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The Queens Head, WC1

66 Acton Street
Phone: 02077135772

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Reviews (Current Rating Average: 7 of 10) Add Review see review guidelines

Quinno _ left this review about The Queens Head

A revisit found some ivories being tinkled on the old Joanna and a decent set of three ales on the go, my Redemption Trinity clocked in at a non-London price and in decent nick too (NBSS 3). My attention was then diverted by the presence of the Rothaus Pils and wheat beers. Mrs Quinno’s By the Saspirilla Sour was also an intriguing extra. It’s a really handy and unpretentious little pub this, and I like it.

December 2015
Not much change in here since 2013, this time I spotted an upright piano and that the original front windowage now has lithograph style queens head motif which looks like the one off the old Victorian stamps. Live jazz and ragtime music nights on Thu and Sun. Wifi available. A few people in on a dreary mid-Monday afternoon and the background music was agreeably muted, allowing chatter to predominate. No TVs in evidence either. Food is limited to bar snacks (sandwiches, pies, meat platters). Three ales on; Redemption Hopspur, Bristol Beer Factory Milk Stout and Great Heck Shankhir. I tried the latter and it was in very good nick. Also at £4 a pint not bad at all given it’s a 5.9% brute. In addition, three relatively unusual boxed ciders behind the bar. Bottle and keg menus on each table with a one word descriptor of style and clearly labelled prices. There’s also apparently an in-house brewery but I didn’t note any of their wares being available. This unassuming pub gets a lot right and it should be a default for the area, if not a destination venue for the discerning punter with an all-zones Travelcard. Well done the owners. 8.5

May 2013
Tucked away down a side street off the Grays Inn Road, 5 minutes’ walk from Kings Cross. This is a nice little boozer with an exceptionally good ale selection on my visit - Marble Lagonda, W&E Conquer and Dark Star Hophead - as well as a couple of proper ciders and premium left-field kegs. The condition of both of my ales was fine and given that we were the first people through the door on a Friday afternoon, that’s a good sign. Prices are quite cheap for London and there’s a CAMRA discount available on top of that too. The barman was friendly and knowledgeable, striking up conversation about our forthcoming pub crawl. The interior has been knocked-through a bit, but a number of original features remain with some nice original blue tiling (listed!) and glasswork in evidence. I imagine this would have been quite a classic Victorian interior before it got vandalized. A rear skylight allows for some much-needed light into the recess area. The retro brown-tiled bogs do really need an overhaul. Other features of note include a working upright piano, board games and a nice Victorian postage stamp pub sign (a Charrington’s original too). A bit of a hidden gem this one and in an area not exactly bursting with quality pubs this should be a simple pick; I imagine I’ll be back here sooner rather than later. Rated 8

On 20th December 2019 - rating: 8
[User has posted 3969 recommendations about 3957 pubs]

Ian Mapp left this review about The Queens Head

Long, narrow single roomed pub. Mirrors on one wall, bar on opposite side. Piano. Couple of benches outside.

Good Beer Guide 2019 entry but I wasn't massively impressed with the Windsor and Eton Guardsman, served in unasked for handle glass.

Old school pub and worth popping in should be in the area but not really a destination pub.

On 7th July 2019 - rating: 6
[User has posted 641 recommendations about 635 pubs]

Brainy Pool left this review about The Queens Head

once you get over the almost overbearing trendiness of the clientele and staff, you have to admit it’s a very good pub. The only food I could see advertised was tapas style bar snacks. Live music of the hipster variety. Good selection of interesting ales and friendly service. Will’s right about it being off the beaten track but it’s in a crap area of shady individuals that I will be actively avoiding a return to, but helps to keep the tourists away I suppose.

On 14th May 2019 - rating: 8
[User has posted 735 recommendations about 717 pubs]

Please Note: This review is over a year old.

Tris C left this review about The Queens Head

I first came here in early May 2016 and was much taken with the place which had recently reopened after a worryingly long period of closure. A return visit the other night and the pub has settled in well and is now even better.
There's a very attractive fascia, lanterns with the Charrington logo in metal bands across the front and name still visible to the hanging sign. Included in the ensemble, is the lovely bow window and pink granite pilasters. Inside and the floor features some lovely polychromatic tiles (possibly encaustic?) as well as part herringbone wood block to the front with dark ash laminate to the rear and a small room to the back which leads out into a tiny fag garden. The walls are swathed in white painted Anaglypta and there's much dark lacquered wood with a fine etched mirrored bar back and an ornately carved wooden fireplace surround. The rear of the pub features a large lantern which may once have been above a billiard table and furniture is simple and wooden. Much brewery regalia is on display as well as a wall clock bearing the name Newgate, which may have come from the eponymous and infamous prison, now the site of the Old Bailey. However, it's the beautiful brown and sea green glazed tiles beneath the dado that are most likely to attract attention. Music plays at sensible level though I have seen the upright piano being put to good use on previous occasions.
Friendly bar staff dishing out three ales: one I couldn't see due to a customer, thereafter Redemption's Trinity and Smash Oricana Tropical Ale at an increasingly reasonable £3.90 a pint. I didn't see the 'tropical' in the title until after it was poured, but it didn't taste like Lilt and was very welcome on a warm and sticky night.
This is a very nice pub indeed, in an oasis of mediocrity. Certainly one of WC1's best and probably one of the best in Camden; worth seeking out.

