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Famous Royal Oak, Muswell Hill

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user reviews of the Famous Royal Oak, Muswell Hill

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

Great pub, good vibe, very good beer
greenwhiteorange - 16 Oct 2013 17:07
Moved back to London after a year away and pleased to report this pub is just as wonderful as it used to be. Probably my favourite pub in the city. Great Guinness, lovely atmosphere, great surroundings and wonderful staff. What more could you want? Great.
lookmother - 8 Nov 2012 17:28
A wonderful 'off the beaten track' pub with good service and a great quiz every Thursday. Would like to see some more guest ales on from time to time but all in all a lovely local.
earlydoors - 8 Mar 2012 16:31
I have to agree with the posater "lookmother", best pint of Guinness I've ever tasted. coming from an Irishman.
kb209 - 17 Feb 2011 20:01
ventured in here today... lovely place, friendly staff, and best pints of guinness I've ever tasted
kb209 - 17 Feb 2011 19:59
Popped in the other lunchtime for a swift half - good beer and friendly staff
StatusBaby - 26 Aug 2010 22:53
Good style old local not far from my house. As has been said its now the only Traditional Pub left in Muswell Hill thats not been turned into a restaurant. Good old fashioned service good Beer no fancy crap Brilliant what more do you need.
half_tuppence - 3 Jun 2010 23:58
This is a good old school traditional Pub which is now about the only decent Traditional Pub left in Muswell Hill that has not been wreaked by the foodie brigade. I would always recommend to anyone a walk down to here if your in Muswell Hill area Rather than going in any of the Restaurant/Pubs around the Broadway that are mostly just over priced licenced restaurants.

Tottenhansean as Far as I know the Famous was added just too stop confusion with the other Royal Oak that was in Sydney Road Muswell Hill N10 2NL
Alesonly - 25 Feb 2010 21:25
I generally find this pub okay and they will usually do their best to get you a taxi if you need it. However, on a freezing night this week a door was permanently open to accommodate smokers's whims, which didn't make for the pleasantest of experiences....
DunL - 21 Dec 2009 15:44
Final refuge in Muswell/Crouch End after the demise of the Well and the Princess Alexandra down the hill.

I think the external look, criticised in other comments, has saved this pub from gastroization. Noone in their right mind would try and make this a haute cuisine destination and I am truly thankful.

Nice London Pride, pool table (but round a corner so you can ignore it if you want), TVs but not too obtrusive. I once sat through an electric storm on the porch - they got soaked serving us refils at our table outside, lovely.

If this one shuts too I'm moving house...
456 - 1 Apr 2009 12:32
Good pub, bit of a tek, but worth it.
Does anyone know whats its famous for?
I often wondered.
tottenhamsean - 2 Nov 2008 17:17
It's true, The Famous Royal Oak is a welcome relief from the souless hostelries on offer in Muswell Hill in that it actually feels like a 'local'. It has one significant drawback for female patrons however. Perhaps due to its mainly masculine clientele there's often a distinct whiff emanating from the male toilets. For some reason (easy access?) the gents' toilet door is wedged open and in addition, women needing using loo beside it run the gauntlet of the odour and the last minute fly-hitching of the emerging 'regular'. Can really puts a girl off her beer.
pbarney - 26 Jul 2008 10:34
Don't judge a book by its cover is the best way to explain The Famous Royal Oak. The hideous 60's facade looks and feels like the estate pubs you find in inner cities. Hell holes where local villains and wannabe hard men strut and posture and settle old scores with a pool cue and a broken bottle.

But, in the style of Alexandra Armstrong in the Pimms ads, I feel like saying 'Hang on a minute, this is Muswell Hill!'. For those that don't know this is a distinctly genteel and educated part of North London with diligently pruned topiary and immaculately preserved Edwardian architecture. The Famous Royal Oak which sits a good minute’s walk from the main Broadway in a tranquil residential street cuts a rather odd figure.

