Compton Arms

Bars and pubs Canonbury
3 out of 5 stars
4 out of 5 stars
(2user reviews)
Compton Arms

This quiet, unassuming local is hidden away behind the Union Chapel and thus mercifully isolated from the chaos of Highbury Corner. It’s a cosy place, split between a longish main room (with a TV at one end) and a smaller, squarer space on the other side of the bar.

There’s not much to choose between them, but if you’re planning to order something from the menu of easygoing pub grub, you’re more likely to find a seat in the latter. A chatty bunch of locals gathers here nightly, chewing over Arsenal’s fortunes and bantering with interlopers over pints of ale (up to four on tap). It’s not Islington’s only real pub, of course, but it is one of its best.


Venue name: Compton Arms
Address: 4 Compton Avenue
N1 2XD
Opening hours: Open noon-11pm Mon-Sat; noon-10.30pm Sun. Food served noon-8pm daily
Transport: Tube: Highbury & Islington tube/rail
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Average User Rating

3.5 / 5

Rating Breakdown

  • 5 star:1
  • 4 star:0
  • 3 star:0
  • 2 star:1
  • 1 star:0
1 person listening

This is a great pub, one of the best in Islington. However, what a great shame that I was faced with the old trick. Very recently I ordered a double gin and tonic and quite clearly, right in front of me the bar person poured the bottle of tonic into a glass containing ice and lemon but no gin. Fortunately it was early evening and being fully sober I was able to point this out to the bar person who proceeded to put the gin in the glass, without so much as a by your leave. This was so clearly a pre-meditated act to fleece the customer which is why I am so disappointed that the reputation of a great pub has been sullied. Normally I would give this pub 5 stars but it only gets 2 today because of this incident. I hope that the normally excellent service will be resumed in the future.

This place is by far the best "pub" around these parts. There is no corporate branding anymore - just a genuine old fashioned, real pub, full of proper quality cask ales, decent, good value pub grub and plenty of banter at the bar! There is an Arsenal bias, with match days pretty full of both home and away fans - but it's a trouble free, nice place to watch!