The Poetry Café

Do you have a suggestion? Or is there something we're doing particularly well, or you would like to see changed? We're happy to receive any and all comments. Simply contact the Poetry Cafe.

Customer comments

"A place to reflect, be oneself and alone at times without feeling uncomfortable. I like its functionality."

"Laid back peaceful atmosphere, unpretentious."

"I like poetry and the cafe but I'm not an event groupie - it's good the place can cater for people like me who want a corner not to be sociable."

"Really nice food, big portions, calm atmosphere."

"I like the use of good ingredients: good oil, good bread etc. The cooks seem to care about their food..."

"Relaxed atmosphere, quiet, friendly, civilised! Always somewhere to sit, papers available, very good fresh food, good background music and exhibitions, good that you can come for just a coffee or a full meal or a drink."

"I would like to thank you for the most interesting and enjoyable poetry evening I attended last Saturday (...) at the Cellar of the Poetry Café, hosted by Niall O' Sullivan. Kindest regards from Holland." Kees Klok, translator

"Many thanks for the wine for the event last night - much appreciated (& the red was bloody good!). Cheers." Les Robinson, Tall Lighthouse

"A very well positioned meeting place in London with good food and relaxed, friendly atmosphere." Imelda Quinn, Inpress Limited

"Thank you so much for your help when we filmed with you (TS Eliot and modern poetry for BBC2); a wonderful oasis of poetry and calm in the middle of London." Caroline Miller, Wall to Wall

"Hello! It was terrific to visit Poetry Cafe last week while in London and to participate in the open mic. I and my colony of friends really enjoyed the readings and the entertaining MC.  Thanks for the opportunity to share a bit of poetry from the West Coast." Paula Lowe, USA

"Thanks very much for all your help this year. The Studio has been a very convenient space to teach in, and our group has enjoyed our workshops at the poetry cafe very much." Jean McNeil
"Thanks for the space, it worked really well for us." Casting Fusion
"Just a quick email to thank you and your staff for their help last night. The show went really well." Paul Chandler

"I can tell you about the venue, downstairs in The Poetry Café, hidden away in a Covent Garden backstreet, below a vegetarian Café where the lampshades have Ralph Steadman cartoons, the walls are thickly plastered with posters for poetry events and the customers sit and discuss the relative merits of Kerouac and Ginsberg. The performance room was filled to no more than about five times a comfortable capacity and every one of the extremely friendly and welcoming crowd was a bone fide poetry aficionado." Bob Hale / The Arras Review

"Just wanted to say a big thanks to you and your staff for hosting us last week on and keeping us topped up with coffees and lunch. What a great place -  the venue was perfect for our needs and hopefully we can utilise it again soon. Hope to come back when it's not work!". Caron Ward / GP Strategies Ltd

 "I would like to than everyone who helped make our launch evening for the Paragram anthology 'Connections' such a great success.We had a lovely evening and I have had many follow up comments saying how much everyone enjoyed the atmosphere and surroundings a swell as the readings. Thank you all." Sally Blackmore

 "Thanks very much for letting Poets Anonymous use the space for a reading - we had a good time. Best wishes." Peter from Poets Anonymous

"Thanks for your continual support. We love it here and feel special." John Wischmeyer / Film Club

"Thanks for a great evening...Poetry Unplugged. The atmosphere, the enthusiasm and the passion was perfect and if we didn't have to board a train to get back to Ipswich, we would have stayed until the cafe closed for the evening. We will definitely be returning for another session soon." Sofia, happy customer


Press comments

The Poetry Café was voted one of the top ten cult cafés in Elle Decoration, and is also included in the Guardian/Cafe Met guide to London's most funky, stylish and interesting cafés: "Of course all cafes are 'poetic' in the psychogeographical sense - Frenchness, smokiness, loneliness - and most people have penned the occasional ode over a half-empty stretto. But here poetry is performed and shared..."

Poetry Café (The Poetry Place)
22 Betterton Street
London WC2H 9BX

Email: Poetry Café
Telephone: 020 7420 9888

Opening times 

12 noon - 11pm Monday to Friday
7pm - 11pm Saturday

Closed on Sunday, and on occasion for private hire - please check the calendar before you visit.