44 Barnsbury Street,
(btwn Liverpool Rd & Thornhill Rd),
+44 207 619 0348
View bar's website
Mon-Sat 11am-11pm, Sun noon-10:30pm
The Draper's Arms was gastro-fied back in November 2001 with the renovation of what had previously been a disused, derelict, double-fronted Georgian building at the north end of Lonsdale Square in the suburban back streets of Islington. More recently (2009) partners Nick Gibson and Ben Maschler, son of the restaurant critic Fay, have taken over with an ex-St John chef in the kitchen - no pressure then.
Step over the trapdoors as you enter (don't worry, they're safe) directly into the bar with baby blue walls, mismatched old furnishings and mirrors hung over the fireplaces. To the rear lies a gem of a secluded garden. On the first floor lies a more formal dining room.
The food offering runs from simple snacks such as pork pies to a substantial contemporary British offering and on the whole lives up to its pedigree.
The Drapers remains as much a boozer as it is a gastro pub with 3 traditional ales on draught, a good and eclectic spirits offering and an international wine list with 13 wines by the glass.