18 September 2011

North London - Angel - Sangria

I have a very scary addiction to Tapas restaurants.  It mostly has to do with me not being able to eat whole meals in a reasonable amount of time, so eating multiple tiny meals seems to make up for that.  If you're ever strolling around Angel on Upper Street, you'll notice that there are numerous eatery options all waiting for you to explore.  I was getting a bit overwhelmed with choosing a place to eat so I normally fall on my defaults at this point: Tapas, Italian or Chinese.

There were a few Italian places but they seemed more like Pizzerias (call me un-American, but I'm not that fussed over pizza) than pasta joints, and I'd already walked past the one Chinese place they have between Angel and Highbury & Islington stations.  I noticed a sign, jutted out onto the High Street that said something along the lines of Authentic and Spanish and Tapas so I was intrigued. It had a main seating area and a small outdoor terrace seating area down an alley on its side which looked really nice.  I like things that look a bit different, and aren't your same-old High Street establishment...boy, did I fall into a massive trap.

When I sat down at our table (I was with the bf), I almost instantly regretted our decision. The waiters fluffed about for a bit before one decided to host our meal experience, and clean off our table - our very wobbly table. I'm not sure about you, but 30 tapas plates on a wobbly table doesn't sound like a great idea. I suppose at this point we could've chosen to go inside, but we had already committed to being there, may as well commit to where we were seated at this point!

If you read my post on The Real Greek in Covent Garden, you'll know I wasn't impressed with their food. My vist to Sangria occurred the next day :( and I seemed to be having a strike-out weekend in London.  I can easily say that Sangria is my worst tapas experience, ever.  We ordered:
  • olives, which tasted like they had been fermented in garlic for 3 months too long
  • mussels which came out lukewarm and were cold about 5 minutes into the meal
  • a £10 cheeseboard that had stale, plastic-like cheese from being in open air for too long 
  • and a small plate of chorizo which is pretty hard to ruin so that may have been the one saving factor to this meal

We debated ordering Sangria but a jug would set us back at least £18.  I've seen other reviews for the restaurant and perhaps this was a matter of us picking the wrong things to eat - I hear they have a delicious paella. 

Overall, I wouldn't recommend Sangria for food at all, it's far too expensive for the disappointing quality. The do have a deal on paella during the week and that may prove to be worth the visit if you're hungry.  On the other hand it did seem like a lovely location for a few drinks and nice buzzing atmosphere for when the sun goes down. Also, this door was cute.

Sangria can be found at:

88 Upper Street
N1 0NP
Nearest Tube: Angel  

Sangria on Urbanspoon


  1. I had a terrible time there as well. True the olives were garlicky, but I like them that way. The food was good, but the service was absolutely appalling. After ordering paella I was told we would have to wait 40 minutes so I ordered tortilla instead. I asked to pay the bill and was told to wait because the paella still hadn't arrived. I tried to explain that I changed the order, but that didn't cut it with the waiter who refused to take the paella off the bill and was confrontational when I refused to pay the service charge. I guess Spanish customer service is part of the authentic spanish experience there, but I won't be returning.

    1. Good to know I wasn't the only one that had a crap time! I've tried to test out a few other places in the area, but I don't trust it for tapas.


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