Visited: Monday 18 January by JC
Another pub that can be found in the warren of residential streets that lie between Holloway Road and Hornsey Road in Islington. It’s spectacularly easy to get lost on in these roads, which all look alike, but there are also some surprisingly nice pubs to be found, like oases in the desert (see the North Nineteen and Swimmer).
Tough competition for The Landseer, then. It’s a very spacious pub, with enough room to spread out the tables and give everyone some privacy. It’s also enough room for them to devote half of the building to a dedicated restaurant: this is usually a Boozehound pet peeve, because it often means all the drinkers are rammed into a small space with nowhere to stand or sit, looking enviously at the usually completely empty tables of the restaurant half which are out of bounds simply because we’re spending our money on drink rather than food. But in this case they’ve probably got the room to get away with it (there was certainly no danger of it being too full on this Monday).
It’s fairly sparsely decorated, but there are plenty of very comfy chairs and sturdy wooden tables, and a large collection of books so you can spend hours here in solitude away from your loved ones, but also boardgames if you’re one of those weird people who enjoys human interaction.
The lager selection was somewhat limited, and only one ale when we visited: New World, which was alright but we moved onto the Oranjeboom after that. We had to stay for a second, because it’s a ten pound minimum spend on card so we had to start a tab. If we were being cynical we’d suggest that was the reason for the minimum spend, but we’re not cynical, we’re filled with joy and naïve wonder. Fuck anyone who says different.
We’ve had mixed experiences with the food and would probably recommend you go for the tapas over the main menu. There’s also a nice looking cheese board available.
Overall it’s another solid pub for when you’re trapped between the squalor of Holloway Road and the, er, squalor of Hornsey Road. It was emptier than the nearby Swimmer, but the atmosphere was more lively, thanks to the presence of about eight old boys who were certainly regulars, loudly putting the world to rights in the corner. It was like a vision of the future for Boozehound.
Do they do food? Yes, tapas and regular pub food, and a cheese board.
Are they in the 21st Century? Minimum spend means you’ll have to stay for more than one.
Are there dogs? Fun fact: a Landseer is a type of dog breed. So we assume it’s dog friendly.
I’m hungover, do they do a Bloody Mary? There was a ready made jug on the bar, which is especially impressive because it was a Monday.
I want to smoke: There benches out front. There were heaters but we couldn’t find the switch for them.
Any televisions? Yes.