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Lituanica, Beckton, London E6
Evening RGL crew!

Our featured article this week is for Lithuanian restaurant Lituanica, which you can find by following the DLR all the way to Beckton. The cuisine of Lithuania sounds carb-heavy, of which I am totally in favour. If you're not hungry, there's other Lithuanian fun to be had nearby, including a bookshop and beauty salon.

As promised the other week, your intrepid RGL team have ventured to parts south-west, to find out what's happening in Nork and write some new articles. Yes, that's right, I said Nork. Some might say Nork is technically part of Banstead, but here at RGL we like to think that Nork is more of a state of mind. Anyway, if you need a cup of tea while you're there, Lilly's cafe is a perfectly pleasant place to while away the hours as you try to figure out what else to do in Nork when there's torrential rain outside. The answer: go to Sutton, where you'll find Antic pub The Shinner & Sudtone (featuring an alarming number of porcelain owls) and Ii-Ma Sushi, which turned out to be a real find (I want to go back and try some different sakes).

If that wasn't enough, there are new pages for the Canada Water Cafe (a short hop from the Jubilee line station) and the Tip Top Cafe in Swanley, plus an update for Moshi Moshi Sushi in Liverpool Street station.

Phew! After all that adventuring I think we need a break - we'll be back in two weeks.
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[personal profile] katstevens
Crown & Pepper, Caterham, London CR3
Hello RGLers!

This week's featured article is for the Crown and Pepper in Caterham, a pub that incorporates an Indian restaurant at the back. They also have a bar menu if you don't fancy the full sit-down experience - try the okra.

New this week, we have the Union Jack pub in Southwark, that perhaps isn't living up to its potential beer-wise, and the French House restaurant in Crystal Palace, a cheerful establishment themed around '60's Francophone pop music (the drinks menu looks pretty good too).

There's an update for the Prince George (just off Queensbridge Road in Dalston) following a visit, which reveals its all-important lime and soda pricing to be significantly cheaper than the Union Jack's.

Finally, Fujiyama in Brixton has closed: lovers of spinach ohitashi will have to venture elsewhere.
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[personal profile] ewan
Hello and welcome back as RGL takes you to...

The Teapot, Forest Hill, London SE23

Leafy Forest Hill, where our featured article, cafe Teapot, SE23 3HF, awaits you. It's not big, but it will do you a good panino, and child-friendly portion sizes if you have children with you, which you may not.

There's a new entry for Jackson and Rye, a chain bar/restaurant in Richmond. I know there's one in Soho, as I've walked past it many times, but that's not a review. You can follow the link for that but be warned, there is a distinct lack of blueberries.

Finally, the reported permanent closure of Matsuri, a teppanyaki restaurant in St James's, by Piccadilly. You might miss some of its excellent food, but you won't miss the prices.
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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] katstevens
White Hart, Stepney, E1
Hullo all!

This week's featured article is for the White Hart in Stepney (not to be confused with the other White Hart a few hundred yards further down the A11 by the Whitechapel Gallery). The featured White Hart contains its own microbrewery so you'll have plenty of fresh beer to drink if you visit, and some decent food to soak it up with.

Aside from our Cockney drinking den we have a very Brentwood-focused week for new pages. Pub-wise there's the Brewery Tap, a small pub that does not have its own microbrewery as far as I can tell; the Rising Sun, which is in the Good Beer Guide and will do you a pickled egg; the Spread Eagle, which does scones and coffee as well as real ale, and a traditional boozer in the form of the Victoria Arms, which I'm pleased to report possesses a carpet. Elsewhere in Brentwood there's the Chicken and Frog, a children's bookshop, and Japanese food at Sushi City. The latter plays techno covers of Terence Trent D'Arby - I'm sold.

Finally another non-Brentwood addition: USSR Ltd in Leyton, which appears to be a Russian version of Aldi? I will admit to being intrigued both by the concept and the name! I wonder if they play techno versions of Дима Билан?
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[personal profile] ewan
Big update this week, mainly thanks to Oddbins. Anyway, here we go...

Tram Stop, Addiscombe, London CR0

Our featured article is Tram Stop, CR0 6RD, which is not in fact a tram stop but is right next to one (Addiscombe tram stop that is). It's a small coffee shop and cafe. It's child-friendly, and offers newspapers and bookswap books. The food is seasonal and good too!

Two new articles are: Magma, a small Ghanaian restaurant in Thornton Heath with a fine palaver sauce; and Gojo, doing Ethiopian food in a North Kensington basement, better than it sounds.

Four reported closures we've caught up with are: the Marylebone High St branch of Nicolas wine shop; the Barnes branch of Spirited Wines; Just Falafel in Covent Garden; and Japanese restaurant Kibou in sunny Wimbledon.

