Yesterday, Jon and I moved from the Barnsbury side of Upper Street to the Saint Peter’s side. Although the two areas are only a 10-minute walk apart, Upper Street might as well be the Great Wall, because in the 4 1/2 years we’ve lived in Islington, we very rarely crossed that divide.
Jon and I have spent weeks packing in preparation. For two foreigners, we seem to have a lot of “stuff” with us – the American Way, perhaps.
Our movers (the amazingly-strong, polite and prompt Aussie Man & Van) arrived at 8 am, and by 2:30 pm all our boxes and furniture had been unloaded in our new place. Drowning in a sea of boxes and bubble wrap and not sure what to unpack first, we decided to go for lunch at our new local, the Duke of Cambridge Pub.
Although it was late for lunch, the pub’s tables were packed. Jon and I found a table in the pub’s skylighted annex and ordered off the blackboard in the back.
Despite having been to the Duke of Cambridge once before in March 2009, I’d forgotten that (1) the place is all-organic; and (2) the prices are high. Chicken liver pate with chutney and gherkins, for example, was deliciously creamy — as chicken liver tends to be — but a rather expensive £8+. I know it’s organic, but chicken liver is supposed to be one of the cheaper ingredients in the world, no?
My beef mince pie was delicious and tasted made-from-scratch. The crust shattered at the tap of my fork, and I liked that the pie filling was neither too runny nor too thick. In fact, the gravy tasted like the result of a long braise.
Jon’s fish and chips was similarly well-prepared and flavorsome, though I wondered what was up with the oven-baked chips. Can they still be called chips if they’re not fried?
Service was friendly; tap water not a problem; and the food was pretty good. The place has all the makings of a fine local — except for the price. At £45 for a starter, two mains and a pint, our lunch at the Duke of Cambridge was too expensive for it to be a regular habit. Luckily, this side of Upper Street appears to be packed with pubs, so we’re looking forward to exploring the other local options. Recommendations warmly welcomed!
Duke of Cambridge Pub, 30 St. Peter’s Street, N1 8JT; closest tube station: Angel.