My boyfriend and I spent New Year's Eve (2013-14) here. First we had dinner on the main floor and it was delicious. Seriously everything we had was great. I didn't find the food very run-of-the-mill pub style at all. The wine and beer selection was fantastic.
And then there was the party downstairs, hosted by those awesome Feeling Gloomy boys (it's usually at the Phoenix). Nice atmosphere and tunes, great crowd. No regrets picking this place for the last night of the year!
Not a bad location and most of the staff are friendly enough. Prices reasonable and food looked pretty good too. Why two stars then? Purely and simply because they don't allow vaping. In this day and age - and bearing in mind it does no-one any harm - that should be a negative stars review.
Ended up going fifty yards further down the road where the beer was better and I could vape to my heart's content.
Just a big pub, sorry man.
Food: Nothing special...
Beers: Got some specials!
Crowd: 20-40, international students, british girls and some badly cut suits.
It's more an excuse bar (Want to go for a drink, don't want to travel for it or think about it) than a destination.
Oh, wait: friendly staff!!
Although they were all out of Sunday roasts by the time we got here for dinner at around 6pm, we still loved our second choice meals! Of course, the waitress waited until we had our beers until she broke the news to us that they had no more roasts, but I suppose that was just smart on her part. I had the fish and chips, which were crispy when I wanted them to be and juicy when I wanted them to be. Great batter, too - not too oily. My husband had the bangers and mash, which were super tasty and savory. He loved them! Plus, he had a bit to drink so he was loving everything, if you know what I mean. My parents both tried the gnocchi and they both seemed to enjoy it. For dessert we had the sticky toffee pudding, which was TO DIE FOR. Great food and atmosphere to hang out for the night!
Coming from America, the notion of a pub is kind of a foreign one to me. The only time I really ever think of pubs is around St. Patty's Day, but even then I avoid them like the plague since they become amateur night. And so, after spending the past several weeks frolicking around London, I've become quite familiar with the ways of the pub.
Some of the things I love about them...
The cider. It's hard to go wrong with that.
The food. Bangers n Mash, fish n chips, you name it.
The people. Casual, laughing, fun people
The bartenders. Mellow, laid back, friendly
The decor. Dark woods, low lights, vibey vibesville
The cost. Cheap.
The drinks. Strong and cheap.
The bummer: They close too damn early.
The Albany has all of the above, but I just wish it would stay open longer. It seems like just as you are getting a nice, fun buzz on, the lights go up and boom, your night is over unless you want to go to a dreaded club and pay a fortune for drinks and bad music.
However, while this pub is open, it is great and definitely one of the best I've been to on my trip here. I think we've been here a good 6 times now and each one proved more fun than the next. Good times and right off the Great Portland tube stop, so it's easy to get to.
Oh as a warning to girls... When you use the upstairs restrooms, sit down lightly on the seat. They have the sanitary napkin bins right up next to the toilet seats and they are made of sharp metal. Drop your arse on that and you will awake with a nice tasty bruise on your bottom the next day and nobody wants that! At least not this curvy bird!
When I begin wixing up my mords and mumbling phrases like "Take me drunk I'm home," you can almost bet I've been at the Albany again.
I'm not sure if every hour is happy hour, but £2.50 for a double vodka soda (house vodka being Smirnoff, mind you,) is an absolute steal...and my liver's new nemesis.
I was first drawn in by the ambiance. A wide open space with funky modern light fixtures, the Albany has managed to create a number of different intimate seating areas for any size of group. (I highly recommend coming here on awkward double dates and after wine-heavy holiday parties.)
While I can't high-five the food quite yet, the bar staff is quick and down to Earth, it is within spitting distance of the Great Portland Street tube and those drink specials will keep me coming back long after I leave the neighbourhood. Definitely one of the best pubs around.
p.s. If I haven't been conviscing enough (£2.50. seriously.) They offer 1/2 price bottles of wine on Mondays.
