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Great Northern Railway Tavern, Hornsey

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user reviews of the Great Northern Railway Tavern, Hornsey

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

Due to bullcrap internal politics I am pulling out of this site with my team from November 4th. Been an amazing two years and a pleasure to serve those of you who have chosen to come and support us. I am hoping to stay in the area, have my eye on some local sites that could do with some TLC. Watch this space!

Tony Lennon
ajlennon1980 - 30 Sep 2013 18:53
This is an amazing pub. The decor is beautiful. There are a lot of events on at the moment which are really drawing the punters in. It seems after a dodgy few years the place is really turning round. Choice of beers is a bit different, but that sometimes makes a refreshing change.

I didn't eat, but I've heard that the food is really good. The menu reads nice and has a "lesser options but more fresh" feel about it. Certainly no Wetherspoons this!

Really exciting place for the area. These are the sort of pubs we REALLY don't want to lose.
tuzapicabit - 5 Oct 2012 22:39
Finally got in here for a beer last week. The sun was out and the quiz was on, so it was busy, but service was friendly and the beer was good. Unfortunately I got there too late to get a place in the garden, but the fact it has a garden when the Salisbury doesn't will definitely be drawing me back over the summer months. Once there is a few more ales on offer this will be a great pub.
joffle - 28 May 2012 12:54
Makes a huge difference to have someone that knows what they are doing in charge at the GNRT.

St Austell Tribute on great form when I visited and Landlord on as well.

This is now a very good pub that is well on the way to being fantastic.
Denny - 18 Mar 2012 15:32
This pub has been crying out for some TLC for yeats.
In the past the beer was very hit and miss lets hope thats changing.
Lovely olde pub could be one of the best but I see the dreaded `Punch` own it, bloody shame that as they are to pubs what Iran is to world peace !!
Wish the new guys all the best.
ThePilgrim - 15 Mar 2012 10:31
Awesome news!
joffle - 14 Mar 2012 22:51
Hi all,

As for the below comments yes it is true that i have taken over the GNRT. I turned down a very good opportunity to take on this place as I can see huge potential here.
It's a beautiful venue that has offered poorly kept/chosen beers, I will be changing that, but please be aware of the fact that the pub is not a freehouse, it's tied to punch. However, I have been able to source some very good beers through them and you can expect the offering to improve very soon.
You can also expect to see a beer garden, better menu and some new faces behind the bar, the old team ...... well, i'll refrain from airing my views on here.

The GNRT will be the pub it deserves to be very soon. Leave it my hands for a few weeks.

Tweeters can follow us on @TheGNRTavern.

Thanks all, Tony Lennon.
ajlennon1980 - 6 Mar 2012 12:33
I hope that is true! This place could be brilliant if it serves the right beer.
joffle - 5 Mar 2012 12:33
Apparently Mr Tony Lennon ex Euston Tap is taking over here, that, hopefully, will lead to a change in direction.....
elsie_pop - 4 Mar 2012 21:28
I have to agree with the previous couple of posters. The new owners have done a fantastic job restoring this beautiful pub, and the service is good, but the pub is really let down by the choice of beer on offer; neither Pride nor Greene King IPA are especially exciting offerings, and they don't stock a wheat beer, which seems a bit of an oversight.

This is a far nicer building than the Compasses, and yet we always end up across the street on account of the real ales on offer. We've popped our heads in a couple of times since our first visit, but sacked it off when we've seen the (lack of) ales on offer. Shame.
Haringey_White - 12 Jul 2011 15:49
I went here the other night with some friends and we absolutely loved it! Not only was it beautiful inside after refurbishment but the staff were really friendly too. Too many places now people don't seem to be bothered to serve you and its nice when they do and with a smile.. We had a bottle of Gavi between 4 of us and I got a Tavern Burger which was really nice! As for the choice of beer my friends were happy with it. This would be a great place to host an event.. will be back soon!
MaryHazel - 12 Jun 2011 16:50
I agree with elsie pop. This pub seriously needs some good real ale if it is to survive and I only hope they get the message, you would think they would as they have mirrors on the walls depicting better times when a greater choice of local and British ale was on tap than cheap nasty lagers and cider.
What potentially could be a great pub is let down by its choice of beer and I doubt whether your average casual lager/cider drinker would be pleased to walk in and find Carling, Stella and Strongbow on tap. Better suited for your teenage lager louts that shouldnt and hopefully wont be attracted to this place. What makes it more incredible is how beautiful a bar it really is and full marks for this. But please please please sort out the drinks - for reference pop over the road to the 3 Compasses (your competition that does well) and see the great choices they have.
RATcommander - 9 Jun 2011 17:24
If they don't up the ante on the real ale front this place won't last, which would be a shame as they have done a lovely job on the restoration. Just two hand-pumps, London Pride and GK IPA, of which only Pride was available. Food was on the pricey side.
elsie_pop - 3 Jun 2011 14:42
My first visit co-incided with a recent renovation and relaunch. Wow... its a beautiful big building with amazing original features. The wine list was long with plenty by the glass (and the ones I tried were very drinkable!) and the menu looked amazing. No pool table or screens as listed on the description above - just a really nice atmosphere, friendly staff and a garden area that even whilst still being finished allowed us to enjoy a bit of evening sunshine. We'll definitely be going back!!!
deborah1 - 1 Jun 2011 14:29
Good old fashioned no nonsense boozer. Good guinness
geraint17 - 19 Oct 2010 22:56
This pub is housed in a lovely old building but looks tired and unloved at the moment. The range of beers was a bit hit and miss on my visit with most things being unavailable on tap. It was ok but nothing to shout about - what a shame as it looks so promising.
jenny200 - 28 Jun 2010 15:14
P.S. The pub now serves cask ale, further to review from Stronger on 1/09/2009.
Harry_Callaghan - 8 Oct 2009 01:32
From an aesthetic point of view, probably the finest pub in North London, from a drinkers point of view one of the best. Joe, the boss, makes a point of introducing himself to all customers and helps to make a very welcoming atmosphere, along with the friendly locals (which I count myself among!) . The chef serves up some of the best thai food this side of Bangkok and it is all reasonably priced, where else can you get a thai green curry for £5.00? The words that sum it up are the words on the pub's flyer " A Traditional London Pub, With
A Warm Irish Welcome". If you don't believe anything said here come and make your own mind up!
Harry_Callaghan - 8 Oct 2009 01:31
This is a good looking pub with the bar area housing a pool table on a raised level and I counted four plasma screens that have the capability of showing Sky Sports. There is a larger room towards the rear of the pub which has a plasma screen on the wall behind a small stage area that I would imagine being used for live music nights. Past this room is a small conservatory that leads to a small sunken garden that is full of creepers and entertains a barbeque. There is also a Thai kitchen attached, but I did not try the food so I cannot comment.

