Old Queen's Head

Nightlife, Bars Islington
  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • 4 out of 5 stars
(16user reviews)
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Old Queen's Head
© Matt Cheetham

The latest addition to Essex Road's burgeoning bar scene was a popular, flamboyantly historic, big corner pub that was ripe for a revamp. Step forward Steve Blonde and the Medicine Bar's Rob Wheeler and the place works a treat; they're going large on 'proper drinks', fine food and lotsa leather sofas to kick back in.

A dozen cocktails are also offered – nothing too complicated or sophisticated, but nice enough – as well as around ten wines at fair prices. The food is pretty manly (burgers, steak baguettes and so on), but otherwise it’s a good cosmopolitan mix, with the crowd on any given night split roughly 50-50 between girls and boys.

On weekend nights, everyone spills outside. Entertainment is generally of the up-for-it DJ variety (think of it as a spruced-up, expanded Social), though there’s also a fine folk series staged in the comfortable upstairs room.

Posted:

Venue name: Old Queen's Head
Contact:
Address: 44
Essex Road
Islington
London
N1 8LN
Transport: Tube: Angel/Highbury & Islington; Rail: Essex Road
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Average User Rating

4.1 / 5

Rating Breakdown

  • 5 star:7
  • 4 star:5
  • 3 star:3
  • 2 star:1
  • 1 star:0
LiveReviews|16
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Avatar for Photosbysooz
Tastemaker

I used to come him quite regularly and hadn't been for a while. On a busy bank holiday weekend it turned out to be a great choice for a lively, friendly pub. I was pleasantly surprised at how nice all the staff were including the security on the door. Even the loos were in great condition, with a staff member popping in to check everything was properly stocked, which makes a change for a London pub.

Drinks were 'normal' and I didn't sample anything else (except crisps!) so can't comment on the menu. But it was a good vibe, nice happy crowd, comfortable seating and music at a level that meant I could hear my companion speak. Oh and there was a bit of a party scene upstairs with a DJ that was good to blow off a few cobwebs...

Avatar for Neil H
tastemaker

I visited The Old Queen's Head for the first time recently to see The Correspondents perform live on Good Friday in the upstairs bar (only £6 - bargain!). Very similar in styling  to 'Paradise by Way of Kensal Green' bar (part of the same pub company), this pub has some retro / vintage interiors, plus a small outside area and a karaoke room on the third floor.  A good place to see a live band in an 'intimate' setting (although best to get a drink downstairs first, as there is a smaller selection of drinks available upstairs e.g. no draft beer).

Avatar for mcuttle
Tastemaker

What's great about this pub is it caters for any mood you're in really. You can chill downstairs and grab one of their tasty burgers in the week, or at weekends it does get busy but if you can grab a seat, you can still have some space to socialise. Upstairs is a different story with a large function room that also gets super rammed at the weekend. Book early if you want a booth. With plenty of haze and lights it becomes a proper bump and grind joint and there is barely room to hold a drink! The bar staff are friendly and welcoming, it's a shame that upstairs has nothing on draft but the drinks are reasonably priced. Fancy some karaoke? they even have a private room in the loft if you want to book it for a party or work gathering.

Avatar for Milly E
tastemaker

One of my favourite pubs in London for three reasons 

1) excellent food always. At the moment they have a burger pop up in there which is just delicious

2) nice cosy interior that feels almost like you could be in a country pub rather than in the heart of Islington. Plus its big so you don't have to find a spot between someones armpit and another persons chin.

3) It has a dancefloor upstairs that plays music I actually want to dance to rather than the monotonous drone of house music. 


It's brill :) 

Avatar for Georgie
Tastemaker

I went here at the weekend to celebrate a friend's birthday and absolutely loved it. The main downstairs room is beautiful - dark wood, stags heads on the wall, a feeling of traditional country pub with the elegance of trendy cocktail bar. The drinks are priced quite reasonably - a large glass of wine is about £5/6, a cocktail around £8 and there's plenty of food available if you fancy it. it was rammed - clearly everyone in Angel knows this is a good place to head on a Saturday night, and my friend wasn't the only one that chose this place to celebrate their birthday as there were several parties going on. What elevates this from just an average pub is the dance floor upstairs which plays good tunes until close at around 2am so there's something for everyone whether you want a night chatting or a night dancing.