Shhhhh.... don't tell anyone but this is where the BBC folks hang out. Hate a show you hear on the radio? Come here with your rotten tomatoes and lob them at the discerning punters. Okay actually don't do that because this is actually quite a nice boozer.
The do tasty cloudy cider which after a pint or two you will feel like the world is your lover. It's in a prime location for being a warm up drinking spot for 229 if you are going to see some bands and actually they have their own entertainment on her too. Comedy and the likes.
I have been here a few times and in the evening it can get super busy so watch out if you are planning on coming here in a big group. All in all, a solid effort!
First, in the spirit of honesty and all, a caveat: this is the first time I've ever been out in the Great Portland Street area so your present guide to The Albany hasn't exactly the strongest frame of reference upon which to base her review. That said, I do have an opinion of The Albany and it's good, really good.
A spacious pub just a hop and a skip from the Great Portland Street tube station, The Albany was the perfect place for a few drinks after a Christmas party at a friend's flat earlier this week. The drinks - I gather - were cheap, the seating plentiful and we actually managed as a group of seven or so to bag a big table with comfy sofas either side at 11pm. If you find yourself near Great Portland Street head to The Albany, I can't vouch for the food but their vodka tonics are just dandy.
I play a gig at the Albany every month (3rd Monday of the month if you're interested) so you'd think I'd have a lot of love for it. Well I do... just not as much as you might think.
OK let's do the sandwich thing, we'll start with what I like, move on to where it needs improvement and then end with something good.
Firstly, I love the way it's decorated, dark walls and a black wooden ceiling with an incredible relief. Seemingly random sets of furniture making up several large areas that you can enjoy with friends or strangers. The bar has a wonderfully extensive range of beers, ciders and liquor (and I'm assured the happy hour is great though I've never taken part).
Where the whole place falls down for me is the food. It's OK but not great and I feel this place should be doing kick ass grub. The menu reads well but it over sells the end product, the burgers are unimpressive, the use of the word mezze does little to dispel the "not a lot of food for quite a bit of money" aspect of the starter menu and when I asked about the frankly decadent sounding lasagna with it's "Angus Aberdeen beef steak mince and beef tomato sauce" I was reliably informed it's not even made on the premises!
NOT GOOD ENOUGH!
I, on the other hand, make a lasagna fit for royalty and would happily do a comparison test if there are any volunteers.
The other thing that 'grinds my gears' about the Albany is the sound on stage. This venue hosts some of the best names in comedy and a lot of very up and coming bands, when we play there's only 2 of us and all I can hear is the tambourine! Get some monitors people!
OK something good something good.... the staff are lovely x
Visiting my 19 year old cousin studying at Regent's College, I had my doubts about his taste in pubs. I'm nearly 10 years older than him and have been drinking legally in the US for a while. While he can't have a drop of liquor here without a fake ID. I imagined he knew nothing about fun times at low-key pubs. He did - so I stand corrected.
First place he took me was The Albany. We had a blast. Bartenders were super friendly - most likely because I didn't know tipping isn't mandatory in the UK. Beers were 3 pounds and the music was great mix of pop, punk and whatever. After about 4 beers each, we started dancing and making asses of ourselves. But the patrons didn't treat us like dumb foreigners - they laughed and joined in.
Disappointed when the lights came on at 1 am...we were having a grand time! Thanks Albany - I heart you!!!
Serve variety of drinks
I met good friends here for a few the other week. What a gem!
Way down Great Portland Street, it's reletively unknown but still easy to get to and well worth a visit.
The atmosphere is totally inviting, and you feel comfortable sitting down from the moment you step in. Apparently it's pretty tough to get a table on the busier days, we were in there having a sneaky cider on a Wednesday and it was packed - so I can wholly believe it.
