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[personal profile] katstevens
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] katstevens
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] ewan
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] katstevens
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] katstevens
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!
katstevens: (dogswim)
[personal profile] katstevens
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!
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[personal profile] katstevens
Ram's, Kenton, London HA3

Evening all!

This week's featured article is for Ram's in Kenton, a vegetarian Indian restaurant and sweet shop with a decent all-you-can-eat buffet. Unlimited bread! There are also two new pages on RGL: Cactus Grill in Wallington serves Mexican/American food with a lunchtime meal deal, and Hap Lee in Norbury does the usual Anglo-Chinese cuisine (maybe skip the aubergine).

There's an update for the Orange Room in Mile End, just around the corner from a house where approximately half the population of Livejournal has lived at one point or another, including this author. I'm pretty sure there wasn't a local Lebanese mezze place at the time - but now there is!

Several pub closures to report: the Hatchet near Mansion House, the Chequers in Hendon, and the Greenwich Pensioner in... wait for it... Poplar! (Come on, why would you think a Greenwich Pensioner might be in Greenwich?) The Victoria Stakes in Muswell Hill is also temporarily shut following a fire, but the Good Samaritan in Whitechapel has reopened: very handy for a pre- or post-Tayyabs pint.
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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).
katstevens: (dogswim)
[personal profile] katstevens
CoffeE7, Forest Gate, London E7

Evening everyone!

This week's featured article is for CoffeE7 in Forest Gate, a veggie cafe with mild TARDIS-like properties. It is part of the Suspended Coffees scheme, where you can pay for an extra coffee (or tea, or a sandwich), to be claimed at some point by whoever needs it.

If you're after some quality Caribbean food in Finsbury Park, you could do worse than the subject of our newest page, Lulu's Caribbean Cuisine on Stroud Green Road. The menu has an entire 'Jerk Pit' section! I am fairly sure I saw Jerk Pit supporting my ex's mate's skatepunk band at the Bull & Gate in 1999.

The nearly-alliterative BG Zakuska Bulgarian Breakfast in Barking has had an update, as has the Mute Swan pub near Hampton Court Palace. In Angel, One and One (it's had many names over the years; I will always know it as 'the vegan buffet place') has reopened after a refurb, but is apparently not 100% vegan these days, so do make sure your mock duck is indeed mock. Finally, the Devonshire pub in Balham is also having a refurb, and is due to reopen in November.
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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
Thai Smile, Hammersmith, London W6

This week's update features Thai Smile, W6 9NH, a Thai supermarket, though it has plenty of other regional stuff. Pastes! Sauces! Seasonings! Frozen Things! Tofu! Strange herbs!

There are four new articles: Fish Kitchen in Norbiton, like an upmarket chippie; Saints and Sinners pub in Croydon, lacking ale though; Santok Maa's vegetarian Indian in Thornton Heath, with friendly staff, though not fully structurally sound puri; and Bus cafe towards the Selhurst end of Croydon, which is in a bus.

We have significant updates to The Norbiton and Dragon pub; The Willoughby Arms pub in Kingston; The Park Tavern pub in Kingston; and The Boaters Inn pub in Kingston. Someone's been visiting the area, I'll wager...

Temporary closure is reported for The Queen's Head pub in Kingston. Permanent closures are: Snackpot (in Norbiton); Magma Ghanaian restaurant (in Thornton Heath); and The Gatehouse (in Highgate), which is still a pub just not a Wetherspoons so is DEAD TO US.

Finally is the reported reopening of Na Pura Portuguese cafe in Nunhead.
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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] katstevens
Fee & Brown, Beckenham, London BR3

Kicking off a bumper round-up this week, our featured article is for Fee and Brown, a modern cafe in Beckenham specialising in fancy teas - worth a trip down for tea enthusiasts.

