Arsenal v Galatasaray S.K; where to eat before the game

By Tony Attwood

Since we launched the idea of reviewing places to eat before an Arsenal match my mate Drew has really got into this eating out lark, and so has actually started his own blog on the subject of eating out.   Although not just around Arsenal.

With his permission (at least I think I asked his permission – sorry if I didn’t Drew) I am taking a review of the Hope Workers Cafe in Holloway Road from his site, as our place to eat for the game on Wednesday….


If you wander down the Holloway Road from Highbury & Islington underground station you will pass a plethora of eateries covering pretty much every cuisine imaginable. This is one of the many delights of visiting the world’s greatest city, London.

We generally stop for some food and drink and like to vary the intake a little. There is a very decent pizzeria just outside the tube (La Pasta) where the staff wear themed Arsenal shirts on match days and pre-booking is advisable. Much closer to the ground a former cinema is now a Weatherspoons and heaves with red and white (and yellow) when a game is scheduled. The nearby chippy is pretty good too.

But stop long before that at the Hope Workers’ Café for an authentic London caff serving a huge variety of meals at very reasonable prices and in double quick time. You can go for one of the several set breakfasts (served all day), or fish and chips or burgers, home made lasagne or pie,  a steak, or just a salad. You won’t get much in the way of fancy wine but a strong cup of tea or can of pop or beer will help to wash it all down.

The manageress is formidable but welcoming; barking orders to the kitchen but making sure every customer is greeted with a smile and thanked and wished well on their way out again. You won’t ever go hungry here and, if you want, they’ll always be someone to talk to about football.

life is indeed good at the Hope Workers’ café


On the same site there is also an extension to our last review of where to eat near the Emirates – The Swimmer at the Grafton Arms on Eburne Street, just off the Holloway Road.  When we reviewed it last time we just stopped in for a beer.  This time we went for food, and the whole review, complete with pictures is now on line here.

I would recommend the food at the Swimmer – it was excellent.

The Directions

Hope Workers Cafe:  Come out of Highbury and Islington underground station and turn left, walking with the crowds towards the Emirates.  Continue for about one fifth of a mile and it is there on your left.  111 Holloway Road.   There is a map here

The Swimmer at the Grafton Arms on Eburne Street is close to where the Holloway Road meets Seven Sisters.  If walking from Highbury and Islington, continue down Holloway Road, past Holloway Road underground, cross over the road and turn right up Seven Sisters, then third left into Eburne St.  The pub is on the left.   You can also walk down Holloway Road from Archway.  There is a venue map here. 

But in both cases, if in doubt, use an A to Z!

More reviews anon.  If you want to submit one please email it to

There is an index of stuff on our home page.


7 Replies to “Arsenal v Galatasaray S.K; where to eat before the game”

  1. One of these days (hopefully sooner then later) I will be joining you guys at one of our home games and have a good ol chin wag at one of these eateries together!!!

  2. It can get hot and crowded at the Hope on a warm match day. Very popular. Best advice is to get there early!

  3. A positive mouth-watering post, Tony, which, if the sundry proprietors read Untold, should bring you free grub for life, on match days at least. 😉

  4. Looking forward to next month… as in just one month I will be back in London for the first time this season.
    Damn Drew you are making things difficult now to now where to eat. But maybe you, Tony and I could meet somewhere before the match and have a little bit to eat.

  5. I am making a (wild?) guess that this post which will be much more interesting, and far more mouth-watering, in the away game vs. Gala.

    London food < Istanbul food.

    Come to think of it : London food < almost everywhere food.

    Come to think of it 2.0: London -(Arsenal) = a real shit place to live in (crap weather, even worst food, not a great reputation for good looking women).


  6. I don’t manage to get too many Arsenal games these day but have supported them for 60 years. The Hope Workers Café is one of the highlights of my infrequent trips to the Emirates. I always approach with the fear that it might have closed and been turned into a wine bar. It is a wonderful anachronism and if anything should have listed status this café should. It is exactly the same as the cafes I used to go to in the 60’s when I started work. It is probably the only one left in London with its original tables, chairs and ambience. The rest have long gone, first to Wimpy Bars and then to various other food fads. It appears to have been in the same family for generations and I can only hope that they long continue their excellent service. The food is excellent and wonderful value for money. If you are of a certain age and want a trip down memory lane pay it a visit but get there early as on match day it does get busy. It should be supported and cherished.

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