Unfussily gastro, its stylish dark interior buzzes with the after work brigade from the Guardian and other meedja offices. Quality ales, beers and consistently impressive modern British grub. We’ve also had many a birthday bash in its upstairs Manhattan style cocktail bar (quaffable espresso martinis alert) with roof terrace. 24 York Way N1
Somerstown Coffee House
Another hidden spot, this misnamed boozer has an almost leafy terrace out front which gets packed with thirsty office workers. Inside, the dark-panelled interior is spacious enough to find a table – and they host supper clubs upstairs. Six real ale handpulls too. 60 Charlton Street NW1
Star Of King’s
This northern outpost of the Bethnal Green original is similarly arty and aimed at creative locals and students. Decent pub grub and drinks (no surprises in the lager department, however) but it’s more about the late night DJ line-ups in the basement – and, of course, a west-facing sunset terrace overlooking King’s Cross at its most industrial. 126 York Way N1
Despite a perfunctory drinks offering, this tiny bar deserves a mention as it’s been there as long as we can remember. A true 90s “lounge”, down to the dim lighting and scruffy bohemian furniture, it was often the starting point for a night out at Canvas or The Cross, the vast nightclubs that occupied the warehouses around what is now Granary Square. 52 York Way N1
Simmons, with its ace original shop frontage, shouldn’t by rights still be here as rents must be astronomical nowadays. But here it is, a slither of a place more pub than bar that’s packed with studenty character and good value beers, cocktails and happy hours. Quirky and independent; worth hunting out. 32 Caledonian Road N1
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