Scotch Egg Challenge 2015

We’re pleased as punch to be amongst a mere eggcupfull of selected finalists in this year’s Scotch Egg Challenge! Read on for the lowdown and come along to cheer us on on the day – Tuesday 20th October from 7.30pm at The Canonbury, Islington.


Our Chorizo and Black Pudding bad boy

Some of London’s leading chefs take to the kitchens with the aim of elevating the humble bar snack to new heights in a cook-off and blind tasting to find the nation’s best Scotch Egg. Having previously taken place at The Ship in Wandsworth, the Scotch Egg Challenge moves to The Canonbury Tavern in Islington for 2015. A must-see (and taste) event for any posh foodie fan, the competition sees entrants judged on three categories – taste, texture and appearance – and there’s enough scotch eggs for the audience to feed their faces for free. Previous finalists have included the Harwood ArmsDuck and WaffleThe Modern Pantry and Cinnamon Soho, with outlandish combinations including chorizo and fennel, curries smoked haddock and wild boar, heart and liver, black pudding and also vegetarian. With a big screen showing all the action live from the kitchen, this is a truly egg-cellent event.

Where The Canonbury Tavern21 Canonbury Place, Wandsworth, Islington, London N1 2NS
When Tuesday 20th October 2015, 7.30pm
Joel Scotch Egg Chef

Our scotch egg aficionado, Joel


“One of the most extraordinary things about our city it its sheer extent and diversity, and all those funny little places that are totally magical,” says Boris Johnson. “So nominate the one that you think is particularly lovely, charming, enchanted in the #LoveLondonAwards.”

We couldn’t agree more. It’s those great little places of – as Boris says – ‘cultural importance’ that make London so flipping wonderful. To celebrate this, Time Out are asking you to vote for the favourites in your area.

The Grafton been nominated in the Pubs & Bars category for Kentish Town & Tufnell Park! We believe the Great British Pub is a true stalwart of cultural importance and we hope that we represent the best of them. If you agree, we’d be tickled pink to receive your vote. Voting is easy peasy:

STEP 1: Visit
STEP 2: Select ‘Kentish Town & Tufnell Park’
STEP 3: Choose the ‘Pubs & Bars’ Category
STEP 4: Select The Grafton!

If you’re feeling it, you can also vote for your favourites in the Restaurants, Shops, Cafe’s & Coffee Shops categories too. Happy voting folks :)

Birthday Beer Fest goes Bavarian

Blimey, we’re about to reach the ripe old age of 3. As ever, we’ll be celebrating with a  weekend-long Beer Festival and this year in honour of Oktoberfest we’re hosting a Bavarian-themed beer hall upstairs, with a plethora of delicious German beers to sample. Entry is free all weekend and, as usual, a host of amusements will appear. Join us!



OFM Awards – could we be in the running?

Now in their 12th year, the Observer Food Monthly Awards reward the best in British food and drink. To be recognised by these awards is a real honour for any Food & Drink establishment not only because it carries a respected title but, crucially, because it’s voted for by the people who really matter- YOU. Vote now.

We very much hope that you all enjoy what we do here at The Grafton, so we’re hoping some of you might put our name forward in a category or two.

Please do vote in as many categories you feel we’re worthy of, but we’ve made a couple of suggestions based on the things we reckon we do well.

With the launch of The Grafton Kitchen back in February this year, we’ve tried hard to ensure we offer choices that are affordable but don’t compromise on taste and quality, such as our smalls and daily specials. We reckon our most notable ‘cheap eat’ would be our permanent Steak, House Butter, Chips and Watercress dish, which starts at just £8.

We’re constantly working on making The Grafton a great place to be. It all starts with our team, who we encourage to create a fantastic atmosphere right from the very moment you set foot in the door by being friendly, welcoming and helpful. Next it’s the improvements and additions we continually make to our beautiful building to create inviting, comfortable spaces to be in. And lastly, but by no means least, we do our best to create a food and drinks range that offers something for everybody. We have 8 hand pumps rotating award-winning ales, local craft beers on tap and in bottles, ciders, world wines, house spritzes, a range of soft drinks and teas and coffees.

To us, Sunday lunch means a Roast so that’s all we do on Sundays. Add in some tasty, regularly-changing starters and puddings and a proper roast for veggies (no sloppy mushroom risottos here), we reckon our Sundays are tip top.

The Grafton Kitchen is open!

After more than two years hosting some of London’s most celebrated street food vendors as pop-ups and residencies, we are tickled pink to finally launch our very own in-house kitchen. Our food is influenced by the best of our street food experiences, but it also brings in some of the classic British pub fare we love, as well as offering options for healthy eaters and dietary needs like veganism and gluten intolerance. We call it Street-Meets-Pub.

We’re so giddy with excitement it appears we’ve actually lost the plot because we’ve knocked a whopping 50% off lunch this week to celebrate, from Monday until Thursday 5th March, 12-3pm. Check out the menus here. Happy eating!

