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The Queens Head & Artichoke, Regents Park, NW1

32 Albany Street
Phone: 02079166206

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Tris C left this review about The Queens Head & Artichoke

This is a street where pubs of late have been dropping like flies, many having gone since the 1960s but of late: The Prince George of Cumberland (2005), The Chester Arms (2009), Cape of Good Hope (2014) and now The Victory (2016), so this is all that's left. Rebuilt in 1900 and clad with terracotta tiles, this is an attractive corner pub with three-quarter height dimpled windows which allude to its former Courage past along with some fine Courage lettering to the top of the bar back. An attractive interior with three-quarter height wood panelling, bare boards and basic old school furniture. There are sconce lights, and some basic hanging lights which could possibly be original - basically, I think that this pub has a decent unspoilt interior. Indeed there is an enormous flowerpot on the bar, but this is not the gastropub as highlighted below. Tables are *not* laid for dining and menus are not in evidence. A few people were eating to the side, but it would seem that food is mainly confined to the restaurant floor above with some food advertised on blackboards and not of the aforementioned tapas bent.
I didn't notice any music and certainly no sport TVs to ruin the ambience - at the height of Euro 2016 - which is a definite plus, though the foul-mouthed Australians at the next table were a pain in the bum. Otherwise, most clients seemed to be drawn from the office development to the east and hotel guests to the south.
Ales: Sharp's Doom Bar, Whitstable Bay's East India Pale Ale and Black Sheep Brewery's Best Bitter at a surprising £3.65 a pint and good to boot. There were two other pumps, one vacant and the other missing, displaying a hole where it once stood.
This is a surprisingly good pub which exceeded all expectations and is a far cry from the awful tourists'/transients' Green Man about 200 yards to the south. Worth seeking out if in the area, but not worth a detour.

On 14th June 2016 - rating: 6
[User has posted 998 recommendations about 983 pubs]

Please Note: This review is over a year old.

Rex Rattus left this review about The Queens Head & Artichoke

They had five ales on in here when I visited at Thursday lunchtime – GKIPA, Doom Bar, Cornish Coaster (£3.50 a pint), Timothy Taylor Landlord and Adnam’s Southwold Bitter. The main food available here is tapas, mainly at around £4 - £5 a dish, but with main courses (no pub grub) at around £10 - £12.

This is a gastropub, with the emphasis firmly on the gastro rather than the pub. In the main room downstairs almost all of the tables and chairs are laid for diners, with just a couple of sofas and a normal table with chairs on the left not laid up, presumably for those who just want a drink. There’s another dining room upstairs, but I didn’t feel the urge to investigate it. The main room is rather nice though, with its tall lattice framed windows; fielded wood panelling on the walls; the old bar back still with some “Courage” signage on it; and the delightful tiled surround fireplace on the left with a glass display case above it containing what look like antique icons in it. The gastro credentials are reinforced by the enormous flowerpot, containing a succulent of some kind, on the bar counter.

Even though there were only about a dozen people in there it was very noisy because the furnishings in the restaurant area didn’t include upholstery, and of course with the floor being bare-boarded all the sounds reverberated around the place. But the tapas we had were very good, and the pint of Cornish Coaster at £3.50 was reasonably priced. This is essentially somewhere to come for a meal rather than for a drink I guess. But it’s a good enough representative of its breed. A number of gastropubs do decent real ale, and good luck to them I say.

On 15th July 2014 - rating: 6
[User has posted 2577 recommendations about 2495 pubs]

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Steve C left this review about The Queens Head & Artichoke

Form the outside the Queens Head and Artichoke looks like a traditional boozer with some awning covered picnic tables on the path out front. Alarm bells start ringing when all of the restaurant guide stickers, Michelin, timeout etc., are seen on the door. There is an advertised restaurant upstairs and in the L shaped bar area there were a couple of dining pensioners and some ladies who lunch. The bar is stocked with premium draught products alongside Carlsberg, Guinness and five hand pumps that were drawing Adnams Southwold Bitter, Pedigree, Landlord, Doom Bar and Cornish Coaster. I didn’t see the main food menu, but there was an extensive tapas menu on the bar for the lunchtime crowd. There is no TV, but there was some eastern jazz (for want of a better description) playing in the background.

