The Alma

59 Newington Green Road , London, N1 4QU

SquareMeal Review of The Alma

Walls covered in vintage publicity stills; film directors’ chairs sporting legendary names; red moquette flip-up seats; cut-outs of Monroe, Chaplin and co: boozers last looked like this back in Miss Jean Brodie’s prime (circa 1969, we reckon). In truth, The Alma’s quirky, movie-themed upgrade makes a charming change from the ubiquitous corporate pubs-by-numbers design. Budding Midnight Cowboys can load up until late on Theakston’s Old Peculier, Windsor & Eton ales or Old Rosie Cloudy cider from a decent range of keg and cask brews; if you prefer grape to grain, there are 10 wines by the glass as well as bottles of Lanson Champagne. In the evening and weekends, the pub dispenses Bangkok street food such as tom yum soup, spring rolls and curries for the cost of a West End cinema ticket when Austin Powers first hit our screens.

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Nearby Tube/Rail Stations

Canonbury Station 283m

Dalston Kingsland Station 467m

Address

Address: 59 Newington Green Road , London N1 4QU

Area: Islington Barnsbury

Opening times

Mon-Thurs 5-11pm Fri-Sun 12N-12pm (Sun -10.30pm)

Nearby Landmarks

Rio Cinema 833m

The Tower Theatre 886m

Details

Telephone: 0203 620 7516

Website:

Cuisine: Pubs

7.0

Food & Drink: 8.0

Service: 3.0

Atmosphere: 8.0

Value: 6.0

Food & Drink: 4.0

Service: 1.0

Atmosphere: 4.0

Value: 3.0

Inje 09 May 2010

We went to the Alma for a farewell party for a friend of ours, and it proved to be a good venue because those who wanted to eat could do so, while others just came later to join us for a drink. We had the baked salmon and the pork chop – both substantial and well-cooked and served (sweet potatoes that came with the chop a particular highlight). We also enjoyed a bottle of sparkling New Zealand wine (one of several Kiwi items available for purchases). An enjoyable evening, however, was had in spite of the service – first, we were given the wrong food; second, we had to wait ages to order drinks; and third, after we asked for the bill we actually waited an hour – AN HOUR! – for it to be supplied. We were, at that point, the only people left in the restaurant. The bill included a 12.5% service charge which we declined to pay, which elicited an expression of disgust from the bartender – rather than, say, a query about what had gone wrong or an apology, which added insult to injury. However, perhaps she was already in a bad mood because of the manager, who had spent the evening loudly cursing at her and her other colleague. Nevertheless, we'll be back. Perhaps in disguise because they probably hate us for our non-payment of the service charge.