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’.


GBPA logi

Alma Street Fair 2014

A top day was had by all at this year’s sunny Alma Street Fair! We loved meeting lots of lovely local people and catching up with pub regulars at our Iced Tea Bar. We were even lucky enough to be pitched just a hop, skip and jump away from the main stage, so were treated to some amazing sounds floating on the breeze down to our stall. Special props to the incredible gospel choir that opened the show, not forgetting local legends Michael Kiwanuka and Mr Hudson.

Back at ours the official after party was jumping with an amazing live set from Grafton favourites Grizzly and The Grasshoppers and the Alma Street Fair vibe continued upstairs with official DJ sets.

Congratulations and thanks to organisers Inkerman Area Residents Association and everyone else involved for another cracking year!


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This week : Quiz, NIMBY live band night & The Alma Street Fair Weekender!

As ever our weekly Pub quiz is with us on Tuesday night but there’s even more afoot at The Grafton this week….

NIMBY Presents… Launch Night – Wednesday 23rd, 8pm
A brand new live music night with a monthly residency right here at The Grafton in our upstairs bar, NIMBY aims to bring you the best live acts from London’s underground music scene in a truly DIY manner. This inaugural event is FREE to enter and with a flyer we’ll even treat you to a free shot to get you going. Click the images below for sounds and videos of what to expect.

kindred shins










ALMA STREET FAIR WEEKENDER – Friday 25th-Sunday 27th, all day
The Alma Street Fair is back with a bang on Sunday 27th July featuring food stalls, bric a brac, crafts, bars and activities. It also features music acts across its two stages. The fair runs from 12 noon to 7 pm and the official after-party will of course be hosted at The Grafton. To celebrate this wonderful event, we’re once again throwing our Alma Street Fair Weekender!

DJ night- authentic Americana, Funk & Soul

Pop-up gin bar outside (daytime)
Chris Gee DJ set (from sundown)

Chris Gee – SoundCloud

Face Painting and Cupcake Decorating for kids
Pop-up gin bar outside (daytime)
Live music from Grizzly and the Grasshoppers
The official after-party with DJ sets from all the acts

Camden Fringe comes to The Grafton with Salon:Collective

the salon:collective began through simple meetings bringing skilled artists of varied backgrounds together. Conversation, debates and the sharing of work was the aim; musicians played, actors read, artists showed their work. A natural progression from drawing room to public forum began to emerge, and they are now roaming around sharing their skills, picking up new artists to collaborate with, and producing events, shows & unique experiences.

Salon:collective regulars Geraldine Brennan and Michael Luke Walsh are hitting Camden Fringe with the solo works they created in salon:lab in summer 2013 where they enjoyed development input from Dominic Kelly and Lizzie Conrad HughesBook here to see their double bill,Public/Private, in the upstairs bar at The Grafton: July 28, 29, 30 & August 4, 5 & 6, 8.15pm, £5

Read Geraldine and Michael’s Countdown to Camden Fringe diaries here.