UNTIL THE COVID PANIC — sorry, pandemic — Loving Dalston published an exclusive guide to Christmas Day pub openings in and around Hackney.
The authorities are now emphatic that Christmas 2021 will not be cancelled. Still, pandemic upheavals of some kind may change festive-season plans of more than a few pubs. So whichever pub you choose for an excursion, you might be wise to choose one close to home: London runs no public transport on the greatest single holiday of the English year.
This is just the start of the guide. It is added to daily as the situation becomes clearer nearer the big day.
* JD Wetherspoon, 282 Mare Street, Hackney E8 1HE (020 8525 9010), 11am-3pm. Craft beers in spacious interior, usually male-dominated. A local loves the chain’s carpets so much (true) he wrote a book about them. Foyer smoking area. Company policy bans dogs, even those without a drinking problem
* Prince George, 40 Parkholme Road, Dalston E8 3AG, noon-3pm (020 7254 6060), sometimes an open fire, dog-friendly.
* Molly Blooms, 525 Kingsland Road, Dalston E8 4AR, (about) noon-3pm, has had many names yet keeps its off-on cultishness and Irish identity, even to the Joycean extent of cultishly dropping the apostrophe from its name. No children, small dogs only.
* Railway Tavern, 2 St Jude Street, crnr King Henry’s Walk, Dalston N16 8JT, noon-3pm. Handsome, comfortable interiors, pizzas “unapologetically” vegetarian — ie, molto tradizionali. Children and dogs welcome.
* The Village, 31 Orford Road, Walthamstow E17 9NL (020 8521 4398), noon-3pm. Styles itself a craft beer pub but when Loving Dalston visited this month, the food was bland and costly: eg, £5 for five small onion rings. No local cask beers were on sale — the pumps offered only two multinational-owned ales. Comfortable seating, sizeable tables and spacious covered garden. No children, no dogs.
David Altheer 201221
* Publicans, the list has grown since it was first published so if you want your pub added to this list, at no charge, email firstname.lastname@example.org. Include the necessary details (see examples above) and no more, not even a photograph. Readers, please take home tests regularly and other precautions for the safety of all and to prevent our NHS becoming avoidably over-pressed
* All pictures © DavidAltheer@gmail.com and all for sale for reproduction. Bigger format versions usually available
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* Government vaccination programme — press.