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George IV, Kentish Town

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user reviews of the George IV, Kentish Town

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

Lots of greenery going on at the exterior walls but inside it is a standard London boozer. No ales on only keg but this once standard type of backstreet boozer is becoming an endangered species - especially in trendy NW5.
Snarling_Mallard - 13 Oct 2018 23:56
Have been coming here for 20 years and still haven't plucked up the courage to chat up the most attractive bar person in north London. You've noticed I've avoided talking about the beer and ambiance, which is strictly average. But the clientele is true Kentish Town and deserves your custom for that reason alone. Family legend holds that my Granddad attempted to 'nick' a car from outside this hostelry after leaving a wedding reception held here in the early 50's. Luckily he was too drunk to gain entry. A proud moment for us all.
theeducator - 9 Jan 2014 01:13
Stunning exterior to this boozer. Visited on a relatively quiet Thursday night when one bunch of regulars were happily chatting about a recent Arsenal match whilst another had a humorous debate on the merits of Margate over Alicante. Definite regulars place given its back street location but the friendly Irish landlord makes an effort to make everyone welcome. Good selection of ales, which were very well kept. The interior is dark and largely oak but this adds to the back street feel of the place.

QueensParker - 10 Oct 2013 01:17
A classic backstreet boozer with, I feel, the most striking frontage of any pub in London. (and I’m not into gardening / flowers so to say that really is remarkable)

We stopped in for a lunchtime pint and the interior is really cosy with small table lamps and you get a warm homely feeling as you walk in. It's quite dark inside and that adds to the ambience. However I'm a pretty laid back and friendly bloke but as we walked in the lady behind the bar had a look of "Oh no, strangers, what are they doing in here" plastered all over her face which wasn't the most friendly welcome and if she had smiled I think her face might have cracked. That said the two locals at the bar paid us no interest and otherwise it seemed a friendly enough sort of place.

We sat outside and it was nice to watch the world go by. Different types of clientele came and went from the table next to us so good to see that it attracts different cross sections of the community.

I didn't have an ale (it was hot so ice cold lager was the order of the day) but I’ll definitely return, especially in the winter to cosy up in such a warm haven.

AlistairVonLion - 21 Aug 2013 14:47
it's a fine pub. though I no longer live in the area I have a number of family anecdotes relating to this pub that bring me back on a regular basis. Some staff have been there for years and add to the atmosphere of the place. Having said that I rarely have more than a pint here while I read my paper and reminisce.
theeducator - 19 Jun 2013 22:57
Nice exterior and not bad inside with lamps on every table. Food was ok and reasonably priced. Real ale is no longer available. So i had to have Guinness, which was good. Have to mark it down for the lack of real ale.
rpf1955 - 1 Jun 2013 19:08
I like this pub. Tucked out of the way and smothered with ivy, the George is a distinctive, yet classic London pub. High ceilings and interesting decor within, the landlord and punters are friendly and the drinks reasonably priced.
Richard_ReadingFC - 28 Jan 2013 14:37
Lovely little local boozer. Popped in here on a Tuesday late afternoon and found a handful of regulars chatting away, and the landlady berating one of them for not getting off his arse for her when the ice cream van came by (it was a bloody hot day). All a very friendly atmosphere, and the beer was fine, and all was well with the world.
cid - 24 Sep 2012 22:11
Lovely cosy pub off the main road of Kentish Town. Friendly staff and always a decent pint. Used to be great to watch the football in but they need to sort the projector out!
Rosie84 - 1 Jun 2012 15:02
An interesting back street boozer, notable for the foliage which cascades down over the ground floor's exterior almost to the point of covering it. It's also a reasonable place to go for a quiet drink if you want to get away from the Kentish Town strip.
Oasthouse - 23 Dec 2010 01:37
spent lots of time in this pub in 1971/72 but it looks so different! no greenery at all. looking to find friends who went to london college and lived in tufnell pk (71) and kentish town (72). anyone remember noreen who was a barmaid there?
joannnewyork - 12 Aug 2010 16:04
I am Sheila Thomas nee Dowling Daughter of Johnny Dowling who was landlord along with my mother Gladys Dowling from 1939 and held the license for 40 years. I was married in 1960 and had my wedding reception in the main reception room of the George. My son was born in the pub during a party for the express dairy. 2 of my sisters were born above the pub and my Irish father finally died there. it was a wonderful place to live. Even during the war when we were bombed out several times! I have just celebrated my golden wedding anniversary and hope to visit the pub this month and hope it is as good as it was many years ago!
sheilathomas - 9 Aug 2010 16:42
It was quite a pleasant surprise to see this beautiful-looking pub on my walk to work for the first time. After a month or two I plucked up the courage to go in (being in a location split between residential streets, estates and industrial yards I didn't know what sort of welcome to expect!), and was glad that I had. The interior was unusual, with posters of artwork against the otherwise traditional backdrop, and little electric lamps on every table. I was a little disappointed that there was no ale, so I opted for a premium lager, and sat amongst the ivy jungle that covers the outside.

