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[personal profile] katstevens2017-08-14 10:51 pm

New Featured Article - Lituanica, E6 6LA

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] ewan2017-08-08 02:37 pm

New featured article — Karachi Cuisine, Norbury, SW16

Karachi Cuisine, Norbury, London SW16

Welcome back! The featured article this week is Karachi Cuisine, SW16 4XD in exotic zone 3 Norbury (that's in South London, so don't be confused by the name). It's a Pakistani restaurant with excellent reviews from our team of tasters (a "very good" is not dispensed to all and sundry on RGL).

We have three new articles: Munal, a Nepalese/Indian restaurant in Worcester Park with some oddness; Barwell Cafe in sunny Chessington, where you'll get classic greasy spoon vibes but beware some of the ingredients; and Cocum Keralan restaurant in East Molesey. Kerala is a state in South India for the record.

We have an update to Affogato, also in Norbury. I assume they offer an affogato on their menu, but no one amongst us has tried it. Still the other food options seemed to go down well.

Reported permanent closures are to Craft Beer Co. in Clapham (it's quickly morphed into another pub), and Kathiawadi Cuisine in Thornton Heath.

One of our entries has moved, which is Mandalay Golden Myanmar now in Brondesbury NW6 (from Edgware Road in W2), though we don't have much of a write-up.

Finally the cinema in Bermondsey Square has renamed to Kino Bermondsey from the Shortwave Cinema.
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[personal profile] katstevens2017-07-31 07:24 pm

New Featured Article - Prince George, E8 3AG

Prince George, Dalston, E8
Evening all!

This week's featured article is for the Prince George, a friendly local tucked away in the backstreets of trendy Dalston. But I bet you hear about Dalston all the time! What's happening in Epsom, I hear you ask?

Well, if you want to find out, why not have a look at the new page for veggie cafe and deli Organico (featuring a reasonable attempt at vegan ham sandwich) or the updated page for the Marquis of Granby (featuring nduja mayonnaise, not attempting to be vegan in any way). Epsom! It's all go, I tell you. Look out for more exciting developments from the south-west outskirts of London on RGL in the near future!

Other pub news, courtesy of the recent issue of London Drinker: The Cape in Wapping, Corney and Barrow near St Paul's and The Beauchamp in Knightsbridge have all shut; the Charcoal Burner in Sidcup is no longer aflame, and is now just The Charcoal; and the Obelisk in Chingford has reopened as The Mount. The Clifton in St. John's Wood has reopened without changing its name at all (a lack of imagination, perhaps), as has the Crown & Greyhound in Dulwich Village, a lovely sprawling pub which I'm glad to see back on the drinking map, and not just because it's walkable from my house.
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[personal profile] ewan2017-07-25 02:47 pm

New featured article — Som Saa, Spitalfields, E1

IMG_20170714_125716725

This week's featured article is Som Saa, E1 6BD, a well-regarded Thai restaurant that I've been meaning to go to for ages, just on the Spitalfields/Whitechapel border. However, luckily an RGL correspondent has done so, and plenty of positives resulted, albeit clustered along the sour/salty ends of the taste spectrum. Kake also tantalises readers with a suggestion of weird over-intimacy but we shall have to imagine.

Three new articles:

* Lituanica, a Lithuanian restaurant in the charming and delightful eastern oasis of Beckton, and part of what sounds like a Lithuanian department store. Expect potatoes and meat.
* Cafe Le Jardin in Whitechapel. It's a decent greasy spoon, though it is unclear whether there is indeed a garden, but the map doesn't suggest any.
* North End Tavern in Worcester Park. Welcoming yet fairly standard as these kinds of things (chain pubs in suburbia) go.
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[personal profile] katstevens2017-07-17 11:41 pm

New Featured Article - Le Raj, KT17 3LB

Le Raj, Epsom, London KT17
Evening crew!

This week's featured article is for Le Raj in Epsom, a fancy joint that's earned a spot in the Good Curry Guide. The takeaway prices are a bit lower but you'll have to come and get it yourself, as they don't deliver.

