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[personal profile] katstevens
Coal City, Edmonton, London N18

Evening everyone! We head to the far frozen North for this week's featured article: Coal City is not a colliery in Yorkshire, but a small Nigerian restaurant in Upper Edmonton. The edikang ikong (a hearty veg soup) was just the right level of spiciness to thaw out our intrepid reviewer.

New to RGL this week is Cafe Rosh in Shadwell, serving an all-too-rare combo of fried breakfasts and biryanis (and chicken themed sandwiches) for a very reasonable price.

Elsewhere, The Melbourne in Wallington has closed for a quick refurb, while in Chinatown, RGL favourite Leong's Legend has moved around the corner to Gerrard Street. I'm sure we'll get round to paying a visit to the new location soon!
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[personal profile] ewan
Saravanaa Bhavan, Ilford, London IG1

Welcome back, belatedly!

This week's featured article is Saravanaa Bhavan, IG1 4PU in sunny Ilford. It's part of an international vegetarian Indian chain, and maybe you've been to one of the other London branches in East Ham or Tooting? Ganesha will watch peacefully over your dosa eating if you visit this spacious branch.

Other additions are a shabby pub/restaurant in Worcester Park/Cheam called The HG Wells, a Nigerian restaurant called Coal City in Edmonton (why not surprise the staff by visiting), and Chang's Noodle in London's fashionable Chinatown (excellent quality, and expect more than one noodle).

There's an update to The Gilpin's Bell in Edmonton, now under non-Wetherspoons ownership, but still offering Ruddles and similar cask beers.

Reported closures are Arbutus (always a bastion of unpretentious Michelin-starred fine dining) and The Windsor Castle in Marylebone (a bastion for the moustachioed gentleman).

Finally a couple of reopenings are The Fitzroy Tavern in Fitzrovia, and One and One Chinese buffet in Angel (now with meat, bucking the trend towards veganism).
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[personal profile] ewan
Welcome to a new week on RGL!

The Bus, Croydon, London CR0

This week's featured article is Bus, CR0 2BQ. It is a greasy spoon cafe in a bus, up Selhurst way. It's child friendly. Also it's on a bus.

Four new articles are as follows: The Long Room in Tooting, a pub with relatively cheap food; Saravanaa Bhavan in Harrow, a branch of a vegetarian Indian chain, thankfully not too anglicised; Jen Cafe in Chinatown, specialising in hand-made dumplings, a quick turnaround operation with better meat than veg options; and Nusa Kitchen near Liverpool Street station, a fine soup-focused takeaway corridor.

Finally, one reported closure is Oui Monsieur in Stoke Newington, a short-lived French bar/restaurant.
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[personal profile] katstevens
Yu Xiao, Dalston, London E8

Evening all! A bumper week, kicking off with this week's featured article Yu Xiao, a Chinese supermarket on Kingsland High Street (right near Dalston Kingsland Overground station). It's stuffed full of noodles, pickles, tofu and other East Asian groceries.

Our old peripatetic friend the Japan Centre (currently located in Shaftesbury Avenue) has had an update. A slightly different selection of tofu, noodles etc is available there, as well as a vast number of magazines with Japanese boybands on the cover. The Blythe Hill Tavern in Catford has also had an update, including some useful #limeandsodawatch pricing info.

There are plenty of new pages this week, including three fully vegetarian eateries: the Lighthouse cafe in Catford, Indian restaurant Saravanaa Bhavan in Ilford, and the awkwardly-portmanteaued CoffeE7 in Forest Gate. Guess which one has a chandelier! Also new is the Orbit Beers Taproom, just off the Walworth Road (good for train spotting), and Cappuccino in Norbury (good for fried eggs). However fans of egg will no longer be able to obtain tarts from Sun Luen Snack Bar in Chinatown, as it has closed.