Avatar for Chris
Tastemaker

Went for Sunday lunch which was nice but not spectacular. Only got a single roast potato, cut in half, although we were given another portion when we mentioned it. Plates were whisked away as each person finished, which was a tad awkward. 

Avatar for Yasmin B
tastemaker

Brilliant venue! The perfect place for a fun night out! They throw really good nights,especially 'Pour it up' which is 90s and 00s RnB and HipHop. Great music and a fun, unpretentious crowd. It's only about a 7 min walk from Angel tube station. Has a lovely bar/ pub downstairs and a fun club room upstairs. Highly recommended. 

Avatar for Amy L
Tastemaker

A club room above a pub in Angel with top class DJs that's open until the early hours of the morning? Hosting well known DJs such as Stanton Warriors, Plump DJs, and Krafty Kuts, this is more than just a local pub with good tunes. The major disappointment we had, however, was that the bouncers on the night did not deal with a dispute between my friend and another guest in a satisfactory manner. And the fact that one bouncer called my friend a "feminist" who "probably gets her drink spiked every weekend" was totally unprofessional and left a sour taste in our mouths. Will we be back? Likely not. Which is a shame, because this is a pub with great potential. But you need to treat your guests with more respect than that.

Avatar for Stevie F

Really lovely place full of really lovely people. I come here for night's out and for chilled Sunday sessions and everyone's always so bloody friendly I feel like it's my living room. Bar staff are chatty, interesting and skilled and clearly love being there. The decoration is pleasant and comfortable. Quality sound and good fun when DJs are in, and upstairs on a Sunday is my favourite way to Sunday. Delicious roasts, delicious cocktails, delicious music and a delicious atmosphere x

Avatar for The Man on the Street

What a great pub ! Went to see Jerry Williams in the music room upstairs. Arrived early and got chatting to locals at the main bar downstairs. Then a sign lit up in a mirror to say "upstairs open". And boy was it open. Absolutely packed and a line up of 5 bands in one night. Jerry was first up and was just awesome. So, great pub and great music - what's not to like ? 

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Avatar for JR

When there for my birthday party for some Karaoke which was great fun. Communication in the lead up to the party was great, on the night, not so much. We got there and were told that the call button for drinks wasn't working so they would come up and see us every 15 mins or so--which was more like 45 mins (and we were there for 2 hrs). My very pregnant friend ordered a diet coke and it never came so I had to ask the barman on the 2nd floor for it (he was great, thank you), the aircon wasn't working so it go really hot and stuffy in there. I was told there was an issue with paying for drinks, but this wasn't brought to my attention until after. All in all it was ok, but really hope they sort things out!

Avatar for Ella

We celebrated my partner's birthday in the Old Queens Head pub in Angel and it was a great fun! The organization of the event was perfect and drinks/food were served when requested. The atmosphere was excellent and all my friend had a great night out. We started the night downstarirs and went upstairs to the party around 9.30pm. It felt that the DJ playing upstairs was warming up and starting playing really good stuff at around 10.30. Will defenitly recommend The Old Queens Head for a great night out!

Avatar for Lauren M

The Old Queens Head is an amazing pub in islington! Saw Dj derek there a few fridays ago and it was awesome, it was busy but u didnt have to wait an age at the bar, Dj derek didnt dissapoint either! They pull in some pretty big names from what ive seen, will definintely be coming back, gutted i missed man like me a few weeks back though!. Check it out peeps!

Avatar for Holly J

Me and all my friends had an amazing time when we came here last week. Great DJ and the floor was surprisingly packed for a pub. Amazing cocktails for pretty good prices and a wide range of them at that. I've been to the legendary pub quiz before as well and it certainly didn't disappoint.

Avatar for Katerina

I have just spent an amazing Friday night here. We had an area booked in the upstairs bar followed by a session in the Karaoke room. I didn't know that The Queens had a karaoke room, but it's hilarious. You get free entry to the pub and there is plenty of fancy dress to get involved with. Top night out - and we are going to try the quiz here soon too. I have heard big things on the grape vine - so looking forward to checking it out.

Avatar for alex

Ordinary pub benefiting from decent location, Major problem - this place runs a scam advertising entry on Saturday until 4am and then closes at 2am - bar actually accepts drinks rounds 30 secs before DJ's summons (ours was £70 in total, hence my fury). Girl front of house basically lies bluntly. Bar manager protested innocence, bar staff hurled abuse. The door staff were oddly apologetic, which betrays the truth... In summary, go anywhere but here. A pity what with the location.