I've got a soft spot for The Betsy Smith. Why? It's got a big and varied cocktail menu (big fan of The Niece and the Blueberry Amaretto Sour), the food is delicious at a decent price, and the decor is funky and original. Would definitely recommend for a chilled bite to eat or a couple of drinks with friends.
I previously ranked this as a fave place in NW London. Things change.
Tonight I couldn't even get in.
All I wanted was a Friday drink and the place was 30% full. Yet a trio of doorman said I needed to pay a cover charge.
I'm a pro-band guy, happy to support emerging artists. But none of the bouncers could explain what the cover charge was for - except perhaps attitude. So I left and see no reason to return.
The Betsy Smith is my favourite place in Kilburn! Since it's not the most stylish area, Kilburn can be proud to have such a restaurant/pub/bar!
Flamingos hanging upside down from the ceiling, vintage furniture and girlish flower wallpapers are only a view reasons why this place is so cosy and still so cool.
The best thing about Betsy Smith, however, is their pizza which is not expensive at all: a Margherita costs only 6 GBP and is huge and most of all: soooo delicious!
Thursdays you get two cocktails for one and you can have great breakfast in the morning.
I have been the recipient of many brunches here on a lazy morning and have even enjoyed the dinner menu on occasion too.
The Betsy Smith is a not-so-hidden gem in the middle of most bustling and grotty part of Kilburn High Road. It is like finding a diamond ring in a sewer.
They have done a great job on the decking that runs the facade outside The Betsy, but I struggle with the sights/sounds/smells of the 16/332 bus stop and adjacent greengrocer stall as accompaniment to my posh cocktails and gastrogrub.
The Full English is very full here and the Chicken/Bacon Club is bountiful. A highlight for me is the Steak Baguette - tasty and a decent serving too. The dinner menu can change somewhat, but each of the dishes have been great on all of my visits. Sunday Roasts look lovely here, but I have always been tempted by other dishes.
I love the uber eclectic decor in the main restaurant part of The Betsy Smith. Great on a night out but I'm sure not so sweet when you are "overhung" of a weekend. Extra points for the cool bathroom fittings and layout.
Cocktails are great here too - big list of both boozy and virginal variants. Staff are all pretty great too, but I have had a fair few kitchen/order related mix-ups happen.
Overall, a cool number, only let down by it's location.
Not a place for beer drinkers! The cocktail menu looked awesome, though I didn't grab anything to drink that day.
I ordered the calamari, and that's it. Sorry, no in depth food details...but all I can say is that the quality of calamari was deffos above avvy. Very large cuts and very tender, not overly chewy. The downside was the mediocre avocado "mousse" (which wasn't really a moose..so I'm skepty..) and a salad that..had no business being there and had no dressing. The dish lacked a true bound feeling. I'd like to go back though.
Well, summer finally arrived in London this weekend. The bright sunshine prompted a burst of happiness from Londoners (people smiling on the Tube, no less!) and doesn't everyone look more healthy and attractive with the sun out?
I met with some friends in Kilburn and they suggested catching up over some cocktails at the Betsy Smith. The decor inside had some interesting features (pink flamingos and a Narnia-style wardrobe - no, I didn't step through it!) but we managed to snag one of the outside tables to enjoy all too rare sunshine.
There was a good choice of non-blended cocktails. Full marks for catering for teetotallers as well on the cocktail menu. I had a Fruit Nojito, which was basically a mojito with no rum - they offer it with a choice of fruit and I went for strawberry. I followed that with a Nectar Point - ginger syrup, honey, mint leaves with apple juice and muddled pear shaken and served over crushed ice - I enjoyed the combination of fruit but it was a touch over-sweet. My friends seemed happy with their alcoholic cocktails.
The Betsy Smith did also have quite an inviting looking a la carte menu but that may have to be for another time.
I'm not a native of Kilburn but prices did strike me perhaps being on the high side for this part of London.
However, a nice venue for an afternoon in the sun and cocktails.
Another nice posh pub wit good grub.
Smack dab in the middle of ghetto kilburn area. Makes for interesting people watching when you're having lunch outside in the front patio area.
I've had the pizza which was delicious and huge for one and they let me adjust a topping. And I've tried the betsy club sandwich, chicken and bacon, uhuh. The chips it came with weren't the best, too soft and one of the bigger ones was undercooked.
