When you’re married to a beer lover, the beer menu can be just as important as the food menu, and it’s good to have a few places up the sleeve that will tempt said beer lover into town!
Handily, The Three Johns in Angel is easy to get to – just a couple of minutes’ walk from Angel tube station.
It’s also in the close vicinity of other drinking gems such as The Craft Beer Company , The Lexington (great for American beer and bourbon) and The Earl of Essex (brewpub), not to mention recently opened chocolate palaces Damson Chocolate (London’s new bean to bar chocolate maker) and Jaz and Jules (purveyors of very fine drinking chocolate).
The space is rather grand, certainly when it’s not too busy it’s easy to appreciate the beautiful copper tiled ceiling and huge windows, with the space divided into two rooms – the main one with the bar and a second one off to one side. It’s an appealing space and the only real downside for me is that lighting is very low; it’s almost as dark inside as the November night outside.
The food menu at The Three Johns is short and simple. There are nine sourdough pizzas, three salads and a couple of desserts to choose from. But, as long as you like pizza, that’s plenty – the pizza toppings are so damn appealing it’s hard to narrow it down and pick just two.
In the end we select Chilli Con Carne, Tomato, Smoked Mozzarella (£9) and Fennel Sausage, Chilli-Roasted Sprouting Broccoli, Buffalo Mozzarella, Parmesan (£9.50), a white pizza, without the usual tomato sauce, with the intention of sharing both. Both are excellent; the base is so good that I even eat some my crusts – if you’ve ever shared a pizza with me you know this is a rare thing – and the toppings we chose are as good as we hoped.
The chilli con carne is fiery hot, and generously smeared over the base, reminding me of a Turkish lahmacun with Mexican flavours.
The fennel sausage and broccoli go together wonderfully, and this pizza my favourite of the two. Since Pete likes the other one best, we’re both happy bunnies.
The beer list is extensive with a good range on draught and an impressive list of bottles. During our visit we tried:
- Gypsy Hill Bounder – Pete liked this old-fashioned draught ale, a “very classic best bitter, perhaps a touch watery, nice English hops more leafy than fruity”.
- Stod Fold Dark – Like the previous pint, Pete appreciated the traditional nature of this pint, also on draught, and described it as a “a classic Porter, toasted malt, fairly dry, not much in the way of hops… very nice, very traditional”.
- Yeastie Boys Pot Kettle Black – Pete was quite a fan of this bottled beer, noting that it was a “very curious, clean crisp Porter that [was] joined 2 seconds in by buckets of grapefruit hops. Unusual but everything you’d hope from a south pacific Porter. Cracking. Very craft!”
- Heretic Evil Twin – Pete’s notes for this one were short and sweet, he described it as London Brewing Co’s “Mad As Hops in a can”.
For dessert, you can have a sweet pizza spread with nutella and toasted hazelnuts (£6) – we added strawberries to one half and bananas to the other; or some very decent ice creams (bought in from Snowflake Gelato, £2.50 per scoop) – the peach was utterly delicious and I appreciated it being peach ice cream rather than sorbet, peaches pair so perfectly with cream.
With my food fixation, even a venue that’s primarily about the beer needs to offer tasty food to make my shortlist. It’s great to have another such pub which will keep both Pete Drinks and Kavey Eats happy.
Kavey Eats dined as guests of The Three Johns pub, courtesy of Barworks.