Lots happening in Hammersmith! We have new pages for Somali restaurant Village, veggie/vegan shop Bushwacker Wholefoods, and the Thai Smile supermarket. There’s an update for the Distillers Fuller’s pub following a visit; the Cineworld is closing in April; Thai restaurant Noodles Magic has closed, and Books For Amnesty has reopened a couple of doors down from its old home on King Street. Phew - W6 in flux!

Elsewhere, Pitt Cue Co has moved from Soho to larger premises in Liverpool Street (I wonder if that’ll make the queues any shorter). There's a brand new article for We Brought Beer, a craft beer and brewing supplies shop in Balham. In Bermondsey, Lou Farrow’s Pie & Mash Shop has shut, as has Mirch Masala in Croydon and the Harry Ramsden’s kiosk in Euston station.

Last but not least, my favourite new article name in RGL history has to go to Croydon’s Juicy Squeeze. I’ll leave you to find out what exactly Juicy Squeeze has to offer by clicking on the link.
katstevens: (dogswim)
[personal profile] katstevens
A Wong, Victoria, London SW1
Evening everyone!

This week’s featured article is for A Wong, a modern Chinese restaurant in Victoria - quite different in style to last week's featured Chinese restaurant! There’s plenty of interesting dim sum on offer - the mushroom and truffle steamed bun sounds like a good choice.

There’s a brand new page for the new Curzon cinema inside the Goldsmiths campus, in New Cross. Meanwhile the New Cross Turnpike is not actually in New Cross but in Welling, and is now reopened after last year’s fire.

Some pub closures to report: the Obelisk in Chingford is on the market, and Wetherspoons have sold both the Cap In Hand in Southborough, the Plough and Harrow in Hammersmith and the Picture Palace in Ponders End.
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[personal profile] ewan
We have a rather pub-heavy week of updates this week!

Prince Albert (Rose's), Woolwich, SE18

Featured article is The Prince Albert, SE18 6NE, a pub in Woolwich which often goes by the name "Rose's". It's a single-room pub, it does crusty rolls, you'll get a pint of real ale, and it's proper trad.

New articles are: The Rochester Castle (the "Roch" if you live nearby) in London's trendy Stoke Newington, a classic 'Spoons and the oldest one that's still part of the chain (also one of the few that's in an actual pub building). There's also the Dalston branch of the Diner chain, which does the usual 50s Americana vibe with a menu to match, though it seems pricy.

Reported closures are The Cock Tavern under Smithfield Market (this one closed over a year ago apparently), and The Tamworth Arms in Croydon. The latter was a lovely old traditional Young's house, though I wouldn't be surprised if it reappears with a major facelift, as per other pubs in that chain (see the featured article from two weeks' ago). We also believe that Na Pura Portuguese cafe in Nunhead has closed.

On the plus side of the ledger, The Railway in West Hampstead has reopened following a period of refurbishment.

Finally, there are updates to two more pubs after recent visits: the weirdly sanitised and family-friendly The Dulwich Wood House in Sydenham; and The Old Orchard in Harefield, which has big terraces and beautiful views.
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[personal profile] ewan
Ergon

Hello from your belated RGL updates team!

If you're like me, you may be thinking that the featured article this week is some kind of Scandinavian design consultancy (my mind goes straight to "ergonomic", which sort of suggests that kind of thing, but maybe that's just me). Well, fear not, for Ergon, W1U 1BP is a Greek restaurant and deli in Marylebone. It's pretty good value according to my fellow correspondent, but keep an eye on what you're being served.

We have two (albeit related) new articles: one for the Broca cafe in Brockley, home of perky jazz, good service and tasty thick-cut sandwiches; the other for Broca Food Market, a hippy food shop on the other side of the tracks (literally), but run by the same people.

Following refurbishment, the Imperial War Museum in Lambeth has reopened.

Finally, Nivla Restaurant in Camberwell has now closed, so you will need to do further research for your Sierra Leonean eating options in London.
katstevens: (dogswim)
[personal profile] katstevens
Trishna

Afternoon everyone! This week's featured article is for Trishna, a fancy Indian restaurant in Marylebone which has a Michelin star, but manages to be relaxed and good value for money. I'd definitely recommend a visit if you have several hours to spare and a hearty appetite.

