The Lock Tavern
When drinking in London, you don’t have to be a wannabe rock star to do it here – but it helps. The Lock is co-owned by electro DJ Jon Carter, who’s friends with all the right people, so the Thursday to Sunday night DJ line-up (eg, Rob da Bank, Erol Alkan, Filthy Dukes) and Next Big Thing live bands – not unknown to play from the tabletops – keep the hip haircut crowd’s hands up in the air. Drinks include Brothers pear cider from Glastonbury and Frulli strawberry beer, while the I’m-only-doing-this-till-I-get-a-record-deal bar staff are able to knock up respectable cocktails too. The Sunday roast is a major draw, while the regular menu features good pub nosh, sarnies and unfeasibly fashionable Square Pies. In fact, this self-described ‘tarted-up boozer’, channelling Camden’s tatty glamour (bare brick walls, big slouchy sofas, and a ‘smokers rule’ roof terrace and garden), is so hip to the beat that there’s now a regulars’ card system operating at the weekend – if you don’t have one, get a head start on the rest of the Lock crowd and aim for Barfly to see the Next NBT bands.