Junction Tavern reopens 1st February

The landmark Kentish Town gastropub is back in biz next month with a new look and menu

We were stopped in our tracks walking down Fortess Road the other day. What on earth has happened to signature boozer The Junction?

Its timeless black gloss exterior has been painted a rather gaudy blue – or ‘varicose violet’, as we overheard one wit call it. Now, now…

A note on the door promises a light refurb, presumably a scrub-up of those exceptional Victorian features and nothing more, although we hope that the effort is focused on the always-slightly-less-appealing conservatory area.

We grabbed manager Ben McDonald to find out what’s going on. “The conservatory has been worked on already, a good general spruce-up,” he says, much to our relief. “The other big thing is that the toilets have been totally gutted, as was long overdue but a big undertaking. They’re being reconfigured with new flooring and tiling in both gents and ladies.”

All pub floors have been sanded back and varnished too, he says, “creating a much lighter feel around the site as a whole.” And it seems every nook and cranny is simply being varnished and painted, with the lovely back bar getting similar treatment and being restyled to incorporate “an extended range of new spirits and wines”.

Still handsome: the Junction. Photo: LBTM

The main thing, Ben underlines, is that they are stay “faithful to the history and Victorian feel of the Junction Tavern, so the improvements will be well received by our local custodians.”

Fair play. And on the food front, new head chef Bruce Miller is working on what he’s calling “an exciting new a la carte menu along with an extended menu of bar snacks”.

See for the results for yourself when it flings open its doors on 1st Feb. And don’t call it violet, OK?

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The Junction reopens 1st Feb at 101 Fortess Road NW5

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