Being such a little gem of a pub, I naturally approved and eventually persuaded some friends to go there, and everyone seemed to like it. The barmaid that always seems to be there when I go in is very competent, remembering what drinks you've had, etc. It is definitely worth putting in a bit of effort to convince people (and when they start walking past the industrial estates on the way, they may need some fairly strong persuading) to opt for this pub, rather than the overpriced gastro-tinged nonsense that otherwise dominates Kentish Town Road. It is a 5-minute (briskish) walk off the main road, and definitely worth seeking out. I personally recommend "blackmailing" people to visit, with the promise of a trip to Kentish Town City Farm up the road.
jacobross1 - 20 Feb 2010 19:23
Superbly traditional back street pub, a short walk away from Kentish Town High Road. The exterior, with its walls bedecked in flowers and the George IV inscribed globe lamps beckon the passing visitor inside. The interior does not disappoint - a fine wood panelled interior with pictures and paintings everywhere. It's a cosy comfortable carpeted interior with the type of warm interior that makes you want to linger.

On my recent Saturday afternoon visit, the pub was quietish with just a few locals catching up with the football scores on a large drop down screen. A small TV at the far end of the pub was showing horse racing. I formed the view that this was a real community local - but more than happy to welcome the occasional passing stranger who manages to find the place, either by design or accident.

Yes, there's no real ale, but, in all other respects, this is what back street pubs should be like and I'd happily linger here again awhile - even with a pint of John Smiths Extra Smooth.

It's a real gem - do try and seek it out
JohnBonser - 2 Feb 2010 17:24
My all time favourite little pub.
Perfect on Sunday afternoons watching the football (be sure to get there early as it can get pretty busy)

I often pop in during the week for a quiet drink with my friends. Staff are always friendly, and being a regular, have already started pouring my drink when I walk in the door.

There's always somewhere to sit and our usual table is generally always free. Perfect if you want to be out on a friday or satuday, but only want a quiet drink.

The only fault is the toilets which could do with a little make-over and I've heard scary things about the state of the mens!

Lucyleftfoot - 13 Jan 2010 13:22
Great little boozer. Friendly staff and regulars. Marvellous for a natter and a cheap pint (or 2). Also good for watching football. It is a hidden gem indeed.
Stroppy74 - 7 Jan 2010 16:57
This place really is a picture, even when seen after dark under street lighting. The exterior all seems slightly implausible, somehow, but the inside is also very interesting. It retains a very traditional feel, but just enough money has been spent on the furniture, fittings and decorations to create a warm atmosphere despite the high ceiling. Staff and customers seemed friendly enough too, despite it being far enough off the beaten track that they probably don't get many casual visitors in. As others have noted, this pub would rate very highly, if only they made use of those two handpumps round the side of the bar...
rpadam - 5 Dec 2009 12:04
Off the beaten path but a great little pub. As previous reviewers have pointed out there is a lack of real ales though. Good service inside although the staff were quite astounded when I opted to pay for my beer with a card! Definitely worth putting the footwork in and if you are after a nice relaxing drink away from the hustle and bustle then this is the place for you
Beastman - 4 Sep 2009 19:05
Located deep in the morass of back streets north of Prince of Wales Road in Kentish Town, the George IV is the kind of pub that you would be unlikely to happen on by chance. And that's a pity because the pub is something of a hidden gem. The most noteworthy feature is, as can be seen, the tremendous exterior, completely bedecked by flowers, which looks lovely and is obviously someone's pride and joy. The interior is very traditional and unspoilt; rather dark as others have said, but pleasant none the less. The pub was busy with a varied mix of locals on the weekday afternoon I happened by. The service was welcoming and friendly. The big weak spot is that the pub doesn't serve real ale, which is a great shame, because apart from that it's a very decent place. It serves a basic pub grub menu at very reasonable prices: a decent-sized cheese and pickle sandwich set me back �2.10, which is cheaper than most sandwich shops would do it. I'd definitely return here.
grecian - 21 Aug 2009 17:08
This is one of those back street boozers that hundreds of people see everyday as they pass on the elevated North London line (Overground) but hardly anyone walks past unless they live on the same road or are maybe off to the industrial park. This explains why I am only the 6th reviewer to comment on this place in over 5 years and the first for over 2.5 years. It is a shame as I think this is a great pub, even if though it doesn�t serve any real ale.