New on RGL this week is the Gate in Islington, a classy vegetarian restaurant which will happily suit omnivores, vegans and gluten-avoiders alike. Slightly less fancy is Galleria, a Persian restaurant also in Marylebone (a short walk away from Trishna, on the other side of the High Street - you can probably guess mine and [personal profile] ewan's maximum lunch break radius), which will supply you with more rice than you could possibly ever want in one meal.

Finally, some good news for North Finchley residents: the Bohemia pub has reopened.
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[personal profile] ewan
Hello there, sorry for the delay. Kake tells me what's in the charts this week and it always then gets lost in the depthless mess that is currently my inbox. So this week's featured article is...

Ship and Shovell, Strand, WC2

... the Ship and Shovell, WC2N 5PH, a charming and slightly hidden little pub, one of the few remaining outposts for Hall & Woodhouse (aka Badger) beers in the capital, as yet unsullied by any word of "craft" or the like. Just a row of handpulls dispensing classic and well-kept English bitters and pales (or "boring brown ales", though I don't mean that as any disrespect: I love the BBB). The pub is rather more interesting for its unusual twin-site arrangement, taking up buildings on both sides of the little alleyway. The north has the main bar, the south has the "Crow's Nest" upstairs.

Our one new article this week is for Garden Community Cafe, a community-focused greasy spoon by Prince Regent DLR out there past Canning Town.

Two reported permanent closures are The Old White Bear in Hampstead (which we felt had gone downhill since it was Ye Olde White Bear and was a proper real ale pub), and The Clifton in St John's Wood, one of very few pubs in the area and a delightful little getaway, so it's particularly sad to see this one go.

Finally, two more impending pub closures. There's The Star, also in St John's Wood because clearly nobody is drinking there anymore, or (more likely) property is worth more as residences. And then there's The Sekforde Arms in Clerkenwell, which your correspondent only visited for the first time a couple of years ago, and what a delightful unpretentious boozer it is, serving tip top Young's beers, and now sadly looking like it'll become a restaurant after only 185 years of sterling service to drinkers.

But at least there's a couple of reopenings, both following refurbishments, and both out in Twickenham: The Prince Blucher and The Eel Pie.
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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.
katstevens: (dogswim)
[personal profile] katstevens
black cat cafe

Hello RGL crew! This is the last update of 2013, and there's plenty to report.

Our featured article for the next three weeks is the Black Cat Cafe, a vegan co-operative on the site of the old Pogo Cafe, which sounds like a very pleasant place to spend an afternoon chatting over tea and cake.

Our sources tell us that banh mi and other Vietnamese dishes will soon be back on the menu at Panda Panda in Deptford. New year, new noodles!

Unfortunately the following won't be around in 2014: the Old Duke of Cambridge in Bow is likely to be turned into flats, as will the Whitesmiths Arms in Borough (shame - they had a great jukebox) and the Victoria Cross in Thornton Heath. London is certainly short of decent, affordable flats, but at this rate it will be short of decent, affordable pubs too...

The Lamb Brewery pub in Chiswick has changed its name to simply 'The Lamb'. It's no longer a brewery, so fair enough! This follows its takeover by the Mitchell & Butlers chain (along with other former Convivial London Pubs outlets The Botanist, the Crown and Anchor and the Clifton, the latter of which may not yet have reopened after its sale).

Finally, the Pilot Inn in Greenwich has reopened after a refurb. We have no idea what it's like now! There could be a cross-dimensional portal in the ladies' for all we know. If you're in SE10 over the festive period, why not pop in and check it out for us?

Thanks again to everyone who's contributed to RGL over the last year, especially [personal profile] kake and [personal profile] bob (and of course my co-blogger [personal profile] ewan!) for keeping everything running smoothly. See you in the new year!

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