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St John's Tavern, Archway, N19

Pub added by Steve C
91 Junction Road
N19 5QU
Phone: 02072721587

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Reviews (Current Rating Average: 5 of 10) Add Review see review guidelines

Please Note: This review is over a year old.

Blue Scrumpy left this review about St John's Tavern

Gastropub not far from Archway tube. The previous review sums up the interior well. Although, there were just 2 ales on for my visit - Fuller's London Pride & Hammerton N1. My N1 was pleasant enough. Staff were friendly and there were a handful of other customers, 2 of whom were eating. Ok, but nothing out of the ordinary.

On 14th August 2020 - rating: 5
[User has posted 2505 recommendations about 2504 pubs]

Please Note: This review is over a year old.

Pub SignMan left this review about St John's Tavern

This is a very large street corner pub with a large open-plan front bar and a separate restaurant area to the rear. The front room is fairly simple, with bare floorboards and white painted walls dotted with uniform light fittings and a few bits of modern art. A wedge-shaped space to the left of the front entrance has some pew and chair seating arranged around a rather chunky looking fireplace with a huge plain mirror above. The bar runs in a curved L-shape around the rear right corner of the room and has a dark painted tongue and groove counter front and decent pewter top, whilst the bar back looks like a giant wine rack. There are tables and chairs along the front and right-hand walls and there is a TV screen mounted high on the side wall, but this remained off throughout the duration of my visit. More of the same seating can be found to the rear of the room, near to an entrance to a hallway filled with all sorts of modern art which leads on into the formally set dining room. This room has plenty of standard tables and chairs throughout, another blocky fireplace to the right and an open kitchen over to the left. A greeter started making their way towards me as I peered in, so I made a hasty retreat back to the bar, but I did manage a glimpse of the room’s rear wall which has been covered almost entirely with striking framed modern art prints, creating a distinctive and rather impressive visual spectacle.
The bar supports six handpulls, of which two were out of action on my visit, leaving a choice between Fullers London Pride, New River Twin Spring, Siren Pale and Five Points Citrae Pale. The latter turned out to be a pretty well-kept pint which I enjoyed at the bar, listening to the laidback jazz and soul tunes that played in the background.
This was a nice enough place to enjoy a decent pint in and despite the pub’s focus on food, the front room remains a proper drinker’s environment separate from the dining operation. There wasn’t a lot here that left a deep impression on me beyond the decent beer selection and whilst I wouldn’t complain if I found myself back here again, I’m also not sure I’d rush to return either.

On 7th July 2020 - rating: 6
[User has posted 3126 recommendations about 3126 pubs]

Please Note: This review is over a year old.

Moby Duck left this review about St John's Tavern

A single roomed Gastro pub, plenty of sensible height table and chairs around the room set with wine glasses ready for diners but there was no problem sitting down with a beer,alternately there are bar stools at the bar. A decent beer selection was available from the six handpumps, two from Dark Star, Hophead and Sunburst, another two from Gun Brewery, Scaramanga and Project Babylon, London Pride and a Westons Cider Wyldwood completing the offerings.I didn't have any of the service problems experienced by others, though I was in early doors on a Sunday lunchtime. I found it quite comfortable here but its not a pub worth going out of your way for.

On 3rd September 2017 - rating: 6
[User has posted 1889 recommendations about 1862 pubs]

Please Note: This review is over a year old.

Tris C left this review about St John's Tavern

This pub is well described below and on my visit a couple of days ago had just reopened after yet another makeover.

Tables are enormous which militates against intimacy, there's a large central bar with open kitchen - just the thing I don't like. There are dark wood louvre blinds to the windows, which is more restaurant than pub.

However, as mentioned below, the bar is jammed with seated bar hogs and, due to poor acoustics, is very noisy. The combination of the human palisade fence around the bar and the poor acoustics meant that, despite queuing for a while I had no chance of getting a pint, so, utterly fed up, I walked out, never to return. As I was shortly to find out, The Oak & Pastor across the road, whilst far from perfect, is far better than this place.

On 12th September 2015 - rating: 2
[User has posted 2009 recommendations about 1975 pubs]

Please Note: This review is over a year old.

Real Ale Ray left this review about St John's Tavern

A large one room gastro pub. Meals are served in a large dinning area at the back. It's one of these sort of places where you get your loud regulars and you stand waiting to get served as your face isn't well known. Don't go late evening as you haven't a hope. Very dear for the area as they charge West End prices. Will give it a miss next time.

On 14th August 2011 - rating: 5
[User has posted 3389 recommendations about 3388 pubs]

Please Note: This review is over a year old.

Will Larter left this review about St John's Tavern

A handsome stone façade with the biggest hanging lanterns I think I have ever seen. The initial impression on entering is of yet another gutted London pub, food oriented, cavernous and unwelcoming.

The service didn't help to overcome this first thought: I spotted the Windsor and Eton Conqueror (5%, a black IPA) which I had first tasted at the Bree Louise a couple of nights before, and was just about to order a pint when the barman tried to interest me in the Rebellion and Hobgoblin bitters on the other pumps (there are four hand pumps but they are split on different parts of the bar). After I expressed my preference for the black beer he served me half a litre of the Conqueror and immediately skedaddled up the bar to another customer. I waited for his return so that I could ask for a top up, but in the meantime his colleague finished serving three immaculately poured full pints to another customer, so I collared her and indicated my short measure glass. She grabbed it and started filling it from the Guinness tap, despite my loud and appalled shout of "No"! (The very same thing happened to me a couple of nights later at the Dartmouth Arms a few blocks away.)

I think the problem with these gastro-pubs is that they don't value the custom of their drinkers. If you're not eating, they don't have much interest in you. The food action here is mostly confined to the dining room at the back, where the walls are adorned with, or rather totally obscured by, a lot of rather dubious modern paintings. OK, maybe they're striking and eccentric, but I suspect they're just not very good, and probably not an aid to digestion.

I think I'll confine my future visits here to admiring the building from the outside.

On 6th February 2011 - rating: 5
[User has posted 3795 recommendations about 3523 pubs]

Please Note: This review is over a year old.

Steve C left this review about St John's Tavern

It was very busy in here on Friday night and they must have been raking it in charging £3.40 a pint. Adnams, Landlord and brakspear were all on offer along with Premium lagers. The barmaid was nice enough, but she had trouble hearing me as I had to stand behind people sitting at the bar that had no intention of moving for anybody.

I'm not a fan of these large single room central bar gastro pubs.

On 10th November 2008 - rating: 5
[User has posted 5303 recommendations about 5271 pubs]