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can't say I agree with the pub winner either - Earl Haig is a nice looking space, but it's grotty and needs a good clean. the toilets are disgusting.
the queens is in a different class as far as I'm concerned.
plus where the henry reader in that poll? :)
The Earl Haig is more than a pub. They have bent over backwards to support small scale community initiatives, offered space for meetings and put on a lot of top notch bands and other acts. The beers are brilliant and they give the chance to a lot of small scale breweries but without being precious about the whole craft beer thing.
Hats off to Hannah, Adam her predecessor and all her staff.
I'm with David here. Sure the toilets could do with a bit of TLC, but the EH gang currently offer the best night out in Crouch End. The bar staff are wonderful across the board and the food and drinks are brilliant. They're also making great use of their back room recently. They should all be very proud with how the venture is going.
The only downside of the place is it attracts a number of families who are raising their kids free-range. I've had to beat a hasty retreat (to The Queens) on a few occasions due to unsupervised kids screaming around the venue banging into chairs while their folks ignore them. The Maynard has the same problem, but I suppose telling punters to control their kids wouldn't be good for business!
I've stopped going to the Earl Haig because of the kids, which is gutting because it was my dream bar when it first opened. Last time I went, there were just two in there but one was screaming while the other banged randomly on the piano. Unbearable.
These awards are rather meaningless. No Londoner goes to all of the nominated cafes/restaurants etc and makes a considered comparison. Its simply about which venue can persuade the most of its customers to actually record a vote.
Is that not a general rule about awards - either it's the in-crowd patting itself on the back , or a twitter/facebook overdose with the most successfully manipulative the winner. Doesn't mean the winners aren't deserving,
Earl Haig is thankfully, blissfully, UN noisy. Friendly, imaginative, and comfortable.
I'm gonna rescind my earlier comment - I was at the Earl Haig last night and it was a great night out. A good bunch of people there and the music was welcome.
The toilets? Still ropey :)
No soap in the Gents, twist on taps (lovely, not) ...come on EH get yr bogs together!!!
Beam is probably OK if you are a Mum with a buggy, the music in the Queens is usually so loud that you can hardly hear what people are saying. The Three Compasses - not strictly speaking Crouch End - gets my vote
Most of the cafes in Crouch are ok for a coffee but their food is largely over priced mediocrity this includes BEAM and Blue Legume. Best cafe food to be found is at is the Coffee Cake and Haberdashery. Hot Pepper Jelly has a certain charm but it feels like it's run by the losing team on Junior Apprentice.