The other weekend a friend persuaded me to venture up the Northern Line for a few crafty ales at The Southampton Arms in Kentish Town. Not really knowing what to expect, I dully made my way there, beer tokens at the ready (no cards accepted).
I was greeted by a quirky local drinking establishment with a friendly friday night buzz in the air. The place was busy without being packed, but we were lucky to grab a pew (literally a church pew) tucked in the corner. The folky style music and shabby wooden interiors creates a lively cosy atmosphere which successfully treads the line for a place to enjoy a few Friday night beverages whilst also being a good place to load up on good beer before heading on somewhere more lively.
The beer itself is only sourced from independent breweries constantly rotated and served by knowledgeable staff, happy to let you to take a sample before diving into an unknown ale. I had a Redemption Hopspur Bitter and the Belleville Battersea Brownstone, which were both delicious.
The unpretentious yet eclectic mix of genuine local drinkers and trendy younger crowd together with the great beers and ciders and epic meat snacks make it a worthy pub to visit if you are a beer hunter or looking for great London pubs.
If you are in the area, please do check out The Bull and Last, which is a cosy gastropub just up the road. More of a foodie pub than a drinking venue but nevertheless, the beer offering is fantastic. Beers at the time were from Tiny Rebel, Bristol Beer Factory and Five Points on keg and bottle.
The Southampton Arms
139 Highgate Road, London N5 1LE