There is no real ale and Staropramen is the only offering other than standard draught products. I thought that the barmaid was a little frosty, but the governor seemed polite enough.

I liked it in here and I would return again if in the area.
Strongers - 1 Sep 2009 21:55
No real ale on, nor any handpumps offering the possibility of something decent to drink on some future occasion. There are some original features in this Victorian ex-gin palace, but there are no other redeeming features as far as I can see. But, because I needed something to eat I decided to have a half of Stella and a Thai lunch. Got the Stella OK but there didnít seem to be a way to get something to eat other than trying to snag the chef as he hurtled to and from the kitchen with other peopleís meals. It seems the bar staff play absolutely no part in the food process Ė itís like having two businesses on the same premises. I suppose thatís the way it is now, but losing business because a hungry punter canít get something to eat in a pretty empty pub canít be good for business. I wonít be coming back.
RexRattus - 22 Mar 2009 12:10
OMG! "sad old men" and "mothers on benefits" in the same pub! I hope you contacted Social Services immediately? Obviously an assualt on your highbrow sensibilities!
dalglish - 14 Oct 2008 15:28
OMG! Went in here for a quick pint prior to going for a meal across the road in the Spanish restaurant. We walked in and very rapidly did a quick-about-turn. What a DUMP! It stank of stale smoke depite the smoking ban many months ago. It was a shadow of it's former self many years ago - a real disgrace from the days when it used to have live bands. I really hope it closes down and either re-opens as a successful live musc pub or..... gets turned into a block of falts. Quite frankly this is a pb that can only be dscribed as one whorelies on sad old male drunks and benefit single parent mothers on benefits - such a shame to have to make a living ouf of these sad sad people
elllie - 6 Jul 2008 02:49
what a disgusting dirty pubs and the drug problems in the bar are so noticable its unreal- sort it out !
hornseyite - 21 Dec 2007 09:10
Great pub and best selection of beer on the High Street. It is worth a visit just for the interior!
Christabelle - 7 Sep 2007 11:08
Great interior... Very much a locals' pub but plenty of space for locals & non-locals alike. Run-of-the-mill range of lagers & Guinness; if you're looking for real ale this is not the place for you.
dpv - 19 Jun 2007 13:38
Nice pub. Always had a warm welcome here. It's a bit intense when the football is on, but on other nights it's a good boozer.
bertee - 24 Dec 2006 19:29
One of my favourite pub interiors, and does good Guiness, although could be friendlier. Worth a visit, as is the improbably cheap and tasty Kansas Chicken over the Road.
Lazmac - 27 Nov 2006 23:50
great little pub, bar staff really friendly.
had some good nites with the karaoke in there.
drumandmonkeyfan - 22 Mar 2006 16:14
Largely unknown gem of a pub. Well worth the extra trip.
seasiderMM - 28 Feb 2006 20:59
A beautiful little pub which has escaped unsympathetic moderisation. Tables out front on the street and a lovely little conservatory and a concrete beer "garden" out back. Excellent Thai food served during lunch and dinner by the very friendly Joe. The bar staff are often quite moody and the clientele sometimes a bit stern but nothing "worrisome" in my humble opinion. With a slightly friendlier welcome this pub would have grand possibilities - as it is, can be a great place to visit if you are happy to bring your own good company.
Savagepink - 24 Aug 2005 13:41
This pub has a fantastic old gin palace in the back room, complete with decorative ceiling. In truth it's a bit ropey and the clientelle are slightly worrisome, but frankly that only adds to its appeal. During Euro 2004 they gave out free sandwiches and chips. Bonus!
Ian - 22 Sep 2004 19:58
extraordinaary architecture..a domed great room. also a pool table bar. very comfortable at back. secluded little garden could seat 20.fine beer.friendly staff. Thai restaurant service also do proper roasts.
saint - 10 Jun 2004 16:42

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