Those Oddbins renamings (generally from Spirited Wines or Nicolas) are:

* the Oddbins Beer Shop in Blackheath;
* the Notting Hill branch;
* the Wimbledon branch;
* the Kew branch;
* the Baker Street branch;
* the the Crouch End branch; and
* the East Dulwich branch.
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[personal profile] katstevens
Roti King, Euston, London NW1

Afternoon everyone!

This week's featured article is for Roti King At Euston Chinese, funnily enough in Euston. It's a small Malaysian restaurant that shares its basement space with Euston Chinese, so make sure you get the right menu. The food sounds excellent value for money, especially the lamb curry. Worth a visit if you're not in a hurry.

There are major updates to the articles for the JJ Moons Wetherspoons in Wembley (not to be confused with the JJ Moons in Ruislip Manor, or the one in Tooting, or the one in Hornchurch), and the White Horse, a a Fuller's pub in South Harrow.

We have a few new articles too: Bite near Northolt tube station is a Polish cafe serving inconsistent pancakes; M & D in Deptford, a Japanese restaurant with adequate sushi; and the Coach & Horses in Ickenham, site of many legendary outings by your author in the late 90s. Happily it is now around 3 changes of management on from that which BARRED ME FOR LIFE for smuggling in chip-shop-chips when the pub had stopped serving food. Readers, I ate my contraband sheltered from the rain in the nearby Pump, where my thoughtful chum Kirsty brought me out a pint. But enough nostalgia! The Coach still has the best beer garden in Ickenham, but for a quick drink you're better off in the Wetherspoons down the road (mercifully it's not called JJ Moons).

Finally, Taste Inn in Lewisham has renamed itself China China. Personally I think 'Happy Smell' is a better name, but there you go.
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[personal profile] katstevens
Afternoon all! I hope you had a good long weekend.

Zolio

This week's featured article is for Zoilo, a smashing Argentinian restaurant in Marylebone near the Wallace Collection. The wine list is interesting and the empanadas are excellent - if you're going for lunch, make sure you don't have to go back to work afterwards.

Your contributors have been busy this week: we've got new articles for Franco Manca, a branch of the sourdough pizza chain in Westfield Stratford City; the new-ish Baker Street branch of the Natural Kitchen, which has plenty of unhealthy options to choose from; Bumblebee Natural Foods (an independent grocers and bakery) and Kami (a Japanese restaurant), both in Kentish Town; and - long overdue for a write-up, considering how often I go there - the 24-hour Bagel House in Stoke Newington. I can recommend the £1 pizza slice as a satisfying late night snack.

Kika in Canonbury has closed and is now a cafe called The Fig Tree. Finally, although we don't have an article for it yet, it may be useful to know that the Phoenix bar in Cavendish Square (near Oxford Circus) is temporarily closed for refurbishment, reopening in early September 2014.
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[personal profile] ewan
Kenya Coffee House, Romford, London RM1

Featured this week is Kenya Coffee House, RM1 1ED. Your intrepid RGL friends have ventured to furthest Romford for Kenyan food and report back that it is good. You may go for the Christian soft rock, but stay for the excellent creamed spinach with your tilapia. They also do coffee.

New articles are: Villagers Sausages, providing sausages to the villagers of, er, Beckenham, and I seem to recall that I went there once years ago and yes the sausages are very good; and The Horse and Stables, a pub near Lambeth North that used to be called just The Horse, and remains fairly bland.

Reported permanent closures are two Vietnamese places in Deptford (Cafe @Migo in Deptford and West Lake) and Inshoku Japanese restaurant out the back of Waterloo, clearly not trendy enough for modern dining needs.

Finally, we have a reopening in the form of Panda Panda in Deptford, just slightly rebalancing the number of Vietnamese places in the area.
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[personal profile] ewan
Akwaah's Kitchen, Tottenham, London N17

This week's featured article is Akwaah's Kitchen, N17 8NS, a small African restaurant in Tottenham with a focus on Ghanaian food in particular and serving up some excellent kenkey (read the review if you don't know what that is!).

There are five new articles. We have Sawadika, a Thai restaurant in Holborn; Peckish Cafe and sandwich bar in Sutton; Japanese Canteen, part of a chain near Liverpool Street station; Itsu, another chain restaurant in the same part of town; and The Imperial Arms, a pub in Chislehurst.

Note that The Duke of Edinburgh in Wanstead has temporarily closed (so go to the nearby Nightingale).

Finally, The Elm Park near the tube station of the same name (at the edge of Hornchurch) has permanently closed.
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[personal profile] katstevens
Untitled

Afternoon everyone!

Our featured article this week is for the excellent Abeno, WC1A 1LY, a small Japanese restaurant near the British Museum, specialising in okonomi-yaki. This is a sort of omelette that the staff cook in front of you on a hot plate, and I can confirm it is delicious (though it seems they no longer have the intellectual-property-defying OLYMPIC mix on the menu).