Finally, some cinema news: the Bromley Empire and Leicester Square Empire are now Cineworld Bromley and Cineworld Leicester Square respectively.
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[personal profile] ewan
Hi there welcome back to another week of interesting things to drink, eat and do south of the river (and maybe like one or two things to the north -- though that lack is entirely my fault by the way).

Senzala, Brixton, London SW9

So the featured article this week is Senzala, SW9 8PS, which is a creperie in Brixton Village Market, that burgeoning community of little foodie units. There are sweet and savourity galettes and crepes served up by Brazilian chefs, and if you're vegan you'd usually steer clear of this kind of thing, but fear not for they do some vegan options too that sound great.

The new articles are: We Brought Beer, a branch of a craft beer shop/stall in Tooting, where you can drink on the premises as well; Frydays, a fish and chip restaurant in Norbury (do you see what they did with the name eh?); and Som Saa, a well-reviewed Thai place in Whitechapel/Spitalfields, so do go read Kake's review, as it sounds great.

There's an update to The Old Dispensary pub in Camberwell.

The Shooting Star near Liverpool Street is now temporarily closed for refurbishment and will reopen under a new name.

Finally, one reported permanent closure is Maotai Kitchen in Chinatown.
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[personal profile] katstevens
Sun Luen Snack Bar, Little Newport Street, London WC2

Hullo RGLers!

This week's featured article is for Sun Luen Snack Bar in Chinatown, which sounds like a nice quiet place for a breather (and an egg tart) in the centre of town.

A bunch of new articles have appeared! There's a branch of the Franco Manca pizza chain in Wimbledon; long-established dining spot Joanna's in Crystal Palace; the organisationally-challenged Tartine Artisan cafe, and Lebanese restaurant Meza, both in Tooting Broadway. The Bond Street branch of Rasa has had an update following a visit, by me! Spoiler: it's still great, and you should all go.

Lastly, after what seems like aeons, the Waterloo Tap is finally open, and ready to sell you some craft beer.
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[personal profile] ewan
Willoughby Arms, Kingston, London KT2

Welcome back! This week's featured article is The Willoughby Arms, KT2 6LN, a pub on the north side of Kingston. Of course, you knew that from the postcode, so I need hardly say. It's a handsome building from the photo, though what were once separate rooms seem to have been knocked through somewhat (as is the style). Go to drink Twickenham ales and watch cricket on the TV, still lovely despite a musty smell.

Two new articles are Sun Luen Snack Bar in Chinatown, with eggy egg tart; and House of Bottles, an off licence in Brixton.

There are big updates to veggie favourite The Gate (their Angel Islington branch), and post-work vertical drinking favourite The Hope Fitzrovia, which used to be a nice pub once upon a time. Still, sounds like it might just be fine on a weekday afternoon if you're ever there at such a time.

Finally, just to mark the reopening of Camberwell's The Bear pub, for which our write-up is sadly rather out of date.
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[personal profile] ewan
I'm back-back-back from my holidays to take over update duties from Kat.

風味食堂 (Food House), Chinatown, London WC2

The featured article this week is the imaginatively named Food House, W1D 5QH, which we can confirm does indeed offer food. But perhaps instead you should call it 風味食堂. In fact, it's Northern Chinese and Sichuanese food, moved from that bit of Charing Cross Road currently being refurbished. The food was a mixed affair -- check the review for more details -- but the Chinese 'hamburger' was considered rather good at the most recent visit, and the service is friendly.

Lots of new articles, many of them in Tooting. Those that aren't are a relaxed Italian in Covent Garden, Wildwood Kitchen, and the Clapham Junction branch of We Brought Beer beer shop (we added their Balham branch recently). Moving onto those Tooting outlets, we have: Apollo Banana Leaf (a meaty Sri Lankan); Dosa n Chutny (a South Indian cafe); Gourmet (a Pakistani bakery/sweet shop); Pooja Sweets and Savouries (an Indian sweet shop); and Tooting Daily Fresh Naan, which will sort you out for all yr naan needs (though watch out for the hygiene rating).