New to RGL but certainly not new to me is the Soldier's Return, the third best pub in Ickenham. It's changed a little since I was drinking cheap lager there in the '90s - the tie's changed from Courage to Greene King, and they've apparently got rid of the (really quite manky) carpet. Also new is Karachi Cuisine in Norbury, a child-friendly Pakistani restaurant that does an interesting-sounding traditional breakfast on weekends. Try the chickpeas!

Finally, the Michelin-starred Dabbous in Fitzrovia has shut. Apparently the team will be opening a new (hopefully less noisy) restaurant next year.
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[personal profile] ewan2017-07-12 06:52 am

New featured article — Ferry House, Isle of Dogs, E14

Hello and welcome back and sorry for the delay this week; things got busy at work at then... Oh well.

Ferry House, Isle of Dogs, London E14

So the featured article this week is The Ferry House, E14 3DT, a pub on the Isle of Dogs, still very traditional though with fewer dartboards and less sticky carpet than that might usually entail. It's got Courage beer and Sunday roast, though.

One new article is Pivaz, in London-adjacent and Central Line-terminating Epping. It's a somewhat upmarket Turkish restaurant, with tasty breakfast options and attentive staff.

Our reported permanent closures are The Cricketers, a small pub in Croydon (just near the Lebanon Road tram stop), and Dirty Burger in Kentish Town, though it was never much more than an outhouse shack and I was a meat-eater the last time I went there, giving a sense of its long and storied existence (i.e. it's several years old).

Finally, we can report the reopening of Affogato, a Norbury coffee shop and cafe, so there's no reason now to cancel all your Norbury travel plans this summer.
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[personal profile] katstevens2017-06-26 12:49 pm

New Featured Article - Crown & Pepper, CR3 6RA

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] ewan2017-06-13 08:00 am

New featured article — Banh Mi 108, Feltham, TW13

Welcome back!

Banh Mi 108, Feltham, London TW13

This week's featured article is Banh Mi 108, TW13 4HE. It's a Vietnamese cafe in Feltham. That first part may be clear from the name, and indeed they do banh mi baguettes, including a vegetarian one. I'm not sure what the 108 refers to though. Why not visit and figure it out? It doesn't appear to be the address though.

There are three new articles. One is Curzon Aldgate, a branch of the boutique cinema chain which opened earlier this year in... wait for it... Aldgate! It's quite a nice place (if pricy obviously). A second cinema is at the Close-Up Film Centre in Shoreditch, and yes I added both these entries because I went to my first film at Close-Up just this past week. Anyway, it's also a video rental library (those still exist!) and a cafe, and I'm a member.

Finally for the new entries, there's Hubbub, a cafe/bar on the Isle of Dogs. It's in a lovely looking building.

There's a significant update to the Ferry House entry, also on the Isle of Dogs, a very old pub given a light makeover.

Reported permanent closures are Shu Castle, a Sichuan restaurant on the Old Kent Road, and The Albion pub in Bethnal Green.

Finally, one pub to reopen is The Marquis of Wellington, once a dowdy-looking backstreets Bermondsey local which now finds itself adjacent to all the coolest new breweries and food vendors along Druid St, so it's been given a makeover befitting that location.
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[personal profile] katstevens2017-06-05 09:29 pm

New Featured Article - King & Queen, W1W 6DL

King and Queen, Fitzrovia, W1
Evening crew, here's another update to kick off your week, featuring 100% pub content.

Our featured article is for a pub that's become one of my 'old reliables' over the years, the King and Queen in Fitzrovia. A haven for office workers and weekend rugby-watchers requiring no-nonsense drinking, it was mere 3 minutes away from my (now-demolished) office back in the 2000s. It has offered the same well-kept pints of Tribute, scuzzy carpet and bookable upstairs room for as long as I can remember.

