Hackney top 10: our favourite pubs

Cosy locals, late-night dives, high-falutin’ foodie haunts: everyone has a pub that feels worryingly like home. Here are our top 10 favourite pubs in Hackney.

Adam & Eve

A handsome tile-fronted Edwardian pub, with plenty of original features, including latticed stained glass, plus an L-shaped pool table. Food is by The Cornwall Project, with fresh farm produce and seafood arriving daily from the southwest, and there are beers on cask and keg from the Five Points, Redemption and Tintangel breweries.

Bricklayer’s Arms

This corner pub in the heart of Shoreditch is mostly remarkable for keeping its low-key charm and not shifting with the surrounding trends. Come for cask ales, ciders and the jukebox.

Clapton Hart

Shabby on the outside, chic on the inside, this spacious, good-looking pub was a coaching inn in the eighteenth century. There are cask hand-pumps and guest kegs, plus Sunday roasts, open fires, board games and a cider and ale festival.

The Dove

A CAMRA-beloved pub with a range of real ales plus Belgian beers. They serve decent Belgian and British food, and the gleaming wood-panelled interior makes it a snug stop on a winter evening.

The Elderfield

Spruced-up pub on a Clapton backstreet which has retained its Art Deco wood panelling and fireplace. Board games and live music – folk on Monday, jazz on Sunday afternoon – provide entertainment.

The Empress

With a villagey setting in Victoria Park, this gastropub – all white linen, mosaic tiled floors and leather benches – is posher than your average Hackney boozer. The seasonal food is excellent and prettily presented: brave diners can try such delights as bone marrow with snails or crispy pigs’ ears.

Railway Tavern

Attractively restored old-style boozer on a quiet backstreet off Gillett Square, with some artful railway memorabilia, local and regional cask ales, Thai food and a Tuesday pub quiz.

The Kenton

Norwegian-run pub that scores for its immense Sunday lunches and lively events: a Monday film club, DJ nights and rock’n’roll bingo. In the cute beer garden they adopt the Scandi approach to a cool night, providing blankets to wrap up in.

The Owl & The Pussycat

Tasteful sea-green rather than pea-green, this Shoreditch pub occupies a listed seventeenth-century building, with stripped wood furnishings, Chesterfield sofas, a sunny courtyard and a restaurant upstairs serving trad British food.

The Scolt Head

Popular neighbourhood pub with a cute triangular garden, vintage Penguin paperbacks on the shelves, an excellent wine list and classy food with seasonal ingredients. Plus Sunday lunch, jazz nights and a Monday-night quiz.