There are updates to The Lyceum Tavern and The Edgar Wallace, both on or near the Strand.

Sadly, plenty of reported closures too, most of them pubs as noted in the London Drinker magazine: All Bar One by London Bridge ('redeveloped'); Costa Dorada on Hanway Street; The Fox Reformed in Stoke Newington (renamed); The Gilpin's Bell Edmonton Wetherspoons pub; The Man in the Moon Stanmore 'Spoons; Mela (an Indian on Shaftesbury Ave); The North Pole in Islington (renamed); The Queen's Head in Mitcham; The Widow's Son pub in Bow.

We've heard that Mum's House (a Burmese grocery, not literally your mum's house, unless your mum is Burmese and runs a grocery shop) has moved from Wood Green to Tottenham.

The Misty Moon in High Barnet is now called The Butchers Arms.

Finally, Adams Cafe in Croydon has reopened, for your London Road greasy spoon needs.
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[personal profile] ewan
Welcome back!

Amber Tree Cafe, Deptford, London SE8

This week's featured article is the Amber Tree Cafe, SE8 4AD, a cafe in a former pub building on Deptford High St. Sadly there's not much of historical pub interest inside. Still it's a friendly (and child-friendly) place which does a fine banana cake.

Two new articles this week. First off is Food House, an uninspiringly-named Northern Chinese and Sichuanese restaurant in Chinatown, cash only and with some interesting menu items. The other is Four Hundred Rabbits, going in a quite opposite direction re name, but offering good size sourdough pizza portions, craft beer and lots of gelato.

There's an update to the entry for one of Wetherspoons' finest pubs, The Knights Templar in Holborn.

The four reported closures relate to Chinatown restaurants we've just caught up on: Jade Garden; Red N Hot; New Aroma; and Harbour City.
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[personal profile] katstevens
Wood Green Cineworld, London N22

Hullo all! It's been a busy week for me - I've moved nearer to the Equator! Lots of other stuff has been happening too.

Our featured article this week is for Cineworld Wood Green, which I personally visited a few months ago to see the amazing/terrible Jupiter Ascending (2015) starring Mila Kunis as 'a young woman discovers her destiny as an heiress of intergalactic nobility and must fight to protect the inhabitants of Earth from an ancient and destructive industry.' Don't get it mixed up with the Wood Green Vue which is just by the tube station. I definitely didn't do this. Meanwhile the old Cineworld in the Trocadero is now the Picturehouse Central, and looks much fancier for it.

New to RGL are two veggie cafes in Fitzrovia: the miniscule Kin off Great Portland Street, and Ethos near Oxford Circus, which sells by the slightly pricey 100g. Even more costly however is the loss of Beatroot on the other side of Oxford Street, a fine veggie cafe which has closed due to the redevelopment of the bottom end of Berwick Street. In further sad news for vegetarians, Food For Thought on Neal Street has closed too.

The RGL crew has paid a visit to the Hagen and Hyde, an Antic pub in Balham which does a reasonable food menu, as you'd expect. There's also an update to Manchurian Legends in Chinatown following a dinner visit.

The Grove in Golders Green has closed and is now a mysteriously goth-looking bar called 'Wallace'. Finally, the Melton Mowbray Fuller's pub on Holborn has been done up and rechristened as the Inn of Court. And that's your lot for this week! Even if I hadn't been unpacking boxes I'd be exhausted after all that.
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[personal profile] ewan
Viet Rest, Deptford, London SE8

This week's featured article is Viet Rest, SE8 4NS, a small Vietnamese restaurant/takeaway in delightful Deptford. Kake has visited a couple of times to get takeaways, and it sounds like the glutinous rice with braised pork is the dish to get.

Sigificant updates to the article on Shahanshah in Southall, an Indian cafe/takeaway with fantastic samosas but watch out for unsolicited peas.