The pub was fairly busy when I visited as the Arsenal v Chelsea kick-off was impending, but there was still plenty of room to sit away from the screens and I was served as soon as I got to the bar. I found the locals to be extremely friendly and I was involved in some light hearted banter with a couple of them before my Guinness had been poured.

I will make a point of returning here when I�m next in the area.
Strongers - 20 Apr 2009 14:23
In an area of boarded up shops and endless graffiti, the first sight of the George IV is like coming across an oasis in the desert. The first thing you notice is the jungle of plants, ivy, palms and creepers that would keep an horticulturalist happy for hours. Beneath this excess foliage lies a typical Victorian corner pub however the interior is every bit as fascinating as the exterior. Floor to ceiling is plastered with pictures and painting of all sizes and subjects. The high ceiling is home to a couple of fans and is propped up by a couple of thin pillars in front of the bar. A rack of wines sits atop the bar frame. As one would expect, there is not a lot of natural light due the jungle outside and the grand but heavy curtains but the internal lighting is subdued and tasteful. The presence of a small table lamp on each table is a nice touch and the carpeted bar is very sedate and comfortable. There are 2 TV�s and a couple of fruit machines / games machines. Perfect? Not quite. The big downer here is the lack of Real Ales. There are 2 redundant hand pumps at the rear of the bar so they obviously did sell it at some point. The food is also rather basic food, mainly sandwiches. And finally, as a previous reviewer has pointed out, the gents do need some serious attention. A lot of care and effort has gone into turning what would be a mundane ordinary boozer into something a bit special and it is worth making the detour to visit even though the locality is fairly run down. With a bit of attention to the food, drink and toilets, this place would be hard to fault.
RogerB - 29 Aug 2006 16:31
Nice quiet pub run by an Irsih man, the gents do smell, but not because they are dirty but because of 100 years of urine! Would recommend it for a quiet few pints.
anonymous - 6 Jul 2005 16:29
After my comment on this pub from 23/01/04 I have now visited this delightful and not-so-easy-to-find (10 mins from Kentish Town tube via various sidestreets) pub about a dozen times. It's comfortable, serves good beer and is never too crowded to watch the football (in contrast to the Assembly Rooms near Kentish Town tube). It has excellent outdoor seating on a summer's day but I dare say that the toilets haven't been cleaned since the 60s. Possibly part of the charm. In short, a great place to kick back with a mate for a comfortable and undisturbed session.
Paladino - 22 Mar 2005 23:38
I've just moved away from Kentish Town where the George was my local for 2 years and I bloody miss it!! I've moved to Brixton where you just can't find a decent local. The George has a fantastic manager in the name of Dan, keeps up appearances shows the sport discretionarily ie if you want it its on but if no-ones watching its on mute, traditional and friendly... I could wax lyrical forever, but if ever I could transport a pub to Brixton it would be the George 10 out of 10!!!
Spa - 22 Nov 2004 00:08
This was a very friendly pub indeed back in 1983 when, during blistering hot July I paid a visit for a coke (I was 17!!) played a few impromptu pieces on the piano, and got my drink free plus a quid as well.

Doubtless the staff and customers must have changed since then, and I will have to pay another visit soon - watch this space.
lad_newton - 30 Jan 2004 19:25
I have only just discovered it while passing in a taxi and am yet to go inside. But from the outside it is a beautiful, ivy-covered (must be unusual for north london) pub and if the outside is any indication, then it could very well be a gem. I can't wait to visit it and hopefully read what others have to say about it too.
Paladino - 23 Jan 2004 21:40

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