There's a brand new article for a brand new pub, in the shape of the Forest Tavern, in Forest Gate. Well, brand new might be pushing it - it's a revamp of the old Railway Tavern. It probably won't surprise you that it's part of the Antic chain, and as a result is pretty similar to its siblings in Forest Hill, Leytonstone and other places I am failing to buy a flat in. In further Antic news, Jam Circus, their pub in Brockley, is finally going to be reopening in November following a fire last year.

Sadly there's also a pub closure to report. according to their website, the Pakenham Arms in Clerkenwell has been sold off, mirroring the fate of the Royal Mail sorting office opposite. We've many happy evenings there, and are sad to see it go.
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[personal profile] katstevens
Au Lac, Highbury, London N5

Good afternoon RGLers! After last week's mega-pub-update, we're turning our attention to restaurants this week.

Our featured article is for Au Lac, N5 2XE, a reasonably-priced Vietnamese restaurant in Highbury. Their fish sounds very tempting, especially the Tilapia - awesome little dudes who are also a natural alternative to pesticides, as they eat algae and malaria-carrying mosquito larvae. Though I'd expect that the pest-eating fishes are probably not the same fishes that will end up on your plate. For non-piscine fans there are a whole bunch of veggie options too, including sizzling aubergines!

Two other restaurants have been added to RGL: Priya in East Ham, specialising in South Indian and Sri Lankan food; and Kibou, a Japanese restaurant in South Wimbledon with decent food and some interesting beers. There are two reported closures as well: Punk bar off Oxford Street (demolished as part of the Crossrail works) and Impress Food Oriental supermarket in Bayswater which looks likely to be turning into yet another Sainsbury's (sigh).
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[personal profile] katstevens
Atari-Ya, Hendon, London NW4

Afternoon RGLers! I hope you had an enjoyable Bank Holiday weekend.

This week's featured article is Atari-Ya, NW4 3UX in sunny Hendon, which will sell you sashimi and quality tofu (and plenty of tea) for a very reasonable price.

There's a new article for Bright Courtyard, a dim sum restaurant on Baker Street that does great prawn and chive dumplings but disappointing xiao long bao. They also offer private dining rooms if you wish to compare the quality of your dumplings in near-secrecy!

To ensure your Surrey boozer knowledge is bang up-to-date, three pubs around the Kingswood/Tadworth area have updates to their articles: the Inn On The Green (very food-orientated), the Duke's Head (large but friendly, several handpumps) and the Kingswood Arms (a Fuller's pub with an open fire in winter).

Zeen and Royal Sweets on Drummond Street have shut, and the building now houses a restaurant called Taste Of India. However the Royal Sweets website indicates that their Tooting and Streatham* branches are still open if you fancy some mithai.

*Apparently the Streatham branch is closed too (see comments)!
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[personal profile] ewan
Ship, Fitzrovia, W1

Hello! This week the featured article is The Ship, W1W 6YB, an old-fashioned pub right in the middle of that vague area generally called Fitzrovia (and coicidentally very close to where I work), which still serves excellent pints of Bass, and has a huge amount of brass decorating its walls. There's also a rarely-spotted upstairs room which is all very pleasant.

Kat has added a Scandinavian restaurant in Marylebone called Verru. They also have Estonian beer. Good for taking parents to, as well.

The reported permanent closure is Soho Japan, again in Fitzrovia. I walked past it the other day, and it was all boarded up with workmen hard at work doing something to it.
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[personal profile] ewan
Lucky Seven, Stoke Newington, London N16

Happy New Year! This week's featured article is Lucky Seven, a second-hand bookshop and (mostly) record shop in Stoke Newington. I went there for the first time the other week having not even registered its existence before and it was filled with things from floor to ceiling, often precariously piled and stacked.

One temporary closure is Imperial War Museum, for six months.

Three reported permanent closures are, very sadly, Hoopers Bar, an excellent real ale-loving local in between Camberwell and East Dulwich; the Camberwell branch of Wing Tai; and the N1 Centre branch of Yo! Sushi (in Islington, that is). The last is the least sad, as I've ranked them on a sliding scale. Feel free to disagree with my ranking (unimportant as it is) in comments.

Also, Foote's Music has moved from Soho to Bloomsbury, so take note, music instrument fans.

In more positive news, a pub has reopened! In this case, The Wheatsheaf by Borough Market (no, not that one), meaning there are now two competing Wheatsheafs within a few steps of one another, ostensibly the SAME PUB (the first was opened when this pub closed for the Thameslink work and the management went around the corner to the Hop Exchange).
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[personal profile] katstevens
Lituanica, Barking, London IG11

Morning RGLers - how is it suddenly December? I'm sure it was June a minute ago.