Sadly another 'old reliable' on the other side of Tottenham Court Road has closed - the Jeremy Bentham is now a Simmons bar (I doubt they've kept the shrunken wax head which looks more like Tim Rice than Jezza B). Other closures include the Station Tavern in Brimsdown, the Well in Clerkenwell, the Balham Arms (guess where), and the Crown near Hillingdon Hospital.

Some slightly more cheering news from Muswell Hill, where the Victoria Stakes has reopened after a fire. The Camel & Artichoke in Waterloo has also reopened, while the Melbourne in Wallington is now The Star and the Norbiton & Dragon in Kingston has dropped any pretense at mythology to become merely The Norbiton. I guess I'll now have to get my dragon content from Duolingo Welsh, which seems very keen that I learn the phrase "mae ddraig goch yn ddiflas" (hashtag #notalldragons).
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[personal profile] ewan2017-05-30 08:43 am

New featured article — Sai Mantra, Gants Hill, IG2

Welcome back after a long bank holiday weekend (unless you were freelancing, in which case I suppose weekends don't make much difference).

Sai Mantra, Gants Hill, London IG2

This week's featured article is Sai Mantra, IG2 6HW, an Indian/Sri Lankan restaurant with some Indo-Chinese dishes too, in easterly Gants Hill. It's a bit nice inside, and does a chilli mogo starter you may just want to keep eating.

One new article is Patisserie Joie de Vie in (High) Barnet. Get your bakery and crepe/galette needs sorted if you're out this way.

Finally, an update to The Butcher's Arms, a pub also out that way. It's all nicely refurbished, but you may be listening to sport at a higher volume than is ideal. (I'll let you decide what constitutes an ideal volume for sport.)
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[personal profile] ewan2017-05-02 03:45 pm

New featured article — Shree Krishna Vada Pav, Harrow, HA1

Hello and welcome back from a long weekend.

Shree Krishna Vada Pav, Harrow, London HA1

This week's featured article is Shree Krishna Vada Pav, HA1 2TY, an Indian vegetarian cafe in a casual location in Harrow. It moved recently from another location nearby, and it has a decent vada pav (as you'd hope for given the name of the place). All pretty good value it seems.

We have not two, not three but FOUR new articles! There's The Pembroke, a pub in Coulsdon. Alright beer; seems child friendly. And then there's Archie's, a cafe/bar in Deptford -- a railway arch to be precise, HENCE THE NAME. Pretty good sandwiches and friendly service! Also, Halwa Poori House in Thornton Heath does Pakistani food with sparkly floor tiles and mild lukewarm curry. Finally, Canary Cafe, a greasy spoon in South Croydon. There's a solid selection of the usual staples.
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[personal profile] katstevens2017-04-24 10:31 pm

New Featured Article - Squires, E16 1EW

Squires, Canning Town, London E16

Evening RGL crew!

This week's featured article is for Squires, a Nigerian restaurant in Canning Town serving at least two different types of pounded yam! I couldn't say if this is a 'typical Naija restaurant' as stated in the window but there are branches dotted around East and South London if you want to find out for yourself. If your prefer a cup of tea in Forest Hill instead, we have a new page for the Teapot cafe, which does a decent panini too.

Pub news! Famed Fitzrovia pie-haunt the Newman Arms is shut for a refurb, as is the Duke of Argyll (a Sam Smiths) in Soho. The Dartmouth Arms in Tufnell Park, the Widow's Son in Bow, the Lucky Rover in Chessington and the Great Northern Railway Tavern in Hornsey have all recently reopened - the latter is now owned by Fuller's, so expect the beer selection to be a little different.

However: the great pub deity giveth, and it taketh away again. The Taylor Walker-owned Devereux has shut, as has the Three Horseshoes in Southall. Also closed for good is Canal 125 on the Caledonian Road, once home to various club nights run by denizens of Livejournal. As small venues go it was pretty terrible, and I'm amazed it kept going that long. Let's hope whatever replaces it is better!
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[personal profile] ewan2017-04-12 09:37 am

New featured article — Cah Chi, Earlsfield, SW18

Hello all, and apologies for the particular delay this week, caused by jet lag (on my behalf).

at Cah Chi, Earlsfield, London SW18

This week's featured article is a Korean restaurant in Earlsfield called Cah Chi, SW18 4HP. Dumplings, noodles, efficient service and K-pop are your selling points for making the southwestern trek.

