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Submitted on Sunday, 28th February 2016
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The Gipsy Queen, NW5

166 Malden Road
NW5
NW5 4BS
Phone: 02079164959
Correct details

Reviews of The Gipsy Queen (Average Rating: of 10) Add Review see review guidelines

hondo . left this review about The Gipsy Queen

L shaped interior with an outdoor area to the rear. 4 real ales and numerous keg served.

On 5th October 2023 - no rating submitted
[User has posted 2896 recommendations about 2833 pubs]


Please Note: This review is over a year old.


Steve of N21 left this review about The Gipsy Queen

First time to visit this pub for me and I liked this pub a lot and was suitably impressed. The main bar room with its studded yellow banquettes around the perimeter and classic and conventional tables, chairs and stools throughout is well described by the reviewer below. Then hidden out back is quite a spacious, and a bit colourful outside patio drinking area with separate areas including a couple canopied booth seating areas.
Yes there is clearly a focus on food and as becoming of modern London pub interior makeovers the kitchen is exposed behind glass at one end of the pub. Sunday roasts were prominently advertised but then the rest of the food menu seemed to be Mexican with some sort of tie up with an award winning street food vendor.
But it is an independently run establishment and the key selling point for me was more the 4 cask ale pumps and the 18 keg beer lines and the chalk beer board at the other end of the pub which detailed what was on them.
For my visit three ales were available in the shape of the New River Brewery Isle or Rye, Gorgeous Brewery Goofyhoop and Tiny Rebel Stay Puft, a very good Porter. And the Keg lines included three craft brews from Tiny Rebel and further offerings from Siren, ABC, Camden Town and Belleville.
Live music was advertised for Friday evenings and it was very good to see the showing of the current Women’s world cup so prominently promoted as we would all agree this is an increasingly important demographic to attract into the modern pub. The projection TV (the very sensible option to permanent big screens) was not in use for my visit and I also did not particularly notice the CCTV camera screen behind the bar. But if I had had done I would have taken comfort in the fact that this is a pub management that clearly takes the safety and security of its customers and their possessions seriously.
Apart from my pint of stout being at slightly exorbitant Hampstead level prices , I didn’t find a lot not to like here.

On 24th June 2019 - rating: 7
[User has posted 2147 recommendations about 2019 pubs]


Please Note: This review is over a year old.


Tris C left this review about The Gipsy Queen

July 5th 2015:

I've often passed this pub throughout my life - I remember it well as The Gypsy [sic] Queen in the 1970s - and usually on the opposite side of the road.

This was always a rather rough and scummy pub with unsavoury characters hanging around the door as described by Steve C below. Around 1990 the somewhat bizarre decision was made to take this pub still further down market by giving it an Oirish theme, calling it The Westport Inn and bedecking the fascia with green shamrocks. A quarter century later and common sense prevailed with the pub being given a more upmarket rebranding as The Bluebell. Due to tragic circumstances, this wasn't to last and it closed a few months later. The pub's potential however, had been revealed and it reopened under its original name in late June 2015 under the stewardship of the team team behind the very decent Grafton half a mile down the road.

The website shows just how much work has been done to the place since its Bluebell incarnation, so one can only shudder to think what it must have been like as The Westport Inn - twinned with Hannibal Lecter's dungeon perhaps? The pub has a rear staple-shaped bar with original bar back and clock in the parapet as well as a small metal gantry and features a tiled apron which resembles a piece of Bridget Riley's Op Art. The floor is bare boarded with the use of reclaimed and varnished Victorian boards - they look very good indeed and will only improve with age. There are taupe buckskin banquettes to the perimeter whilst furniture is classic and conventional; the right wall is bare brick and as part of the renovation now has two reclaimed Victorian tiled fireplaces. On the table there are wang peonies and tea lights in glass holders. Lighting comes from shallow tin-shaded lights with filament bulbs suspended from the ceiling. Overall the interior is surprisingly airy. Somewhat ominously, there's a large projector TV though it was showing the Hampton Court Flower Show with the sound off. Nevertheless, it wasn't at all attractive, especially given the effort piled into the rest of the pub and gave the place a bit of a naff Wetherspoon's feel; the stereo played, though noise levels were muted. The crowd in here is generally young(ish) and quite hip though I did spot a handful of what I took to be old school locals, bemused at the display of interior cleanliness and the sight of people with teeth that didn't resemble Stonehenge. Out back there's a landscaped beer garden. The lavatories are good.