They really try and impress with all the fancy shmance drinks on the menu but most of what I had didn't really wow me and were a bit too overpriced for the experience. And hopefully I will remember next time not to order any tall drinks unless I don't mind this vegas style behemoth glass appearing at my table. All that was missing was the sparkler.
Decor is like hipster TGIF's threw up in here. And the bathroom has a weird fun house mirror in it.
Thursday night is happy hour from like 7-2am I think. Can't find the info on the internet but its on the outside on a sign somewhere i swear. Lemme go check. brb.
I wish there was a good enough description of a brow, furrowed intriguingly, at least a little shorter than this one I am currently doing....
The Betsy Smith, new place, less than a year old and is going ok... looks real nice inside although I feel I may break something seem a little delicate. The Betsy Smith is a newish cocktail bar that looks like it's escaped from Old Street but left it's substance behind..... going on a slight assumption that Old Street has substance... or even class... i digress..
I looks really nice and the staff seem cool, now, not before, but now the seem cool. They do this charming little thing where they give you selected cocktails in a teapot with some dainty tea cups. Someone, somewhere has spent a lot of dosh on this. This was a little place called "Osteria Del Ponte" which, I heard, was a great restaurant, but it was killed by the surround trade. That being a betting shop, a chicken (pigeon) shop, a fruit and veg man and another costa-coffee ripoffs so that failed.
The "Betsy" has a Live music night on Thursdays and a DJ on the weekends, I assume. Although it's quite small it does do well with space and levels... The toilets are decent...
half the time you're looking at the decor the other half your keeping an eye on your stuff, not because of tea-leaves, just because the ergonomics of the place aren't quite right.. needs a bit of feng shui-ing...
oh, and it is a bit pricey... but enjoy
I really want to love the Betsy Smith. Its probably one of the nicest bars on the Kilburn High Road in terms of decor.
I've only been a couple of times and I find the prices a little over the top.
On my second visit however I ordered a jug of Pimm's and some nachos. Which Changed everything. The nachos are absolutely delicious and the Pimm's had ALL the right about of fruit and mint in it.
Suddenly the price was right and I was oh so much happier. The Betsy Smith won me over a little and I would go back again and again to repeat that tasty experience.
You win for now Betsy.
Ah Betsy Smith! What did you do, I wonder, to get a pub named after you? Whatever it was, I'm glad you did it!
I ventured over to the Betsy Smith for a farewell roast for a friend from Oz who had popped by for a couple of weeks. On a Sunday afternoon, it was fairly empty and we had managed to reserve the entire raised section for our merry group. This also entailed having our own waiter (although since there were just a handful of people in the pub maybe it was just by default) who was incredibly friendly and helpful.
I opted for the lamb roast (you can also get beef and I believe chicken) which consisted of two slices of lamb, a handful of potatoes, and some carrot slices and cauliflower. The Yorkshire pudding was more like a biscuit and had none of the soft fluffiness you'd expect for the soaking up of gravy. Rather, it was hard and chewy and not at all enjoyable.
The lamb slices were tender with an excellent brown meaty sauce. The downside is that the few ounces of meat was not sufficient to satisfy my hunger. The potatoes and other veggies soon followed as did the Yorkshire pudding cracker. But still I was hungry. This is unusually as a proper Sunday roast typically puts me in a food coma. I even polished off the remains of a couple other peoples' food (one of my friends refuses to eat veggies...his loss) but eventually came to the conclusion that based on the portion size, Betsy Smith must have been a slight lass with a small appetite.
Then we got to dessert. Wow. Each serving of sticky toffee pudding was enough to serve a group of 4. The pudding itself was incredible with soft airy cake soaked with sugary date sauce. The vanilla ice cream was similarly delightful although I remain puzzled why it was served in a thick cold pastry bowl. An interesting presentation but one that overall diminished the enjoyment of the dish. I was a bit disappointed in the roast but the dessert more than made up for it!
Other thoughts: The drinks are creatively named (I had a Tequila Mockingbird) and in general are tasty. Prices aren't too bad with the roast, dessert, and a drink coming to around £20. The atmosphere and setting is brilliant and tends to cosy and comfortable with rich old woods. The location could be more accessible although since I live SE London pretty much anything in this area is "not easily accessible" as far as I'm concerned. Oh, there are bike racks right in front with is a definite plus.
Overall, a good place to relax and catch up with friends but not if you are starving!
Lovey full English
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