Finally reported closure for Golden Day on Shaftesbury Avenue.
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[personal profile] katstevens
Maotai Kitchen (農家大院), Chinatown, London W1

Good afternoon RGL crew! It's September, and that means there's a whole bunch of exciting new Good Beer Guide updates in store for next week.

But you'll have to be patient! Here's this week's featured article for Maotai Kitchen in Chinatown. There you can eat a Villagers' Spicy Bowl, filled with spam, pig's blood, tripe, fungus and presumably some degree of spiciness.

We have a new article for the Station Tavern in Brimsdown (that's up near Enfield), a pub with a sensible attitude to lime and soda pricing. There's also an update for the nearby King and Tinker, although 'nearby' is fairly relative once you get out near the M25. In fact there's an entire golf course and a country park between the two pubs, so 'nearby' in this instance really means 'share the first two letters of their postcodes', HOWEVER by my calculations they are only 0.000000000000510334 light years apart which is hardly anything in the grand scheme of things.

Finally, Pogo Cafe has closed (but is apparently soon to re-open as a different vegan cafe), as has the East Molesey branch of Nicolas wine merchants.
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[personal profile] ewan
Skewer shop, Chinatown, London WC2

This week's featured article is Chuan Chuan Xiang, a takeaway shop attached to Baozi Inn, specialising in skewers and steamed buns. It is spicy and meaty, so be warned if you go!

We have only two new entries, because I've been failing to write up anywhere I've been recently. However, others have been, so we have The Shakespeare pub by the Barbican, and Reform Social and Grill in Marylebone, a hotel bar and restaurant which sounds decent, but perhaps (as is the way with hotel ventures) a tad overpriced.
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[personal profile] katstevens
Sekforde Arms, Clerkenwell, EC1

Morning RGL posse!

This week's featured article is the Sekforde Arms, EC1R 0HA, a cosy, old-school Young's pub in the backstreets of Clerkenwell. Last time I went there I ate a reasonably-priced lasange and blimey if it didn't hit the spot. Also one of the bar staff was wearing an enormous chocolate gold medal round her neck. APPROVED.

New to RGL are the Fox Inn in Keston and the George and Dragon in Downe, both located in the London Borough of Bromley, Home of Punk Rock. Hungry? Why not try Dirty Burger, a small but perfectly hygienic pop-up restaurant in Kentish Town? Or how about Chuan Chuan Xiang, a similarly-microscopic takeaway in Chinatown that does extremely spicy skewers?

There's a bumper crop of pub updates as Kake has been doing sterling work on the annual Good Beer Guide round-up: the Capitol and the Dartmouth Arms, both in Forest Hill; the George in the nice SE London Hayes; the Good Yarn and the Queen's Head in my old stomping ground of Uxbridge; and finally the Hut, the Crown and the Prince of Wales down the road in Hillingdon (a bit too far for my 18-year-old self to stomp to).

One closure to report: Soho Silks has metamorphosed from a silk shop (in Soho, funnily enough) into a dry cleaners.
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[personal profile] katstevens
Tin Goose, Heathrow Airport, TW6

Morning RGL! Apologies for the slight lateness of this week's post, your correspondent was out investigating the beverages and attractions of E20 (verdict: AWESOME, reasonable-sized Olympic Park latte is £2.40).

This week's featured article is the Tin Goose, TW6 1AP, a surprisingly decent pub inside Heathrow Terminal 1. Last week you could see 38 buses from the pub's window, this week you can see PLANES. Best of all it opens at 5am!

New to the site is the excellently-named Saucy Sausage, a greasy spoon in Addiscombe with a decorative flair for ketchup sachet arrangement.

Closures: Patterson's, a posh-nosh restaurant in Mayfair is having a bit of a revamp and is 'closed until further notice', while Peaches House, a Caribbean takeaway in Walworth is consigned to the folder of RIP. However rising zombie-like from the grave is Manchurian Legends! Remember we said it was closed the other week? Well, even the best London-based review blogs can jump the gun sometimes. We're sorry, still-open Manchurian Legends!
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[personal profile] katstevens
Clapton Hart, Lower Clapton, E5

Hullo RGLers!

