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Harlequin, City

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user reviews of The Harlequin, City

please note - reviews on this site are purely the opinion of site visitors, so don't take them too seriously.

Tiny but welcoming. Escape from the madding crowd.
Muzzy - 15 May 2012 11:44
Tucked away behind Sadlers Wells this is my favourite local. There's a cosy fire in the winter, great ales and the staff are always friendly. And they do cheese platters... I do love a good cheese platter...
tlc2012 - 28 Jan 2012 15:24
Why listed as City?
It's nowhere near the City, it's Clerkenwell. or Angel perhaps.
Another BITE geography failure.
TiaMariaJim - 17 Dec 2011 03:22
Good old fashioned backstreet boozer. Staff were friendly and beer was good even if choice was a bit limited; despite this, would definitely return.
Campanologist - 16 Dec 2011 16:30
Nice friendly back street boozer with a nice atmosphere and real fire. Only a couple of ales on when I went in but the TT Landlord was great and they also had mulled wine on which was good to see. Pricey, but that's to be expected round this area I guess.
dyyony - 28 Nov 2011 13:09
Ps. The downside is that it's not open on sundays!
shand83 - 14 Jan 2011 14:34
A lovely pub which I'm happy to have as a local. Definitely has an air of 'well-kept secret' about it. Agree with the choice of ales, they could add another one, and perhaps keep the existing ones in slightly better nick. No-nonsense, delicious cheeseboard on offer. This place really comes into it's own in the winter when the fire is going.
shand83 - 14 Jan 2011 14:33
Really nice little pub with genuine, friendly staff. I wish all pubs were like this. I had Speckled Hen ale, which isn't my fav, so a little more choice and it would be perfect.
thejollyone - 8 Nov 2010 23:30
I echo BlindTiger. Delightful cosy pub tucked away not far from the City Road/Angel. TT Landlord and Old Speckled hen both very good and the cheese board generous with home made chutney so good it had us asking for more.
dagenhamdave - 18 Sep 2010 13:41
Lovely little back street pub, will superb tiled exterior. Inside Landlord and Old Speckled Hen on draft, the latter was in decent nick. Free WiFi and all day British cheeseboard!
BlindTiger - 3 Sep 2010 14:51
Pleasant enough small pub that actually is a pub and not some 'trendy wine bar/bistro/gastropub' a la the rest of Islington. Small pubs are getting more of a rarity with the relentless pursuit of profit margins. Downside was the only ale was Taylors Landlord and it wasn't decent enough to warrant a second pint.
Snarling_Mallard - 18 Aug 2010 18:51
Small but nice backstreet pub near Sadlers Wells Theatre. We visited here at opening time yesterday (Saturday) lunchtime. The environment is quite pleasant and the staff are friendly. Taylor Landlord and Black Sheep Best were the two ales available from handpump. Addlestones cider is served. Seating is fairly limited. Plenty of board games are available. Probably the best of 6 pubs I visited in the area yesterday.
blue_scrumpy - 12 Jul 2009 11:54
Brilliant Pub. In Angel there are some wonderful Gastro-Pubs and the Harlequin is not one, although this £1 sarnie saved my bacon a couple Saturdays when I was low on funds. :) They know what they do well and that is good beers from very well maintained equipment and seemingly decent wines. I'm not a pub-wine drinker so judge for yourselves on that one. They have the friendliest staff and Landlord/Landlady I've met. It really feels like a family pub back in the States. There is a Pub Quiz Night on Mondays that is the highlight of my Monday, what a great stress relief.

I also have closer pubs to me but this is definitely my local. I like many a pub in Angel but for friendliness and an easy sense of home and hearth, nothing beats this pub!
PaxVeritas - 24 May 2009 09:22
Oh dear. The old landlady seems to have left and taken the beer quality with her. Murky beer, sloppily served and overpriced. Disappointed.
chick - 6 Apr 2009 09:50
The Landlord beer was well kept and very nice.

Barmaid kept apologising about the prices though! £1 for a small packet of kettle chips.

A tiny pub, could be cosy or uncomfortable, depending on the numbers. Very low sofas, but wide-bum bar stools.
WadesWorld - 23 Nov 2008 11:57
Last night I hosted my boyfriend's 30th birthday party in the Harlequin and can't give them enough praise. It's a perfect venue for a little party - they let us put decorations up and bring our own cake, brought out a fab selection of food (mmmmm cheese plate...), the staff were brilliant - really helpful and friendly. Top marks for making it a truly memorable night.
KatA - 8 Aug 2008 11:20
Went in there Sun 20/07 in the afternoon and no one was in. Barkeeper was very friendly and 'chatty'. Only had 1 real ale on (TT Landlord) but well conditioned.
markos - 25 Jul 2008 13:41
Sounds like the last reviewer came in on a bad night. I really like this place, it's a cracking little local, not my closest pub but worth a walk. About a year ago it used to be such an old man pub, ugly wallpaper and dirty carpets caked with dog hair. Plus random Guinness memorabilia screwed to the walls, but this is London not Galway. Just an average boozer.

