The Parakeet - Rob Jones


Hattie Lloyd 06/04/23

The Parakeet

The Parakeet | Top-Tier Kentish Town Gastropub

Kentish Town has a new feather in its cap.

Well, a couple of feathers, actually – because The Parakeet has just landed, named after the tropical birds that are all over London.

The duo behind it are a pair of North Londoners who set out to create the kind of local they’d like to hang out in. And, like many people, it seems their vision of the perfect local is a smart, modern gastropub helmed by a couple of ex-Brat chefs.

the parakeet

Rob Jones

You’ll find The Parakeet just a stone’s throw from Kentish Town station, on the site of the old Oxford Tavern. They’ve restored the place with a nod to its 1860s origins: dark wood panelling envelops the walls, while period touches like the art nouveau fireplace are set off with a gallery of modern portraits. And dotted around the place are salvaged stained glass windows, framing intimate booths and casting a colourful glow over the tables – which is fitting, because you might just end up coming here religiously.

The Parakeet is split distinctly into two areas; the pub at the front and the dining room at the back, which even on a Tuesday evening was packed out and buzzing. It’s a great space for groups, with clusters of big tables in the centre, and booths set along one side. And at the back you’ll see the open kitchen, with the wood-fired oven and grill framed theatrically by the wall panelling (there are two stools placed directly in front of this, which make great front row seats to the action if you can get them).

parakeet dishes

Justin De Souza

Here, head chef Ben Allen and sous chef Ed Jennings use their experience at Michelin-starred Brat to corral the grill’s firepower into an inventive, seasonally led menu. And you’ll recognise that Brat dialect in the lightly smoky oysters, in the grilled mackerel, and, most strongly, in the sea bass, a show-stopping sharing dish that’s been butterflied and scorched over the flames, and served with a Basque-style piperade of sliced, roasted peppers.

Whether you construct your own banquet of small plates or just plump for a main, the stand-out dish here is the burnt leeks, whose firm, smoky stalks are essentially vehicles for the rich pecorino sauce accompanying them. There’s also a side of confit potato, which arrives neatly coiled like a snail shell. The team are serious about their sourcing, and Parakeet’s strength lies in allowing the ingredients themselves to sing.

parakeet dessert

Being a pub, the drinks offering is stellar whichever room you’re sat in – the servers know the wine list back to front and will happily introduce you to some of the more unusual options, like the Californian pinot noir they’re choosing to serve chilled (and it works). And of course, being a pub, there are plenty of high-end bar snacks to go with your pint in the main bar area, too.

Just in case you’re feeling peckish.


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NOTE: You can find out more about The Parakeet, and make a booking, HERE.

The Parakeet | 256 Kentish Town Road, London NW5 2EN

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The Parakeet

256 Kentish Town Road, Kentish Town, NW5 2EN

020 459 9630

8.3 | Great