This week's featured article is the Clapton Hart, E5 8EG, a newly-refurbished Antic pub opposite Clapton Pond. As well as eight handpumps featuring plenty of local beers, you get a lovely view of all the 38 buses turning around at the end of their route!

There are three closures to report: Goldfish City, a Chinese restaurant in EC2; the Bloated Mallard pub in Teddington, and Manchurian Legends in Chinatown (now a Cantonese barbecue).

No new articles this week unfortunately - perhaps a pub or restaurant has just opened near you? Why not tell us about it in the comments and we'll put on our Investigating Hats and go check it out!
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[personal profile] kake

This week's featured article is Orchard, SE4 1LW, a nice little bar and restaurant in Brockley.

Vegetarian and vegan options are clearly marked on the menu (the photo here is of the warm lentil and roast vegetable salad, which is vegan), and there's step-free access and an accessible toilet.


Recent additions to RGL include YBR Cakes, a cake shop and cafe in Thornton Heath; Chai Corner, an Indian tea shop and cafe in Croydon; and Manchurian Legends, a Dongbei (northeast Chinese) restaurant in Chinatown.

One reported closure: the Wheatsheaf in Vauxhall.

kake: A tan capital R on an olive-green background, representing the Randomness Guide to London colour scheme. (RGL)
[personal profile] kake

This week's featured article is Leong's Legend, W1D 6AX, a small Taiwanese restaurant in Chinatown offering some rather good dim sum. Their xiao long bao are among the best I've had in London.


Recent additions to RGL include the Horseshoe, a craft beer gastropub in Hampstead; the Duke of Edinburgh, a locals' pub in Wood Green; the Pembroke Castle, a pub in Primrose Hill; and the Man of Kent, a locals' pub in Nunhead. It's been quite a pubby week; we also updated our writeup of the Ivy House in Nunhead.

Reported closures are Long Time Cafe in Brockley, Tadim Cafe in Camberwell, and Himalayan Spice in Chiswick.

kake: A tan capital R on an olive-green background, representing the Randomness Guide to London colour scheme. (RGL)
[personal profile] kake

This week's featured article is New Aroma, W1D 5PP, a restaurant on Gerrard Street in Chinatown offering Sichuan and Fujian food. (There's more info about Fujian food on my Reading Chinese Menus blog).


Recent additions to RGL include Pilpel, a small cafe/takeaway in Spitalfields specialising in hummous and falafel.

Two reported closures: Tiffinbites near Moorgate and Saki near Smithfield Market.

kake: A tan capital R on an olive-green background, representing the Randomness Guide to London colour scheme. (RGL)
[personal profile] kake

This week's featured article is Books For Cooks, W11 1NN, a Portobello Road bookshop and cafe devoted exclusively to books about cooking and food.


Recent additions to RGL include Deli Felice, a nice little local cafe near Rotherhithe Station; Bermondsey Brazilian Shop, a small Brazilian cafe and grocery shop on the Bermondsey/Rotherhithe borders; Canteen, a British restaurant in Canary Wharf; Preto, a Brazilian rodizio restaurant in Putney; and New Aroma, a Sichuan/Fujian restaurant on Gerrard Street in Chinatown.

Only one reported closure, but it's a big one: Pacific Plaza in Wembley, mooted as the replacement for the much-missed Oriental City, has now closed in its turn.

The Pacific Plaza website claims that the closure is temporary, but problems have been evident for some time. The supermarket failed to materialise despite being promised as "opening soon" for over a year, their PR agency reported repeated non-payment of invoices last December, and at the time of writing the Doki (crockery shop) website states that although all Pacific Plaza tenants had been paying their rent, Pacific Plaza was not paying their own rent to Wembley Retail Park.

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