Hackney’s party pub set to broaden its appeal

The Dolphin Pub, in Mare Street, Hackney.

The Dolphin Pub, in Mare Street, Hackney. - Credit: Archant

A famed pub known for it’s legendary late-night antics will show a more mellow side to its character.

The Dolphin in Mare Street, Hackney, has been serving pints for 150 years and is known across the capital as a riotous party venue with night owls drinking and dancing until 4.30am.

However, it found itself in hot water with Hackney Council when the authority ordered it to slash its opening hours, though this hasn’t come into affect as an appeal has been launched.

Now, in a bid to bring in a more laid-back midweek clientele, it has hired new chefs, given the place a lick of paint and put on quiz night among a host of other Monday to Friday attractions – as well as voluntarily closing early to keep everybody happy.

Polly O’Connell, the pub’s social media manager, said: “It is still the same old pub people know and love – but we’ve created an entirely new aspect.

“We’ve got bands coming in to do DJ sets, which is really cool.

“Then we have a quiz night and an open-mic night on alternate weeks, which works really well with the piano we’ve got in there.

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“Our new menu features some really gourmet burgers and we’ve had the decor upgraded.

“It’s got a really lovely, cosy midweek feel to it.”

She added: “Though The Dolphin is known and loved for its weekends of debauchery, there’s now been an entirely new element added.

“This is now somewhere to come in a nice chilled out environment for a meal and a few drinks midweek.”

The Dolphin’s loyal customers flexed their online muscle when the town hall threatened to cut the pub’s licensing hours.

X-Men actor Michael Fassbender’s social media team and Xtra Factor presenter Caroline Flack were among more than 2,700 who signed an online petition to keep it open.

However, some people in the area welcomed the council’s decision, saying drunks urinating and vomiting on doorsteps were a serious nuisance.