My half of Landlord was well poured, but this place is a bit ‘gastro’ for my liking so I do not plan to return.

On 31st January 2012 - rating: 5
[User has posted 3586 recommendations about 3565 pubs]

Please Note: This review is over a year old.

Just a quick pint, then I'm off left this review about The Queens Head & Artichoke

Interesting-looking building, particularly the curious 'tower' feature on the corner. Inside, it is a fairly anonymous 'Plat du Jour' gastro-pub; crowded 'L'-shaped layout, with numerous reserved but empty tables. Some rather loud, thoughtless and generally annoying groups were making things difficult for everybody else. Plenty of staff, but mostly doing bar and kitchen chores and only one serving. Four of the five handpumps were on, offering Pedigree, Broadside, Doom Bar and Cornish Coaster (£3.30, but served rather too warm). Perhaps I caught it on a bad day, but I drank up and left pretty quickly.

On 13th August 2011 - rating: 5
[User has posted 6199 recommendations about 6199 pubs]

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Steve of N21 left this review about The Queens Head & Artichoke

Well, one year later and in the act of fairness, we visited again after this years annual games bash in Regents Park.
Sorry, but couldn't see any changes from our last visit.
And actually made worse by the previous posters teasing about Sharps beers being available. Only two hand pumps going for us dispensing very average Pedigree and Adnams.
And once again, despite loads of branded staff, not many actually involved in serving and none focussed on clearing up.
Perhaps this place is very pleasant early on, e.g. when there is no customers, because they certainly struggle when there is.
Still a poor pub for me. .

On 29th July 2011 - rating: 3
[User has posted 1712 recommendations about 1661 pubs]

Please Note: This review is over a year old.

I L left this review about The Queens Head & Artichoke

We have been in here a few time due to working nearby recently, and yes it's a gastronomic pub with al the modern attributes, in a half timber panelled pub inside. However it does have 5 ales on hand pump, two being from Sharps and the Cornish Coaster has Been good on each visit. Very pleasant early on but does tend to get packed out with groups of the trend-set and therefore service can getting a bit slow at these times.

On 3rd June 2011 - rating: 7
[User has posted 287 recommendations about 284 pubs]

Please Note: This review is over a year old.

Steve of N21 left this review about The Queens Head & Artichoke

On emerging from the nearby Regents Park we were looking for a decent pub and the Queens Head looked like it would fit this bill as it looked like a good pub from the outside and there was a fair crowd on the pavement on this warm evening.
Unfortunately what we didn’t realise was that this place is actually a Gastro Pub and it was clear from our visit where its focus is. .
On entering, of three hand pumps on the bar only the Pedigree was on and the Adnams and TT Landlord had gone. And , despite there being five staff dressed in the black pub uniform, only one seemed to be involved in serving people in the downstairs bar and the others seemed to be all concentrating on the restaurant upstairs.
And then that one persons inability to recognise who was next to be served of the throng waiting at the bar was only matched by their inability to pull a full pint, and virtually every opint we were presented with had to be topped up.
Despite this we decided to stay for a few rounds, but even this was almost thwarted by them running out of glasses because no one was bothering to collect the empties now covering every table surface.
Internally the décor of the downstairs bar is the usual clean plain wooden décor that Gastro pubs go for which may be nice when your sitting eating, but fairly sole less when you standing around having a few pints.
Now this may be a foody heaven and the upstairs restaurant may be the best thing this far north of The Ivy. But as a pub serving beer, it was a poor experience and I can’t see myself ever coming back here and will continue walking a bit further to the pubs on the other side of Gt Portland St. tube.

On 29th July 2010 - rating: 3
[User has posted 1712 recommendations about 1661 pubs]