On 21st July 2018 - rating: 8
[User has posted 953 recommendations about 939 pubs]

Please Note: This review is over a year old.

Will Larter left this review about The Queens Head

"Best Pub in London", claims the hand-written sign beside the front door, with, underneath, the exhortation to "come inside and argue about it", so I did. I mentioned to the barman that a few days previously I had used the BPinL term at the nearby Scottish Stores, when I was given a Camra discount on a round of five drinks despite being the only Camra member in the group. He replied with a half of Redemption Trinity for just £1.55 - again, with a Camra discount applied (admittedly only a 3.0% beer, but still remarkably cheap for London).

I liked it here, and would have liked it better if the beer had been to my taste, but it reminded me too much of Robinsons Lemon Barley Water. The Queens Head is sufficiently off the beaten track to have the feel of a locals pub, making it worth the effort of seeking it out, if there's time before your train out of London.

On 6th March 2017 - rating: 7
[User has posted 2599 recommendations about 2452 pubs]

Please Note: This review is over a year old.

hondo . left this review about The Queens Head

Old style exterior and interior serving real ale,"craft keg" and continental keg. Live music advertised.

On 20th October 2016 - no rating submitted
[User has posted 2692 recommendations about 2636 pubs]

Please Note: This review is over a year old.

Bucking Fastard left this review about The Queens Head

This pub has many pleasing features,an impressive curved and etched front window,a mosaic floor by the entrance ,good mirrors running down the wall opposite the bar and a quirky beer garden at the rear,just a square space with four tables and high walls which was very popular for those that wanted a tab with their beer.The interior is open plan with a small rear section beyond an arch,and there is a large double sofas and stools below the front window,and chunky tables beyond the bar,some capable of seating 10 so you may need to share space when the pub is busy.It was proving very popular on Friday afterwork,with a young professional crowd.Food is platters of cold meats,cheeses,houmous etc which is very sensible and keeps the focus on drinking and socialising.Less sensible is the booking of tables rather than operate a traditional first come first served seating arrangement.The interior is small and the overlarge furniture does also lead to sub optimal availabilty of seating.
There are four handpumps with one dedicated to a real cider and ,on my trip,Redemption Trinity,Otley O3 (tired) and Windsor & Eton Tree Tops(very good).There is an extensive and expensive bottled beer list while 15 keg taps offer more ciders and craft beers with several stouts and high ABV options.My colleagues tried Kernel Pale Ale but at £5.80 ,over carbonated and very cold it proved a disappointment.However keg beers were much more popular with the younger customers than the real ale. There is a sign on the wall which states that brewing takes place on the premises and enquire at the bar about availability,but without more information we did not persue this option.
The interior is very pleasing and it's a lively pub,no doubt fun with live music on but if visiting to check the real ale you are very dependent on luck due to the constant rotating choice,sometimes outstanding but quite average on my visit which was a shame.Worth popping in if crawling but maybe not a destination real ale pub despite its GBG listing.

On 30th January 2016 - rating: 7
[User has posted 2054 recommendations about 2054 pubs]

Please Note: This review is over a year old.

Steve C left this review about The Queens Head

The Queens Head is an open plan pub with a low table to the left of the entrance under the front window. The bar on the left hand wall faces some seating along the right and at the rear is a large table where a group, not unlike the Pubs Galore Shed Dwellers, were supping beer and eating sharing platters of meat and cheese. During my recent Monday afternoon visit the bar was stocked with European premium/craft lagers and the three hand pumps were drawing Saltaire Brewery’s Triple Chocoholic, Redemption Brewing’s Trinity and XT Brewing Company’s One (Blonde). On the back bar I also spotted of a couple of boxes that were dispensing real cider. The food available during the afternoon consisted of bar snacks and the aforementioned platters.

There are no televisions in here and the only sign of music was the jazz, ragtime and blues advertised for Thursdays and Sundays. Free Wifi was advertised. Out the front are a couple of picnic tables and there is a small enclosed decked area at the rear with some graffiti art on the walls. This area is designed for smokers.

I found the service to be polite and it was nice to see an effort being made in the selection of beer. I would enjoy a revisit to this pub.

On 12th October 2015 - rating: 7
[User has posted 3586 recommendations about 3565 pubs]

Please Note: This review is over a year old.

Real Ale Ray left this review about The Queens Head

The pub had a good atmosphere, when we called in on a Sunday eve. This was down to a jazz pianist, percussion and a singer. The pub also had a good supply of drinkers in, so the beer was flowing. The pub featured a wall of green glazed Victorian tiles along the wall at dado height. The other main feature for me, was the Weird Beard Brewery Hit the Lights at 5.8%. The Redemption Brewery Trinity also had bags of flavour, also tried was the Tiny Rebel Welsh Red Ale. Prices here were round the £3.80 mark.

On 13th February 2015 - rating: 8
[User has posted 2975 recommendations about 2975 pubs]

Please Note: This review is over a year old.

Gill Smith left this review about The Queens Head

Called in yesterday to try the beer from Queens Head brewery or QHB as it is sometimes known as and it went down a treat. Also had a Redemption beer on, and appeared to be a popular local pub.

On 3rd December 2014 - rating: 7
[User has posted 1306 recommendations about 1196 pubs]

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