The Earl of Essex
Inconspicuously located along one of Islington’s placid residential streets, the Earl of Essex, from the outside, doesn’t look like much more than a local’s pub. Inside, though, is another matter: for starters, the beer selection here is serious, with fridges behind the bar, hand pumps and draughts featuring coveted craft pours brewed in London or shipped in from overseas. After something achingly fresh? Peek behind the bar and you’ll find a few petite fermentation tanks – The Earl of Essex also hosts on-site microbrewery Earl’s, and given that these suds don’t exactly have to travel far to get to your glass, you’re guaranteed a good pint. On warm weather days the convivial garden swells with tipplers, while the interior is usually crowded with happy, chattering crowds. Settle in for a few and, when you get hungry, sop it all up with the really rather gourmet menu.