Embassy Bar, Canonbury
Along with the nearby (now defunct) Social, Embassy was one of the original Islington bars to give the kids an alternative to the nearby scary boozers and insipid chain pubs. Whilst others have taken their time to catch up - with mixed results - Embassy remains popular. With its stylish, darkly illuminated interior and red velveteen flock wallpaper (which made an appearance when flock wallpaper was still uncool), its easy to forget you're actually sat in grey Essex Road. Surprisingly, drinks aren't extortionate, while DJs feature Thursday to Sunday, playing tunes invariably from the more predicable soul, hip-hop and funk end of the spectrum. On weekdays it's a satisfying and lively place to have a drink, if you arrive early enough to get seats. However, on weekends, it gets very busy and with the allure of a dance floor in the basement it essentially becomes a club, complete with an entry fee after 9pm. Not to everyone's taste, this is nonetheless a reasonable example of the kind of bar that's often done rather badly.
119 Essex Road, Islington, London, N1 2SN
020 7226 7901
How to get there
Door-to-door journey planner
How to find the Embassy Bar pub
From Essex Road station, turn right and the bars on your right after a few minutes. From Angel tube, turn right and when you reach Angel Green take the right hand branch onto Essex Road. The bars on the left after a few minutes.