There's one reported closure, of Hason Raja, a Bangladeshi restaurant in Holborn described by our reviewer as "OK".

There's an update to the reopened The Beehive gastropub in Marylebone.

Finally an art materials shop which was by Aldgate then Brick Lane, called Atlantis Art, has moved premises to Old Street.
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[personal profile] katstevens2017-04-03 10:46 pm

New Featured Article - Provender, E11 2AA

Provender, Wanstead, London E11

Evening folks!

This week's featured article is for Provender, which is not a gritty archeological crime series on ITV3 but a French restaurant in Wanstead with quality napkins and tasty souffles! (Next time on Provender: Detective Ian Provender eats some delicious prawns and then discovers a mysterious amulet on Wanstead Flats - could this be linked to the murder??)

New this week are entries for Battersea Pie Station in Covent Garden, which I keep calling Battersea Stodge Station in my mind (the pies are stodgy but in a good way), and the Crown & Pepper pub in Caterham, which also has a restaurant section serving Indian and Indian/Chinese food.

Affogato in Norbury is temporarily closed while they sort out the drains and the licensing (yikes), but it's good to see the Catford Bridge Tavern reopening. It's no longer an Antic pub but hopefully the new owners will have retained its friendly atmosphere and spacious interior.

Finally, here at RGL Towers we mourn the passing of the best named combination-cafe-and-juice-bar in South Croydon, Juicy Squeeze. A carton of Five Alive just won't cut it anymore.
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[personal profile] ewan2017-03-27 04:37 pm

New featured article — Napura, Nunhead, SE15

Welcome back to another week of RGL updates!

Napura, Nunhead, London SE15

This week's featured article is Napura, SE15 3QF, a Portuguese restaurant in officially the best area of London, Nunhead. This is official because I say it is, so I'll brook no disputes. I wager it's changed since I lived there, though this was a Portuguese restaurant back then. Go get yrself a bacalhau. (The historical verdict, which may not have changed much, is that there's less for those non-meat-eaters such as myself.)

But that's fine because our updated article is Shree Krishna Vada Pav, a Mumbai-centric cafe which is totally vegetarian, though you have to travel a bit further from Nunhead, as it's in Harrow. It will, however, satisfy all your carbs-in-carbs needs.

Finally, just reopened is iconic pub The Half Moon in Herne Hill, which has been closed for nigh on four years now, so its reopening (as a Fuller's pub) is welcome.
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[personal profile] katstevens2017-03-20 10:48 pm

New Featured Article - Stuffins Unlimited, CR0 1EA

Stuffins Unlimited, Croydon, London CR0

Evening RGL crew!

This week's featured article is for the legendary Stuffins Unlimited in Croydon. This sandwich shop is clearly inspired by the great 2 Unlimited not just in name, but in its cheerful personnel, quick-moving queue, boshing specials and hardcore rave breakfast baps (maybe). Get Bready For This!

First among a bunch of new articles on RGL this week is a new branch of the Nordic Bakery in Seven Dials. I am still recovering from the last time I had one of their extremely strong coffees at the Golden Square branch (approx 8 years ago). The coffee strength at Coffee Express in Belvedere is as yet unknown, but they'll do a weak cup of tea if you ask for one. (If you're after something stronger in DA17, the Belvedere Hotel pub has reopened.)

Elsewhere, in Brixton's Market Row there's Brazilian food at Carioca, while Earlsfield's Cah Chi will do you a decent beef japchae. Last but not least is the Running Horses pub in Erith. Where is Erith, I hear you ask? Well, I was at that pub myself just yesterday and I ate a large sausage roll, but it was dark outside and I got lost on the way, so I couldn't tell you exactly how I got there. Erith: shrouded in mystery! Or you could get the train.
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[personal profile] ewan2017-03-14 04:03 pm

New featured article — Cristina's, Barking, IG11

Hello again RGLers! No reported closures this week!

