The Marquess Tavern

32 Canonbury Street , London, N1 2TB

  • Marquess Tavern 2013
  • Marquess Tavern 2013

SquareMeal Review of The Marquess Tavern

Sitting in state next to the New River Path, this handsome Victorian hostelry is now in the hands of Young’s Brewery, who have added warmth and quirkiness in the shape of dangling lampshades and references to author George Orwell, who used to drink here when he lived nearby. Knowledgeable, friendly staff are on hand to guide visitors through a menu that promotes the British cause and mixes pub classics (haddock and chips, burgers, bangers and mash) with more refined seasonal fare. A sophisticated dish of scallops with pickled beetroot, blistered grapes and raisin purée might be followed by Hampshire pheasant with parsnip crisps, while dessert might bring sticky toffee pudding spiked with ginger. The style-led wine list includes plenty by the glass, and there are Young’s brews on tap, along with regular guest ales and numerous bottled craft beers.

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7.2

Food & Drink: 7.2

Service: 6.4

Atmosphere: 7.6

Value: 7.4

Food & Drink: 4.0

Service: 4.0

Atmosphere: 3.0

Value: 3.0

Jane L. 14 October 2010

I had not know about The Marquess Tavern for long before finding out the disappointing news about the prix fixe menu coming to an end!! Finally I found the bargain of a life-time and then it's gone! Despite being a bit gutted I still go in with friends to take part in the weekly pub-quiz which is a great place to get to know some locals in the area! Just the other night I tried the new menu, which is now much bigger. I had the bangers and mash – But these are no normal bangers and mash, the sausages and venison not pork, the mash is really creamy and the gravy is delicious. I know bangers and mash is not a complex meal but The Marquess Tavern really have perfected this British favourite – I very strongly recommend it to anyone in the area with a rumble in their belly!!

Food & Drink: 4.0

Service: 3.0

Atmosphere: 4.0

Value: 5.0

Azim K. 14 September 2010

Proud to call it my local. A friendly, old fashioned country pub in Canonbury that offers great food and drink. It's hard to convince people now-a-days that a £12 two course set menu including lamb or steak as a main course is any good – it is easy to imagine the meat being similar to an old shoe for that price in London!! I can only give you my honesty – the meat is 9 times out of 10 a good cut, the kind of cut you would pay £18 for in Central London!! The side orders are generous – maybe a little heavy on the butter at times (at least my wife can't tell me off if it's already there though!!). Compliments to the chef! The bar promotes it's large array of wines and whiskeys – unfortunately this is not always true, they are sometimes not fully stocked but I put that down to the long-stay regulars! As for the service don't get me wrong this is not a mitchelin star establishment; the staff are casual in both their dress and their manner – everyone's friend, making you feel as welcome every time. I recommend it to anyone in the area who loves a good old English eat!!

Food & Drink: 4.0

Service: 4.0

Atmosphere: 4.0

Value: 5.0

Anonymous A. 19 August 2010

I went to the Marquess Tavern with old school friends who have quite recently moved to the area. None of us had been in before but with it being so close to their new house it seemed like a good place to start!! As you walk through the doors you immediately feel an escape to the countryside with the old styled, dark-wooden bar and the easy-to-spot regulars chatting at the bar. The furniture is fantastic, I wouldn't mind stealing a table for my house!! We were fortunate enough to be able to enjoy the last two hours of sun outside on the pub-bench tables and after sufficiently tasting all the ales built up an appetite to eat inside in the restaurant. The service was very friendly but unfortunately they did not have everything on the menu available that night due to a busy service the night before. We enjoyed the the home-made rustic bread. I had the duck to start which seemed small – maybe because I enjoyed it so much!! I had the liver for my main course which was served with fresh vegetables and a fantastic, creamy sauce. We were all suffiently full after our two courses and had we not drank so much ale would have all had an apple pie each!! – Instead we shared one, it was delicious and puts my mother's to shame!! For the quality we recieved the value was very good. Two courses for £12; duck and liver – this is a price tag you would find next to a pizza and garlic bread. I was very impressed and will be happy to visit my friends again soon or even take some other friends in!

Food & Drink: 1.0

Service: 1.0

Atmosphere: 3.0

Value: 1.0

LT 16 August 2010

I went to the Marquess Tavern this Saturday for mid-afternoon drinks followed by dinner, and couldn't disagree more with the Squaremeal review. For a start, the service was really not up to scratch – yes, the staff were very friendly, but utterly clueless. Our waiter’s description of one of the specials was, cryptically, “ribeye with tomato”. I asked about chips. “Oh yes”, he said. “That's a given.” Of course it is, silly me for expecting him to mention them. We weren't able to establish what the other specials were. I suspect he didn't know himself. Service was glacial. Despite being the only table when we sat down, our starters still took half an hour to come. When they DID eventually turn up they were decidedly underseasoned, the scallops were cold on arrival, the artichoke was tasteless and little helped by something vaguely resembling garlic aioli, and I then had to ask the waiter to clear the plates away after they sat, dirty, on our table for 20 minutes. It took another hour for our mains to arrive. The steaks didn't come with the advertised and requested peppercorn sauce (panic ensued when we asked for it, and it didn't look or taste very peppercorn-y when it eventually turned up). My ‘jus’ was a splash of gravy, which every steak came with regardless of whether you asked for it or the sauce. The steak itself was overcooked (asked for medium rare, got medium well), and although I'm told the beef fillet was good, the chips were soggy, the broccoli watery and the requested ‘horseradish’ turned out to be mayonnaise. The final straw was the bill – it came to more than £50 each between 7 of us for two courses, four bottles of wine and a few beers. The poor service and average food are a real shame, because the pub itself has a warm, welcoming feel to it and the drinks list is excellent. But I think it's just trying to be more than it is capable of and, despite the efforts of the genuinely nice (if inefficient) staff, the experience was a very expensive disappointment. My advice if you fancy a nice gastropub meal? Try the York & Albany.

Food & Drink: 4.0

Service: 3.0

Atmosphere: 3.0

Value: 4.0

Gemma T. 02 July 2010

The Marquess is a deceiving venue – The appearance from outside suggests it is just a pub. Until you go in you wouldn't believe there is a chandelier conservatory dinning room at the back! And you definitely wouldn't believe that the food is better than 80% of what is on offer on Upper Street and at good value. I ordered the steak which was cooked to perfection and served with homemade chips – even the mayonnaise is home-made! As I said it is deceiving and definitely worth a try!

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