The prices are good, the toilets are clean (plus, the manager has left a really important notice about leaving drinks and bags lying about - which I thought was not only very thoughtful but also ensured that I kept my wits about!). I spent ages studying the food menu, even though we didn't eat, and that looked yummy too. Great choice of beers and fun music to boot.
Fine old Fitzrovia pub. It's the picture that you'd imagine you'd have if you were in the US and thought "posh Fitzrovia pub" if you knew where Fitzrovia was.
This place has decent food and a stunning selection of beers and whatnot, slightly let down by the inordinate prices. Yes, they've broken the £4-a-pint barrier.
And... I dunno, there's something about it that says "we are running this as a business to separate you from your cash". It's fine- that's what it's all about, after all, but it's a little too clean and a little too shiny and a little too on-the-bandwagon of hard-to-find ales without any of the authenticity or care that goes into, say, the Tap.
More of a stop-in-and-have-a-quiet-pint kind of a place rather than a place for a session.
The best way to top off a day spent frolicking in Regent's Park is the same way I'd top off any day spent frolicking in London. A pint or two or four at the first local pub you can find. This led me and several friends to The Albany last year. There was plenty of good drinks (of course, cider!) and conversation going around. Friendly and helpful bartenders, tables and seats galore (on a Saturday evening). The atmosphere was dark but not dreary, as it should be!
The place did close down pretty early, but hey: There was a dance club downstairs (only on the weekends if I recall properly)! So we took it downstairs. And the night rolled on...
This is a cozy little place with dark walls, and open arrangement and gold bannisters/support beams. The location is pretty nice and central, easy to get in and out of.
What I really like here though, is that they have Sierra Nevada ON TAP!!! Sierra is one of my favourite beers from the States and nothing beats having it on tap.
They also serve a decent selection of food throughout the day. Personally, I've never had more than a few pistachio nuts, but the food I've seen come out does look good.
Every time I have been here it has always been quite packed, but once you find yourself a seat to nestle on, it isn't too bad of a place to just pop by for a drink.
If you've been for a walk around Regents park nearby, coming here for a glass of wine or a pint of beer, with a few hot bar nibbles is quite nice.
I've never been to Albany for just a drink, I've only ever been to see a show in the basement downstairs.
Called 'Lowdown at the Albany' - cos it's in a basement, geddit? It's low down, because it's beneath ground level. And it's the lowdown, because they are cool, they know what the lowdown is. I believe lowdown is a word that means 'what is currently considered hip'.
Anyway. It attracts quite a bunch of comedians who preview Edinburgh material and it's the main home of Robin Ince's Book Club and School for Gifted Children. So it's a good place to see some (usually) slightly left field, intelligent jokes.
I think the space is actually not a great one and not especially conducive to a great comedy night, but it seems to be doing very well for itself despite my opinion.
The pub upstairs seems quite nice. Big wine list, food, trendy atmosphere
I've been to the The Albany a number of times on business trips, and I think it's a fine establishment.
The food is good for the price, the drinks are good and the staff is pretty friendly.
What I like best is the ambiance, it's got a rustic feel with a lounge mixed in.
Overall it's not the the very best bar/pub I've been to, but it's a nice place to grab a pint and eat some good food.
A very nice pub and given they have more than one chef on staff, it is the perfect place for a lunch meal when you don't have 3 hours to have it. I think the chips portion with the meal is too small but that is because they are so lovely.
The food is always well cooked and almost always well presented. It is a bit prict but the atmosphere and location more than compensate for the cost.
There is an excellent selection of beer here on draught and they even have Fruli fruit beer. A really great place
Do you like a laugh with your pint? Then this is the place to come! Upstairs at the Albany is a lovely open bar area with plenty of space to enjoy a real ale or beer from the wide range on offer here with your friends. There are lots of comfy chairs, tables and sofas to settle into. This venue also serves pretty good pub grub if you want to make an evening of it. Downstairs is a theatre bar where you can see the best of up and coming British comedy - I've spent some of the most painful evenings of my life down here after my sides have split from too much laughing!
