Marquess Tavern

Bars and pubs, Gastropubs Canonbury
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Marquess Tavern
© Ming Tang-Evans / Time Out

A Canonbury gastropub in a grand old building on Canonbury Street, just down from Essex Road station. Craft beer, cocktails and a solid wine list do brisk business but this place is mostly about the food, with meats from Godfreys up the road in Highbury, seafood from Steve Halt, and fruit and veg from the New Covent Garden market. 

The menu ranges from smoked mackerel pâté, sesame brie wedges with a berry chilli jam and bouillabaisse served with a crusty loaf to sage and rosemary pork t-bones, swordfish steaks, lamb chops and flat iron steaks all cooked on the grill. Desserts include a Marquess mess - big enough to share. 



Venue name: Marquess Tavern
Address: 32 Canonbury St
N1 2TB
Opening hours: Open 5-11pm Mon-Thur; 4pm-midnight Fri; noon-midnight Sat; noon-10.30pm Sun. Lunch served noon-5pm Sat, Sun. Dinner served 6-10pm Mon-Sat; 6-8.30pm Sun
Transport: Tube: Highbury & Islington/Essex Rd rail
Price: Main courses £8.50-£17
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Average User Rating

3 / 5

Rating Breakdown

  • 5 star:4
  • 4 star:1
  • 3 star:0
  • 2 star:1
  • 1 star:4
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A surprising find away from the main streets, there's more on offer than you'd expect. Cosy interior, or garden outback, the food and drinks menu delivers on all fronts. If you're looking for a rowdy night out this won't be for you, but perfect for catching up with a few mates who hates drinking on an empty stomach!

When is a pub not a pub? 

I'd never thought about it until I visited the Marquess Tavern with a 'Ram Pub' badge proudly displayed but I think I know the answer. Not being able to buy a drink at the bar or even drink at the bar will probably just about tip the balance for me. The waiter (not bar staff obviously) was quite charming, if a little feckless and couldn't quite work out what we wanted when we ordered our drinks. "I will put it on your tab" he says. We have no tab. "Shall I open one?". No ta, we just want to pay cash. Takes order. We wait he waits..then asks for payment. We pay. We wait, he waits. "I'll bring them to you in a bit". Err, OK we think and wait a bit. he turns and says but you need to find a table, there's one in the garden. It's OK we will just drink at the bar. "No sorry you can't do that". So we sat in a pub garden and waited to our drinks while he took orders from tables and served food. The drinks eventually came and they were fine. The garden was fine and we even managed to order more drinks without the traditional inconvenience of getting off our fat bums and walk to the bar! All in all a bit weird. I mean, it clearly is a restaurant - not even a bar-restaurant so why call yourself a pub? Note to owner - you can drink at the bar in Michelin restaurants in Paris, so allowing this wild and crazy idea in your establishment will not send it down market in an intsant!

This pub do an excellent Sunday roast. In my experience, a lot of good pubs don't manage to get roasts right, but the Marquess does. Relaxed atmosphere and sensibly priced

Hi, I am the new manager at the Marquess. The pub has changed from tenancy back to being a Young's managed house. We have recently reopened after having a refurbishment. The pub now looks even more fantastic then before. Food is back on in the pub and everything is produced in house rather then hiring out the kitchen as before. The menu consists of the pub classics plus seasonal dishes. We also now open from 11am Monday to Friday and from 10am at the weekend as we serve Brunch. Our website and phone number have both also changed we are at: 02034370630 We hope to see you soon for another review. Thanks Matt

Living locally I frequent the Marquess Tavern quite regularly but of late have observed bizarre goings on with the food. It seems that the kitchen is now being run as a separate entity, 'a little of what you fancy'. Gone is the prix fixe menu and in it's place overpriced and over-gastrofied food. We went to eat recently and not wanting a three course meal really struggled to order anything. Now I have discovered that the chef in his wisdom is no longer serving food during the week - what is that about? This used to be a place you could rely on if you fancied some good food at a reasonable price now you're lucky if you can get food when you want it and it certainly isn't reasonable. A little of what I fancy? Very little indeed.

Lovely place away from the main Islington drag. Went on a week night and had the 3 courses for £15, which is amazing. Menu was short but interesting with something for everyone. Had an awesome pork fritter for starter which went well with the fresh remolade side. Fishcake main course was classic and just as it should be. Wine list was interesting and reasonaby priced. Will certainly be returning next time I'm in London.

Lovely bar, but very disappointed with service and over priced, over fussy food, which was served tepid.

The Marquess seems to have new management. For starters its been spruced up and looks the part. The food has taken an impressive turn. I had the turkey with parsip puree and pancetta, my partner had the steak with salsa verde with chips. Neither of us shared it was to good. One thing that would have been nice was some salad with the steak, its always a hassle not knowing if you are getting it or not and then having to order it retrospectively. For dessert I had the chocolate soup and I believe if it was real it would be exactly how the river of chocolate from Charlie and the Chocolate would have tasted, just wonderful. The staff were great, so welcoming and helpful even though its so busy. There was a great buzz there and it made me really happy.

Ate there the other night, they've done away with the pizza's and are now doing some pretty classy food. I was very impressed with my venison dish.

Is this really the same pub at which I and two friends have just had one of the worst meals in years. Indifferent bordering on rude staff managed to take an hour to serve up overcooked chef's special of 28 day hung beef. It was tasteless and cold and accompanied by disgusting Yorkshire pudding that would cause a riot up north. The roast potatoes seemed to have been deep fried and the broccoli was cooked to buttery. Horrible and expensive.