The Duke of Cambridge – A bit of conscience in Islington

Recently checking out one of my favourite London pubs online, I was surprised to see a whole lot of negative reviews on Tripadvisor. Given that it’s one of my neighbourhood pubs, I won’t deny there is some stronger degree of bias but I still feel compelled to come with a rebuttal…

In Islington, slightly off Angel station in a quieter residential corner, the Duke of Cambridge is “Britain’s first and only certified organic pub.”

Organic, so what? You might say… Yes, organic alone won’t help if the food isn’t truly good. But it goes a long way towards a more conscious way of eating. This gastropub prides itself in the environmentally friendly and sustainable sourcing of its ingredients: fruits and vegetables come from regional certified organic farmers; animals are bought whole, meaning everything gets used; there’s an explicit policy on fish as well, again emphasising sustainability and environmentally friendly procedures.

On the back of this policy, menus change daily depending on what’s available. Isn’t it a proof of true freshness, when the blackboard menu changes right in front of your eyes while you’re sitting there? I myself have missed out on a meal a few times as it disappeared, quickly wiped off by the eccentric but efficient bold-shaved waitress before I could order it. Yes, it’s a shame in that very moment, but hey, if that’s what it takes to have an environmentally conscious and guilt-free(er) meal, I’ll go with that.

The food is well presented and there’s always a diversity of dishes, meat, wild game or fish, with a good nutritious balance. The constant change in menu means you’ll never get bored.

Duke of Cambridge starter

Duke of Cambridge main

Attention to detail of course comes with a price and if you are really just going to a pub for quick & cheap, this is not the place for you. Starters may be on average somewhere around £8 and mains between £15 and £20.

Organic and sustainability is not everything, but if you do sometimes pick that Fairtrade banana, why not make a difference closer to home as well?

One advice, should you decide to go: book a table in advance in the restaurant area rather than the pub area. A very popular destinations, the pub area can be crowded by neighbourhood families, many with small children, which can cause quite a bit of “liveliness.” A few meters apart can make a big difference to the overall experience though.

 

Price: £££

Food: ****

Service: ***

Decor: ***

Square Meal

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