentish Town?


110 thoughts on “What’s the best pub in Kentish Town?”

  1. The Pineapple (for the quiz, the cheese and the gossip), Camden Brewery Bar (for the beer) and The George IV (purely for the Ivy outside and smell of deep fries food inside).

  2. Quinn’s – it’s quirky and old school in a good way, not shiny and bland like many pubs/bars nearby. Vince has to be one of the best, and most easy going pub managers in London! Also have to nominate Tapping The Admiral – A great real ale pub with a very relaxed ambience. It’s an oasis in the middle of an estate!

  3. 1) the Junction
    2) the Pineapple
    3) the Abbey
    4) the Grafton

    Plus Quinn’s, Boston Arms and the Old Oak for being the only authentic Irish/ cockney pubs left in the area (as well as that one next to McDonald’s!)

  4. Lion & Unicorn. Great beer & amazing service. Lord Palmerston, what’s not too like with their great new team. The Torriano, just because it’s there.

  5. the reason pubs are so much better than cocktail bars is that different pubs suit different times and needs so if you are lucky to have the choice – and we have – you can pick the one that suits mood/need/weather; its horses for courses. So, pubs with gardens, pubs with interesting food (sorry, Thai doesn’t work and unless things have changed again,Tapping the Admiral had sacked their pie maker for bad timekeeping), good range of drinks and minimal numbers of hipsters stroking their inordinately long beards. So for pure surreal enjoyment, it has to be the Southampton Arms, though on a sunny afternoon, I’ll skive in the Junction’s garden (if its open!). Dick M.

  6. Two surprises in all these nominations… 1, I have clearly been missing out on Aces & Eights 2, I bet the guys at The Grafton are disappointed at the lack of love. Most areas would to have a pub like that, but I guess we are lucky to have so many great places to drink.

    My favourite? The Tufnell Park Tavern… haha not really… got to keep it local and say The Pineapple.

  7. Tapping the Admiral, Grafton, Pineapple, Southampton Arms, Abbey Tav all for different reasons.

    Seems harsh not to include Camden Brewery, Lion and Unicorn and The Junction though..

    Basically nearly everywhere is good!

  8. The Southampton And Tapping The Admiral (with The Pineapple and Aces connecting them in a dream NW5 pub crawl). Though if you’re more middle class or want to bring a couple of screaming kids, head to The Lion & Unicorn or The Junction. More druggy and care less about service – there’s The Abbey (though as with Southampton and Aces, excellent food).

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110 thoughts on “What’s the best pub in Kentish Town?”

  1. The Pineapple (for the quiz, the cheese and the gossip), Camden Brewery Bar (for the beer) and The George IV (purely for the Ivy outside and smell of deep fries food inside).

  2. Quinn’s – it’s quirky and old school in a good way, not shiny and bland like many pubs/bars nearby. Vince has to be one of the best, and most easy going pub managers in London! Also have to nominate Tapping The Admiral – A great real ale pub with a very relaxed ambience. It’s an oasis in the middle of an estate!

  3. 1) the Junction
    2) the Pineapple
    3) the Abbey
    4) the Grafton

    Plus Quinn’s, Boston Arms and the Old Oak for being the only authentic Irish/ cockney pubs left in the area (as well as that one next to McDonald’s!)

  4. Lion & Unicorn. Great beer & amazing service. Lord Palmerston, what’s not too like with their great new team. The Torriano, just because it’s there.

  5. the reason pubs are so much better than cocktail bars is that different pubs suit different times and needs so if you are lucky to have the choice – and we have – you can pick the one that suits mood/need/weather; its horses for courses. So, pubs with gardens, pubs with interesting food (sorry, Thai doesn’t work and unless things have changed again,Tapping the Admiral had sacked their pie maker for bad timekeeping), good range of drinks and minimal numbers of hipsters stroking their inordinately long beards. So for pure surreal enjoyment, it has to be the Southampton Arms, though on a sunny afternoon, I’ll skive in the Junction’s garden (if its open!). Dick M.

  6. Two surprises in all these nominations… 1, I have clearly been missing out on Aces & Eights 2, I bet the guys at The Grafton are disappointed at the lack of love. Most areas would to have a pub like that, but I guess we are lucky to have so many great places to drink.

    My favourite? The Tufnell Park Tavern… haha not really… got to keep it local and say The Pineapple.

  7. Tapping the Admiral, Grafton, Pineapple, Southampton Arms, Abbey Tav all for different reasons.

    Seems harsh not to include Camden Brewery, Lion and Unicorn and The Junction though..

    Basically nearly everywhere is good!

  8. The Southampton And Tapping The Admiral (with The Pineapple and Aces connecting them in a dream NW5 pub crawl). Though if you’re more middle class or want to bring a couple of screaming kids, head to The Lion & Unicorn or The Junction. More druggy and care less about service – there’s The Abbey (though as with Southampton and Aces, excellent food).

Leave a Comment

About Kentishtowner

The award-winning print and online title Kentishtowner was founded in 2010 and is part of London Belongs To Me, a citywide network of travel guides for locals. For more info on what we write about and why, see our About section.