Well worth the visit!
I hate to be the bearer of bad tidings, but I fear this place has gone downhill since they reopened after refurbishment.
Staff? Harried and confused.
Table bookings? Only available online, and then often ignored or unconfirmed.
Food? Half your table will finish before the rest even get their meal.
Order a rum and coke? You might spend a disbelieving minute or two as the person behind the bar *slowly reads the liquor bottle labels* until she finds the rum.
It's a shame. A horrible shame.
Had i been reviewing this pub a few years ago I'd have given it five stars and raved right now. That was until the Albany got taken over by new management last year and standards slipped significantly.
Although the pub still attracts regulars, and a lot UCL students, the Albany is no where near the standard it once was. Gone are the days of delicious roasts and all day comfortable drinking, now the menu has changed and the food is rank. I went a while back for a roast - they had run out or Yorkshire puddings (really not that difficult to make), and roast potato's?! A friend of mine ordered the fishcakes from the starter menu, costing a hefty £7, and was presented 2 deep fried (to the point of burnt) patties and a limp lettuce leaf. We complained about this and the lack of puds, all complaints were met with blank faced misunderstanding and no apologies. I hate to harp on, but this would never have happened before!! The actual pub is nice and big, and very suitable for large groups to meet and chat. Jut don't expect service with a smile.
I liked the spot, but after a re-openng where they have redone the interior and offer a new fodd and drink menu, it is better than ever. Worth checking out!
A comfy pub serving some great beers and in spitting distance from the 229 Club Gt Portland Street so a good place to have a swift pint before a gig.
It's an almost local pub to our place and I can recommend this pub. It's always busy (not too over crowded, apart from Saturday night). It's a cosy pub and the staff are friendly!
This pub became my pub of choice whilst working nearby and was the ideal setting for the friday post-work pints (sometimes mid-week ones as well). It offers a wide range of lagers/bitters/ciders on tap and also some really good real ales. The food is good old pub food and comes at a reasonable price. All in all its exactly what you want after a hard days work.
The Albany pub has a basement room for comedy and music - for the purposes of most of the comedy events, the venue is called the Lowdown. It has hosted classic comedy nights including Robin Ince's Book Club and Gary Le Strange's Club Le Strange. It's not a bad room and there's a bar downstairs so you don't have to constantly go upstairs for drinks.
This is a comfortable pub, with everything you would want in an all-rounder. The food is actually rather good, the range of drinks large and the service friendly. There are frequent performances from a range of (in my experience) fairly chilled out musicians. Sport is shown, chairs are comfortable. It's easy to lose track of time in here.
Any pub that sells Doombar can't be bad. Saturday lunchtime food was reasonably priced and tasty. I would visit again if in the area.
The Albany is a pub opposite Great Portland Street tube, very near to Regent's Park in London. Upstairs is a very relaxed pub with lots of soft seating and areas you can book. Downstairs is a 100-capacity venue which hosts comedy nights Mon-Thur, and club nights Fri-Sun including some great indie nights. A good selection of beers, including Brains SA recently added by the new Welsh manager, and fairly basic gastro pub food, notably a great burger!
The Albany is a lovely big spacious pub situated on the corner of a junction so there are lots of windows to people watch through. It was a really nice layout with a lots of comfy sofas, chairs, stools, high tables, low tablesetc. It has a good intimate venue for seeing up and coming comedians at a good price. I would recommend this place for any occassion whether it be a big night with meal and show or just a quick drink. It is a good all-rounder.
The Albany is one of those places that's great to go to after work for a few drinks, but is equally fab on a Saturday night (go to 'The Lowdown' downstairs for one of their club nights, usually indie based) or on a Sunday afternoon for some good food. They quite often have comedians too and the selection of drinks is good too, it was a barman at The Albany that first introduced me to Sailor Jerry rum so hurrah for him!