Cristina’s, Barking, London IG11

This week's featured article is Cristina's, IG11 8AW, a steak restaurant in Barking. It's child-friendly, not too loud, they have a lunch deal, and if you like steaks then it's probably worth your time. It is, after all, as they say, the "casual steakhouse".

One new article is Sai Mantra, an Indian/Sri Lankan restaurant in Gants Hill, sticking with the outer East London theme. Decent seafood roti, but it sounds like chilli mogo is the thing.

Finally, two updates are to Wanstead's Wetherspoons The George, and Chigwell's King William IV.
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[personal profile] katstevens2017-03-06 10:40 pm

New Featured Article - Candid Cafe, EC1V 1NQ

candid cafe entranceway
Photo by @quitepeculiar, used under Creative Commons license

Evening everyone! This week's featured article is for Candid Cafe in Angel. I'm glad it's candid in the secluded hideaway sense rather than the hidden camera practical joke sense. As it is, you can enjoy your tea and cake while nosing at the people below queuing for terrible goth gigs at Electrowerkz without worrying about Jeremy Beadle suddenly popping up from behind a pot plant. (I apologise for introducing this nightmare scene into your brains, dear readers.)

There's a brand new page for Tre Viet in Hackney, a noisy but highly enjoyable Vietnamese restaurant that will do you a massive bowl of pho AND bring the bill really quickly once you've asked for it. Cracking. Also new is Frank's Cafe in Limehouse, a no-frills greasy spoon with some room for improvement in their set breakfast ingredients.

Denizens of North East London will surely already be celebrating the full reopening of the Goblin line following electrification works - no longer will you have to get the strength-sapping 41 bus through the endless traffic at Turnpike Lane when a quick jaunt from Crouch Hill to South Tottenham will do the trick nicely. Also reopened is the Beehive in Marylebone. I think this is the first week for ages that we've had more reopenings than closures! Hurray!
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[personal profile] ewan2017-02-28 02:09 pm

New featured article — Rial Cafe, West Ham, E15

Welcome back!

RU@D Cafe, West Ham, London E15

This week's featured article is Rial Cafe, E15 3BT, or maybe Ruad Cafe if you like. It's a cafe in West Ham with eclectic furniture and tasty lunches.

Our two additions are a MICROPUB in Anerley, the Douglas Fir (run by Gipsy Hill and is fairly minimal in decor, but good beers and WiFi), and Resham in Norbury (an Indian restaurant which specialises in Indian-style Chinese food).

Three reported closures are The Belvedere Hotel in Belvedere (which is near Erith, if that helps?), Beer Rebellion in Sydenham (short lived sadly!) and The Camel and Artichoke behind Waterloo station.

Finally the very fine Claret Free House in Addiscombe is now called The Claret and Ale.
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[personal profile] katstevens2017-02-13 06:42 pm

New Featured Article - Simpson's, EC3V 9DR

Simpson's Tavern, Cornhill, London EC3

Evening RGLers! This week's featured article is for Simpson's, a venerable old pub in the City which is even older than Jonathan the tortoise. It's closed on weekends but makes up for it by opening early for breakfast during the week - worth a visit if you're after a fry-up in EC3.

A trio of new pages to report: Maria and Aldo's Coffee Bar in Beckenham, a pleasant local cafe with a vintage feel; De-Lites, a small Bengali cafe/takeaway near Shadwell station, and Crystal Palace Market, which is not a market at all, but a busy gastropub-style restaurant and bar. Apparently they do oysters! (I did not try the oysters.)

Finally, in lift refurbishment news, the lifts have now been refurbished at Lambeth North tube, and it's fully reopened.

The blog is taking a short break next week - we'll be back in a fortnight!