Kings Head Theatre Pub, Islington
24 March 2008
115 Upper Street, London N1 1QN
Oh my word. Theatre pubs are usually quirky, full of thespians, luvvies, you know the kind of thing. You walk in and the smell of the greasepaint hits you. In the Kings Head, the smell of the dirty floor hits you. And if you’re not careful, the barmaid might hit you. This is a really bad pub.
Good pubs pour nearly a pint of Guinness and let it stand for two minutes, after which they top it up. Bad pubs pour your pint in one hit. Really bad pubs, and this is a really bad pub, pour your pint in three hits. It takes forever and it tastes like it has been sitting in the barrel forever. The price of two pints? “Six pounds and eighteen shillings, please”. No really, I’m not making this up, she actually said that. The till she used was one of the old ones that you see on show in very poncy places, with buttons you have to push really hard down on and the price popping up like a little flag above the buttons. The difference is that in most places with such tills, they are there for effect and have an EPOS system sitting behind them. In the Kings Head, they would think EPOS was some kind of disease (which frankly, you could probably catch in their toilets).
Oh God, the toilets. Last cleaned when shillings were legal tender in the UK, they epitomised this delight of a pub. Was I taking part in some Pinteresque take on the paucity of the pub trade in the UK? Nah, it was just some shitty pub. Avoid.