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Pub Of The Month - November 2021 with rpadam on the Pub Forum

Alwyne Castle, Canonbury, N1

83 St. Pauls Road
N1 2LY
Phone: 02073597351

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Pub Type

Castle (Mitchells & Butlers)
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Reviews (Current Rating Average: of 10) Add Review see review guidelines

Graham Coombs left this review about Alwyne Castle

A good solid pub marking where licensed premises get a bit sparse on the way out of town, nicely fettled apart from the obligatory ceiling ducts (personal hate). The interior is Z-shaped, with the bar in one leg and a kitchen/restaurant in the other. Outside there is a large tabled area screened from the road by a bamboo hedge. Four handpumps were claimed to serve rotating ales but all that was on offer was Doom Bar and TT Landlord.

On 16th September 2021 - rating: 7
[User has posted 2465 recommendations about 2410 pubs]

Please Note: This review is over a year old.

Pub SignMan left this review about Alwyne Castle

This is a smart single room gastro-style pub just a short walk from Highbury & Islington station. The room is bare boarded throughout, with scruffy old boards to the front and newer ones further into the room, mainly around the bar area. Long button backed banquettes run along the front wall, including around a nice bay window, with high tables and stools arranged in a row through the centre of the room and a nice high-backed bench booth in the rear left corner. The servery extends along the mid-part of the rear wall and has a bright painted wood panel counter front which contrasts somewhat with the plain mirror bar back. Walls have also been painted in a rather plain shade and decorated with run of the mill bits and boobs such as mirrors, a few small paintings and an unused TV screen, none of which really enhances the character of the place – in fact the only really distinctive features come in the form of a few decorative lampshades. To the right of the bar, the room runs back into a smart dining area with plenty of formally set tables in an area that seemed surprisingly cosy but was exclusively for the use of those wanting food. A chilled-out reggae soundtrack played quietly in the background throughout most of my stay and there was a decent buzz from a good post-work crowd.
The bar supports four handpulls, but two of these were out of action when I arrived, leaving a choice between Adnams Mosaic and Hog’s Back Tea – a choice that vanished as soon as I ordered the latter and it spluttered its final dregs before the glass could be filled. I’ve never really enjoyed the Mosaic when I’ve had it before but decided to give it another try, shelling out £5.05 for the privilege. It was in pretty good shape but remains a beer I can happily live without.
This place seemed pretty bland and inoffensive to me, creating a basic pub setting but not really doing much to create a nice ambiance or some character. Overall, the pub left very little impression on me and whilst their beer was perfectly drinkable and there was nothing here I particularly disliked, I think I’ll stick to my regular haunts when I’m in this part of town, rather than bother with this place again.

On 3rd July 2020 - rating: 6
[User has posted 2630 recommendations about 2630 pubs]

Please Note: This review is over a year old.

custodian 42 left this review about Alwyne Castle

One large room with bar to rear. Eating area to right and a large beer garden to the front. Four hand pumps and a large selection of keg. Not particularly inspiring.

On 24th June 2018 - rating: 4
[User has posted 1693 recommendations about 1691 pubs]

Please Note: This review is over a year old.

Malden man left this review about Alwyne Castle

The main area consists of a long rectangular room with the long bar opposite the front wall, centrally split by a curved bay. Scuffed floorboards, the services are exposed at ceiling level, opposite the bar are a row of high butchers block tables with stools, better seating elsewhere at banquettes and tables including a curved banquette around the front bay and a pair of pews at one end. The area extends a bit to the right beyond a fireplace into an area which looks to be purely for dining with an open kitchen adjacent, this runs through into a conservatory type space. Loads of seating outside to the front, much of which is painted sky blue but also includes a barbecue area. No one out there today on a day of persistent rain.
There are clipboard menus on the tables, the dining area has copper cooking vessels suspended from the ceiling, little else of interest, the place felt a bit clinical.
Four handpumps, Doom Bar, Proper Job (£4.55), Truman's Fire and Dandy and one unclipped.
To me the pub felt devoid of atmosphere and a bit dismal, in fairness the weather was awful, the pub is large but had more staff than customers at the time but despite these counter points there is still something lacking.

On 24th January 2018 - rating: 5
[User has posted 1690 recommendations about 1664 pubs]

Please Note: This review is over a year old.

Real Ale Ray left this review about Alwyne Castle

We popped in here for a swift half on route back to Highbury Corner, after visiting the Snooty Fox. Four handpumps on the bar, with three in use, Redemption Trinity, Thornbridge Jaipur and Doombar. I went for the Jaipur, which I haven't had for a good while, so it hit the spot. This is a well kept pub with a comfortable interior seating wise and no loud music on our Monday afternoon visit. The large seating area outside with some timber huts was impressive, so too was the large conservatory at the far end of the pub.