Beverages? A large array of craft offerings and premium lagers - this is also a bottle shop. Several pumps were present but only one was serving - it's early days so perhaps the other pumps will be brought on line in the near future. My pint of Ubu's Purity cost £4.10 which is very hefty indeed given the area and it was warm and a bit flat; service was friendly and efficient.

Overall I liked this pub a lot, though it has taken decades for me to be tempted in. I am concerned though that the projector will be used for live sport - this is no longer the type of pub that is going to attract the sports TV viewer and if management is tempted to go down this route, I fear they may well lose their newly acquired fashionable and affluent client base. To this end, I'm deducting 3 points for the TV - the pub gets them back when the awful projector is consigned to a skip. Otherwise it's certainly worth a visit and indeed I'd go so far as to say it's worth a detour.

Update 23rd August 2018:

A repeat visit the other night and I was served a good pint of East London Brewing Company's Jamboree which was still an expensive £4.10, a price I wouldn't expect to pay in either Hampstead or Notting Hill, so why so high here? Three points reinstated due to the raised projector screen but I wasn't impressed with the site of a TV screen behind the bar displaying a 16-image montage of all the pub's CCTV cameras; is this a pub or a supermax prison? I also wasn't impressed with the gaggle of chavvy young women swearing and shouting at each other from the bar to the pavement - couldn't they drink in the nice beer garden provided? So then, three points taken back due to Big Brother watching me and the loud mouthed girls.

Update:

Paid £3.00 for a half of Purity's Mad Goose the other, day which is obscene.

On 2nd March 2018 - rating: 4
[User has posted 2010 recommendations about 1976 pubs]


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Pub location see interactive map of local area
Map location corrected by Steve C
Gospel Oak, 0.47 miles, 9 min walk (show)
Kentish Town West, 0.58 miles, 11 min walk (show)
Hampstead Heath, 0.79 miles, 15 min walk (show)
Latest updates View all updates for The Gipsy Queen, NW5
5th Oct 2023, 18:14
Review submitted by hondo .
 
24th Jun 2019, 08:26
Review submitted by Steve of N21

Pub Details

Pub details supplied by members of this site to the best of their knowledge. Please check with pub directly before making a special trip.

  • Accommodation : No last updated 19 June 2015 by Tris C
  • Bar Billiards : No last updated 04 July 2015 by Tris C
  • Beer Festivals : No last updated 01 May 2014 by ROB Camra
  • Beer Garden : Yes last updated 05 October 2023 by hondo .
  • CAMRA Discount : Yes - 10% - last updated 16 October 2015 by ROB Camra
  • Car Park : No last updated 19 June 2015 by Tris C
  • Darts : No last updated 04 July 2015 by Tris C
  • Dog Friendly : Yes last updated 04 July 2015 by Tris C
  • Hot Food : Yes last updated 05 October 2023 by hondo .
  • Jukebox : No last updated 04 July 2015 by Tris C
  • Karaoke : No last updated 04 July 2015 by Tris C
  • Live Music : No last updated 04 July 2015 by Tris C
  • Live TV Sports : Yes last updated 05 October 2023 by hondo .
  • Micropub : No last updated 04 July 2015 by Tris C
  • Pinball : No last updated 04 July 2015 by Tris C
  • Pool Table : No last updated 04 July 2015 by Tris C
  • Quiz Night : Yes last updated 05 October 2023 by hondo .
  • Real Ale : Yes last updated 05 October 2023 by hondo .
  • WiFi : No last updated 04 July 2015 by Tris C
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