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73 Highbury Park
“A bit of hipster cool in Highbury” is one reader’s verdict on this self-styled Arts Club – actually a dinky café, bar and tapas joint with easy-on-the-eye decor, cosy corners, occasional jazz
musicians and comedy nights. “Pretty damn fine Spanish breakfasts” receive regular endorsements, and the food is authentic stuff – even if portions are “minuscule” and prices are on the high side.
Mushroom croquetas, oxtail stew, grilled sardines, chorizo pinchos and hake with mussels in wine sauce have all been endorsed, and the Spanish cheesecake is reckoned to be “up there with Vina’s in
San Sebastián”. There are also some intriguing Spanish wines to wash it all down (including a number of organics) – try the “delicious” white Pardas Rupestris. Otherwise, drop by for coffee and
weekend brunch, with a chatty, affable crew on hand to deliver the goods.
73 Highbury Park
Arsenal Tube Station 594m
Drayton Park Station 809m
Highbury Fields 626m
University of North London - Rocket Complex 974m
Wed-Sun 8.30am-2pm (Sat-Sun 10am-2.30pm) Tues-Sat 7-11pm
Food & Drink:
Rate & Review
Food + drink: 5
eing a local to Highbury for many years, I somehow managed to pass this regularly without noticing… until last week. It's small and unobtrusive and doesn't look much like a tapas bar at all, and in a way that's because strictly speaking this is more appropriately described as piece of art that serves great tapas.
After walking in and perching myself on the restaurant counter for a pint, I found the owner and staff very interesting and entertaining. I was told that on Thursday's they do Jazz so last night made my way. On arrival the Jazz was in full swing and a party of locals were obviously appreciating the mood. Despite this one young lady had decided to ditch her home office and finish off her work by the window clearly enjoying that fact she could enjoy the music whilst being undisturbed to do her work. This really is a place everyone feels comfortable and I felt at ease whilst deliberating over the menu. With the warm breeze blowing through the door and the atmosphere chilled, but lively I was soon talking to other local diners and felt part of the party.
Although I knew what I wanted, the waiter was quite helpful in pointing out which tapas worked together. The resulting order came quickly and well presented, but the taste was nothing short of sensational. The meat was very high quality and had character without being overpowering. This is not food to be scoffed, it is a treat to savour, which I did. Two tapas is more than enough, so while the price for each dish looks expensive the overall bill is reasonable and thoroughly justified.
So what is the Highbury Arts Club, for sure it's Highbury, certainly the food, décor and music are all art, but the real art is the combination of a walk in bar, with the option of great food, and if so inclined interesting company. The creation is a vibe rarely achieved and I am thankful for living so close.
Food + drink: 4
Nice location in a cafe style, small bar, with the emphasis being on small – there is probably room for 20 diners max here and that is pushing it. The menu is very limited here too, with only about 8-10 dishes but the good news is that food is tasty and fresh. The bad news is that is is tiny. The calamari for 6 quid was miniscule as was the chorizo and six dishes between two people was nowhere near enough. Fifty quid between two with a bottle of wine was not overly expensive, but when you factor in how little we had it's getting on for pricey, which is a shame as the food is pretty good and should be a good draw.
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