This week we're headed Eastwards for our featured article! Lituanica, IG11 8EY is the Barking branch of a Lithuanian and Eastern European grocery chain, that also does hot food for takeaway. Kake is especially fond of their cheese and onion peanuts, but there are plenty of dumplings, unusual fish and salads to choose from if for some reason you do not find peanuts delicious. Or even deadly! Please do not eat the cheese and onion peanuts if you are allergic to peanuts. They may be tasty, but probably not worth dicing with death for.

Two newbies this week: Nizuni Go, a small Japanese restaurant and takeaway in Marylebone with great yakisoba and a terrible website, and Castella Fish Bar, a friendly local chippie in Croydon that does big fat chip shop chips.

Closures: Hippy grocery shop Unpackaged is temporarily shut as it is moving from Amwell Street to the depths of Haggerston. Also, Shad Thames is now minus one swanky Indian restaurant as Lovage has served its last samosa.
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[personal profile] katstevens
The Bookworm, Carshalton, London SM5

Greetings, RGL crew.

This week's featured article is The Bookworm, SM5 2PT, a secondhand bookshop in Carshalton. As far as we can tell it's not one of those bookshops that isn't there when you go back and try and find it again, only to be told by a retired one-eyed sea captain that there Ain't Been A Bookshop Here For Forty Year. Indeed, The Bookworm firmly resides in the correct universe at all times.

New additions to RGL this week include two large pubs Out East (the County Arms in Highams Park and the Larkshall in Chingford); Black Pig With White Pearls, a new tapas place in Stoke Newington and Tsuru, a Japanese restaurant on Bishopsgate with a possible penchant for the music of Will Young.

Closures include the Lock Dining Bar in Tottenham Hale, Joshua's Tea Room (the cafe in Allders in Croydon, which itself has sadly now sold its last cardigan), Shanghai Village in Twickenham and the Lemon Monkey cafe in Stoke Newington. We are also sad to report the closure of Lovely Beer Haven Mason & Taylor in Shoreditch, which will shortly be replaced by a new craft beer bar run by the chaps at Brewdog.
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[personal profile] ewan
Akari, Islington, N1

Apologies for another late update, but not much has been happening on RGL this past week.

The new featured article is Akari, N1 8LZ, a Japanese restaurant just by Essex Road station, more or less in Canonbury/Islington.

The two reported closures are The Stinging Nettle, a Young's pub in Shepherd's Bush (by Goldhawk Road station), and a rubbish one at that on my experience of it, and The Larder, a restaurant in Clerkenwell (Modern European cuisine, I suppose it would be).
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[personal profile] ewan
Nincomsoup, Old Street Station, London EC1

This week's seasonal featured article is a fast-food soup restaurant, Nincomsoup, EC1Y 1BE, located in the subways by Old Street station.

There are no new articles, but there's an update to Akari, a Japanese restaurant on Essex Road in Islington. There are also several transport-related updates: Farringdon station (the main exit is temporarily closed, but there's a new National Rail entrance on Cowcross Street and extended platforms); Blackfriars station (there's a new entrance on the South Bank); Victoria station (escalator refurbishment is complete); and Kensington (Olympia) station (District Line services have been restricted).

Some pubs have been renamed: The Rugby Inn (formerly the Grand Union) in Twickenham; The Clarendon (formerly The Nobody Inn) at Newington Green; and The Ascott (formerly The Manor) in Eastcote.

Also, The Fox pub in Twickenham has now reopened.
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[personal profile] ewan
Sorry for the gap in service, as [personal profile] kake has been rather busy. However, I'm helping out and will run through the weekly updates.

Railway Bell, Hampton, London TW12

The featured article this week is The Railway Bell, TW12 2AP, a Good Beer Guide pub in Hampton.

Since the last update the following pages have been added: The Railway Tavern Ale House, a reopened pub just near Dalston Kingsland with six ales and Thai food; The Breadroom, a cafe in Brixton Market; The White Swan, a Wetherspoon's at Highbury Corner; The Kentish Canteen, a cafe in Kentish Town; Ye Olde Swan, a Greene King pub, and The Red Lion, a slightly better pub, both in Thames Ditton (technically in Surrey); Pizza Napolitana, a takeaway in Croydon; Restaurante Santafereno, a Colombian restaurant in Brixton Village; Moyo-Ma, a Nigerian restaurant in Walworth; Tap East, a microbrewery and bar in Westfield Stratford City (E20); Cook Il Kwan, a Korean restaurant in New Malden; and The Anthologist, a bar in the City. Phew!

Reported closures are: Positively 4th Street, a New York-style bar near Euston; The Queen Dowager, a Young's pub in Teddington; Somers Town Coffee House, a gastropub between the British Library and Euston; and Avella's Cafe, a sandwich shop just off the top of Regent Street.

Future updates should be a little shorter, as we'll try to keep them regular.

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