The new owners gave it a decent makeover with a proper telly for watching sports (it was recently a quiet haven for watching the Euro's away from the crowd crush of Angel) and they've opened up the outside area at the back for BBQ's. Ales are of good quality (Landlord + guests) with the standard lagers on draught. The wine list keeps the missus happy too. Never had a problem with the staff, some of them Aussie, some English, so getting your order understood is not an issue. Overall a fine little local pub that is not trying too hard to be anything it's not.
owenontour - 4 Jul 2008 17:21
I went to this pub, mainly because of some of the reviews on this site. I was extremely disappointed:

The service was bad. The female bartender did not know anything about the beer they served, and now the worst thing: We were there around closing time, so we saw the bartender take the lemons and limes cut out for use in drinks, she then poured some lemon soda in the trays with the slices. Then she used her finger to stir it around, after which she put a towel over and put it in the fridge. Apparantly this pub saves the slices for several days, and have a low sense of hygiene.

I will not go back there. I suspect the profile "G2003" is the owner, since this profile has written the same 5 star review on all the standard review boards.
gjoede - 15 Jun 2008 22:46
Popped in last week for a pre "Peter Grimes" pint at this pub next to Sadlers Wells. The décor is bare floors and scumbled paintwork. Scrubbed pine tables. Chalkboards with the daily specials. Non-matching chairs. All doubtless carefully chosen to create the effect that it's a charmingly bohemian hotchpotch. A wee bit artificial for my taste, but wife (had she been there) would love it.
Now, the serious bit. There were two ales on: Black Sheep and Timothy Taylors Landlord. Didn't try the Black Sheep on this occasion, because the Landlord was as tippety-tip-top-tip as it gets. So we stuck with it for the second round. *And* the quick one during the first interval, hot-footing it round from the theatre. We'd booked interval drinks & paid for them, a handy feature. Yes, the beer was superb.

And the food looked good too. There was a theater goers offer at £10 per head, which included a glass of champagne at the interval as well as food before the show. Needless to say the ale sufficed.

All in all, a pleasant pub which wears its pretensions lightly and confidently. And the service was efficient and friendly: when it was noticed that I had a chipped glass, I was given the next drink free. Can't argue with that kind of customer service.
Alph_river - 2 Mar 2008 01:04
Love this pub - warm and friendly staff, great ales and board games!

(Love the free wi-fi too!)
G2003 - 4 Jan 2008 14:58
Used to love this place - an Islington pub not overrun with wannabe idiots. Great music, decent prints on the walls, and two dogs.

Sadly someone has now given it the standard makeover with lurid red walls and iffy sofas.

Won't be going back.
nk74 - 19 Oct 2007 14:02
This pub has changed owners very recently and I have to say it it is a very different place to what it was. Whereas it used to be an old run down pub, after some minor improvements it has been transformed into a much nicer space whilst still retaining its theatre pub roots...
julesjb - 25 Aug 2007 02:22
I made a detour on my usual route to visit this pub for the first time. Looked pleasant enough to sit outside and enjoy the sun with a decent pint.
Inside there were two dogs roaming around, the carpet and floor covered in dog hair. I ordered a pint of landlord. Must be a special version as it came with bits. I will not return.
rob372 - 23 May 2007 07:57
Re: my comment below. When I said "the Landlord had run out", I was referring to the beer (Timothy Taylor's Landlord), not the actual landlord!
nigelrowe - 29 Jan 2007 11:01
I made a special journey to visit this pub. Sadly, my friends and I were disappointed. It was very smokey, and the foul-mouthed clientele were a tad intimdating. The Landlord had run out, the London Pride only dispensed water (after drawing 4 pints, the landlady said "That appears to be off!", which left Old Hookey.

Maybe this was an unfortunate time to visit; however I won't be back.
nigelrowe - 29 Jan 2007 11:00
A nice, small pub. The beer is kept well, if a little generic. The landlady is friendly and fantastic.
Piggles - 29 Apr 2006 10:00
THIS PUB IS NOT IN THE CITY - ITS IN ISLINGTON
anonymous - 4 Apr 2006 10:05
A great place - friendly resident dog! Definitely worth a look in if you like real pubs. Can't remember what beers they serve but I do remember that its cheap.
anonymous - 4 Jan 2006 16:23
A quiet, old fashioned local but with well kep beers and a good range of food. Godd sized helpings and a blazing fire in winter.

Settees at the back of the bar and pavement tables in the summer - until at present (the local council may ban these soon).

A change from the busy high Street bars nearer the Angel tube station.
amleyland - 25 Nov 2005 15:26

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