The Lovely North London Literary Hangout Where Bookshop Meets Wine Bar • BookBar

Typically, a literature lover will utter “Oh, I could spend all day in a bookshop” to everyone that makes eye contact with them.

Often a slight overstatement, sure, but offer them wine and a space to chat about prose until close? Then, the bookish brigade will be exaggerating this declaration no more when they find the worlds of bookshops and wine bars colliding.

BookBar hangout in North London
Image: BookBar

Blackstock Road’s BookBar nails this very idea; making what is often viewed as a solitary activity into a communal hangout.

Every time you finish a great book, you inevitably want to shout about it to anyone who will listen. And while your housemate might nod along politely to you waxing lyrical about Monica Helsey’s Really Good, Actually, on your quiet night in; really, you want to be speaking about your favourite chapters at places like BookBar.

Founder Chrissy Ryan recognises the concept of losing yourself in a book, and raises you with the idea sharing your love of literature with friends over a glass of wine. Calling BookBar a “warm, welcoming space for people to discover and socialise around books”, it’s simply a place to share what inspires you about the items you’re surrounded by in the space: books!

Carrie Soho Is Back alongside a bottle and glass of wine
Image: BookBar

What’s happening at BookBar?

Aside from just being a brilliant space for a drink and shouting about the genius of The Island Of Missing Trees, BookBar hosts inclusive events throughout the year for the community to revel in.

At sessions with authors speaking about their work, you can hear authors you love or perhaps are just discovering speak about their work. BookBar’s Spring Sessions include inspiration from Santanu Bhattacharya on One Small Voice; and Cecile Pin on Wandering Souls; with more to follow later this year.

Best Of Friends by Kamila Shamsie next to a glass of red wine
Image: BookBar

There’s also live music, wine-tastings and even “read-dating”, where you might ignite a modern day Bennet-Darcy situation.

Flicking through pages proves to be a natural remedy all year round, and BookBar’s programme Shelf Medicate is (probably) scientifically proven to give the blues a kicking. Flick through these prescription boxes, each with their own name and description.

Perhaps you’re in need of the “Sophisticated Reader Prescription” a tonic best-served to those who wish to impress with a cocktail of “classics and current trends”. Or maybe, you need the shot-in-the-arm of “Commute Buster”, a package of thrilling page turners to speed up a daily journey.

Shelf-Medicate bundles are selected for each individual order, and this personal touch is ideal for anyone looking to reaffirm their love of reading. Plus, you’ll be able to rave about them all when you rock up to an evening at BookBar, with your glass of wine in tow.

“It’s never about how many books you’ve read that year or whether you’ve read the latest prize-winners” Chrissie Ryan adds on her website. “At BookBar, books are social.”

Find out more about BookBar on their website and check out their Instagram page. BookBar can be found at 166 Blackstock Road, N5 1HA.