Are You Game?

Edgy East – home to gimmicky little haunts such as the cat cafe, the cereal cafe and even an owl cafe. One that tops the list for me is the board game cafe (or Draughts as it’s officially called).

This great little spot under the arches by Haggerston station is home to over 500 board games, categorised by type/level of difficulty/recommended number of players (Monica would have a teeny tiny orgasm) and guarded by helpful, adorkable board game “gurus” who are happy to recommend something to suit your tastes and intellectual capacity.

Draughts Games

They have classics such as Chess and Monopoly, childhood favourites to make you nostalgic (a neighbouring table were playing Ker Plunk – remember that rattly gem?!), newer games such as Cards Against Humanity and a whole load of games that you’ve probably never heard of unless you’re a true board game aficionado.

If your attention span (like mine) is shorter than the memory of a goldfish, I recommend Timeline, a card game in which you build a timeline of historical events (and which is much better than it sounds from my poor description). Of course, if you’re there to game hard or go home, the gurus are on hand to explain how to play any game in the library, so that you don’t have to endure the sexy task of reading a board game manual whilst on a date.

Draughts Timeline

The drinks menu largely consists of local craft beers and ciders, and there are plenty of snack/light meal options to fuel your gaming. When the maitre d’ warned us on arrival that we could “only” stay for 4 hours, we almost gave her a sarcastic “OK”, but in reality it’s easy to while away an entire afternoon at the board game cafe.

Draughts Outside

Date factor: great for first dates, 100th dates, double dates, mate dates
Price: £5pp to play unlimited games (max. 4 hours), drinks from £4.50, food from £6.50
Getting there: 5-minute walk from Haggerston overground station
More info:


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