But don't be fooled, because inside the atmosphere could not be more friendly and welcoming and so much so that you'd be hard pressed to find anything like it in the main part of Muswell Hill. With exception of the John Baird it's just full of big chain bars for 20 year olds. The Royal Oak is not trendy, stylish or cutting edge, it just does what a good local boozer should do, provide a warm and cheerful oasis for those wanting to watch football, take a rest from walking the dog, or simply pass the time of day with a pint of London Pride or IPA. Perhaps it’s North London's answer to the Rovers Return and if you hark back to the days when people bought their kids and dogs along to pubs, where the Landlord welcomes everyone who walks in, where looking at a stranger brings a smile rather than scowl then give this place a try as places like this are becoming an endangered species.

David67 - 6 May 2008 18:08
As I Have lived here in Muswell Hill for over 20 years after reading the reviews on this Pub I thought I would give it a try as never been in here before even though I pass it nearly every day.I Was pleasantly surprised to still see a proper Pub thats not been ruined or turned into a awful gastro Pub like every other boozer in Muswell Hill. I will definitely return again and have no problem recommending it to others. Very good service good beer & pleasant customers.
Alesonly - 19 Feb 2008 00:07
What a great little pub. I avoided it for years due to a general fear of what might lie within. Frosted windows, weird '60s exterior, punters spilling out onto the street - it had all of the hallmarks of a rough locals pub.

How wrong was I?! It's absolutely wonderful. Cosy, welcoming with a great landlord and his wonderful family staffing the bar, best pint of Guinness in London...the list goes on.

In The Alexandra and the Famous Royal Oak, Muswell Hill has two pubs to be proud of...now if only someone would shut down The Village.
lookmother - 4 Jan 2008 12:39
We attended the quiz and were quite taken with the pub. From the outside it doesn't look much, being in the "classic" 60s estate pub style. Inside it's quite small and pleasant. Lots of nick-nacks and also a very readable selection of books, which I was told are the landlord's own - very trusting of him. A friendly atmosphere and two or three locals had dogs with them, which was nice and contributed to a genuine feel of a local's pub which is all too rare in London nowadays. Not a desperately exciting ale selection (Pride and a reasonably well-served IPA) but the bar did have a very extensive selection of scotches. In any case, the pleasant atmosphere made up for any shortfall in ale selection.

grecian - 20 Jul 2007 09:57
I was advised to go to this pub by a local road sweeper as I was complaining to him that Muswell Hill was devoid of any old local pubs.

I thought this place was great with the friendly locals sitting around the bar and the juke box set at the perfect volume that you could hear it, but didn’t have to talk over it. There was a pool table around the back under a large TV screen and at the other end of the pub were people sitting reading in a surrounding of old books and such paraphernalia.

They closed at midnight on the Friday I was in there and before the bar shut the staff came around and personally told people that the bar was about to close and to order another drink if one was required… Fantastic!!!

It felt great not to be rushed at closing time and I will be back to this pub.

Strongers - 28 Feb 2007 11:28
A decent local pub, away from the trendists of Muswell Hill, so more relaxed, you will also get a seat on a Saturday night. Juke Box, Pool Table, Football on TV, Fruit and Games machines. Not super cheap, but we are in London. You may also bump into the mighty Ferry Penwick of East Enders fame...
nik2740 - 7 Apr 2006 12:58
It's alright in there. Off the beaten track so not full of the usual crowds you find on the Broadway. Much cheaper than the usual M Hill pub bar and much better.
fatherpierre - 7 Mar 2005 10:42
went there after work on the strength of the post . was well pleased, this was a proper pub, in the best way, a true local, with a real local-pub atmosphere, but not imtimidating . the inside was devoid of chrome, stainless steel and pine and such like . only london pride, but very well kept . muswell hill is very middle class, full of coffee bars jeeps, three-wheeled push-chairs containing babies called oliver, william and harry, with drinking-establishments to match, so a good find .
dan - 1 Jul 2004 12:16
one bar. pool table. large patio. ambience. a real local. excellent for sitting outside in summer. off the beaten track.
andrew - 9 Jun 2004 01:10

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