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The Bell And Brisket to be the final street-food pop-up at The Grafton

Over the last two years we’ve opened up our kitchen to an array of London’s most celebrated street-food operators, ranging from one or two day stints from the likes of Alley Katsu, Deeneys, Tongue & Cheek and Dosa Deli, to long-term residencies from Lucky Chip, The Fat Butcher and Texas Joe’s BBQ.

It’s been wonderful to be able to provide you lot with such a wide range of food choices. Hosting pop-ups has meant we’ve been able to try out different cuisines and celebrate some of the incredible street food London has to offer.

With the Texas Joe’s BBQ residency drawing to a close on January 18th, we’re now ready to launch our very own fresh food kitchen, which will draw on influences from some of the best street food pop-ups we’ve hosted, as well as incorporating some traditional pub fare and healthy options in a ‘street-meets-pub’ menu.

Before we do however, a final street-food pop-up from The Bell and Brisket seems only fitting to bring our two-year pop-up run to a close. The venerated salt beef maestro will hit The Grafton on 21st January, staying for 4 weeks. Twitter: @brisketbel

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If you’re not already familiar with The Bell and Brisket’s delights you’re in for a treat; owner Bel Shapiro puts it best ‘It’s salt beef but not as you know it. We’ve modernised a classic deli dish and messed around with some crazy pickle combos to produce addictive fillings for our Brick Lane bagels and unusual black rye buns, baked locally by Carmellis. Our beef is British and grass fed, our pickles are home made or bought from Hackney producer Vadasz Deli. At the Grafton we’ll be offering a broader offer than our usual bagel menu, with new dishes such as hot smoked Mackerel and Brisket dripping chips’

Alongside The Bell & Brisket menu will be a brand new, hot dessert brand Toastess

As Bel says, ‘You should never choose a favourite dessert.. You should choose two! TOASTESS takes a timeless favourite in French Toast and marries it with classic dessert toppings – Sticky Toffee Pudding, Cherry Bakewell and Banoffee Pie are just the start’ Before trotting off up and down the country to festivals and events in their custom horse box, TOASTESS will be serving their indulgent treats exclusively at The Grafton for the duration of The Bell & Brisket residency. Twitter: @TheToastess

The Bell and Brisket at The Grafton, 20 Prince of Wales Road, London, NW5 3LG

Early Burns Night Ceilidh

Mrs Grafton is a half-Scot so it’s important to us to celebrate Robert Burns’ birthday in style with our annual Burns Supper and Ceilidh! We’re celebrating a wee bit early this year, on Saturday 24th January (rather than 25th), We’ll be serving up some sexy Haggis-based dishes to ensure your Burns Supper is complete and whiskies will of course flow unreservedly. The Spring Heeled Jacks’ rousing traditional tunes and dance caller will take care of your feet, so get your dancing shoes on and be ready to twirl!

NYE 2014: Back to the 90s

How many boxes can you tick below ? If the answer is more than 5, it’s possible you already know where you’re gonna be this New Year’s Eve. Yes friends, The Grafton’s NYE 90s Party is back.

Open til 2am. We’ll be playing the best of 90’s RnB, Hiphop, Britpop, Pop and Dance and FULL 90s DRESS is best if you wanna impress. You can bag free bubbly, goodies and more if you find a crystal in our Crystal Maze Challenge.

Need another reason to be here? Entry is FREE all day and all night.

Let’s get ready to rumble.


2nd Birthday Beer Festival

We can hardly believe it- it’s our 2nd Birthday on 27th September! To celebrate, we’re reviving our now annual Weekend Beer Festival on Saturday 27th and Sunday 28th September.

Last year we celebrated home town brewers but this year, in honour of our resident BBQ maestro Texas Joe’s, we’re throwing an American Beer Festival! More details to follow but you can expect:


Last year’s fun…

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We’re in the running again for the Great British Pub Awards!

We are extremely proud, albeit a tad bashful, to announce that The Great British Pub Awards has once again championed The Grafton as one of Britain’s best pubs! The Grafton has recently been announced as winner of the Best Partnership Pub for the South East and London region.

The award recognises licensees that have successfully worked with their pub company (in our case Enterprise Inns) to develop their pub in the past year. We beat some incredible competition from numerous pubs in the region to win the title, so we’re truly tickled pink.

The awards are organised by leading pub industry magazine, the Publican’s Morning Advertiser. Its editor Rob Willock says: “The award recognises the licensees that have been the best exponent of either the leased, tenanted or franchised model over the past 12 months.

“The Grafton has a real partnership approach with their pub company and Susie and Joel are creative and passionate licensees.”

We will now go forward to the Great British Pub Awards 2014 national final, held at the Hilton Hotel, Park Lane, London (SWANKY!), in September. We’ll go head to head with other regional winners for the UK title ‘Best Partnership Pub 2014’ and also have the opportunity to compete for the overall champion of champions title of ‘Great British Pub of the Year 2014’.


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