On 17th June 2017 - rating: 6
[User has posted 3035 recommendations about 3035 pubs]

Please Note: This review is over a year old.

Just a quick pint, then I'm off left this review about Alwyne Castle

Attractive symmetrical façade with a large central bow window. Not as large inside as one might imagine, but there is a conservatory beyond the side kitchen and dining area. Semi-modern furniture and decor. Plenty of solid benches out front; probably a nice spot when the sun's out, but several people making use of the blankets provided on a cold winter evening. Three of four handpumps on when I visited, with Doom Bar, Redemption Urban Dark (£3.80) and Sunny Republic Hop Dog available.

On 22nd November 2014 - rating: 6
[User has posted 6620 recommendations about 6620 pubs]

Please Note: This review is over a year old.

Rex Rattus left this review about Alwyne Castle

This is a prominent pub on a busy North London junction. The frontage is mainly undressed brickwork, but with a smattering of "gastro" grey. There are a few picnic benches outside at the front, tastefully screened from the main road by some bamboo hedging.

Inside there's nothing traditional about it, although the bar counter looks like a bit of original woodwork - although presumably not too old as Alan Winfield dates the pub only to the 60s. The main bar as you enter has the furnishings you would expect. It's bare-boarded, with some butchers block tall tables, with tall stools, sofas in their traditional place in front of the fireplace, some banquettes, but thankfully with its fair share of normal tables and chairs. There is effedtively what is a separate room room reached through an archway to the right and rear of the servery. This room is traditionally furnished, and looks like the sort of area that diners might choose eat in, although I saw no signs saying that it was a dining area.

The ale front is encouraging. They had on London Pride, Redemption Urban Dusk, and Butcombe Rare Breed (which was in great nick), and a fourth pump had a Doom Bar clip reversed. When I was in on Monday afternoon there were a couple of single page printed menus on the tables. One was for a fixed price menu - two course for £10 and three for £13, and looked to be decent enough stuff on it. The main courses on the main menu looked OK as well, with the handmade cheeseburger at £9.95.

This is not a bad pub, although it doesn't have any of what I would term "pub character". It's a madeover "pub/restarant", although the beer was well kept and the top up I requested was given gracefully. This is not a pub I would make a beeline for, but OK for a swift one if you happen to be passing, as I was.

On 22nd November 2012 - rating: 6
[User has posted 2592 recommendations about 2506 pubs]

Please Note: This review is over a year old.

Tris C left this review about Alwyne Castle

A very spacious pub which has recently reverted to its full name of the Alwyne Castle. Big...airy...and boasts outside drinking space for 300. Generally a nice pub, especially in summer. Would I make a point of visiting? Probably yes (in summer).

Worth a visit (especially if you've a large crowd to please). No obvious complaints...

On 5th May 2011 - rating: 5
[User has posted 1316 recommendations about 1295 pubs]

Please Note: This review is over a year old.

Alan Winfield left this review about Alwyne

This 60s built pub is a short walk from the busy highbury corner.
This pub used to be called the Alwyne Castle but after being given the trendy makeover thought Castle was'nt trendy enough for this pub.
Once inside here there was one largish room and also a largish conservitory i sat in the main bar area at the front of the pub which was very quiet early dinnertime.
There were two real ales on here i had a drink of London Pride which tasted slightly off the other beer was Black Sheep bitter.
This pub was fairly comfortable and ok for a quick drink.

On 6th February 2011 - rating: 7
[User has posted 6113 recommendations about 6113 pubs]

Please Note: This review is over a year old.

Steve C left this review about Alwyne

This pub is split into three sections with the main bar area at the front and some more seating to the right where there is an open kitchen. Tacked onto the end of this space is a conservatory and a large beer garden strewn with picnic tables, but I did not investigate fully as the time of my visit was approaching midnight as this pub is open from midday until midnight everyday of the week.

There is a strong leaning towards food here and an extensive amount of wines are available for those who do not want one of the many premium lagers available from the bar. One of the four hand pumps was off during my visit, but the other functioning three were drawing Pride, Doom Bar and Brewdog Edge. The service was friendly and Guinness well poured, but the other customers ranged from pretentious to bottom feeder so the atmosphere wasn’t great. Maybe this was more due to the timing of my visit than the pub itself.

There is a DJ on Friday nights and a Quiz on Mondays from 20:30. Children are permitted until 19:00 and the conservatory area is available for hire at a price.

I don’t plan on returning here, but it is always handy to know a pub that is open late every night.

On 17th September 2010 - rating: 5
[User has posted 3599 recommendations about 3579 pubs]

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