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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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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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at the Aleksander, Twickenham, London TW1

Evening RGL crew!

This week's featured article is for the Aleksander, a Good Beer Guide pub in St Margaret's, which also does good Italian food. Did you know that St Margaret is the patron saint of both Lowestoft and kidney disease? What a combination of responsibilities that must be.

New to RGL is A Wong, a modern (and busy) Chinese restaurant in Victoria with a range of tasty-sounding dim sum including quail egg croquette puffs. The service appears to be a bit hit and miss though.

Some news from my old North London haunt of Stoke Newington: the Defoe pub (which closed over the summer) is about to reopen as the Stoke Newington Tea House, which, while still a pub, claims to serve a hundred different types of tea. I didn't even know there *were* a hundred different types of tea. I wonder if they do PG Tips?
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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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Gojo, Ladbroke Grove, London W10

Afternoon everyone!

This week's featured article is for Gojo, an Ethiopian bar and restaurant near Ladbroke Grove. If you wend your way down the rather precarious staircase, you'll be rewarded with all manner of lovely-sounding things to go with your injera, including gomen wot, misir wot and shiro wot. Captain Sensible would be delighted*!

Oui Madame in Stoke Newington is now Oui Monsieur! Honorifics aside, no other changes are apparent. Plus ça change, plus c'est la même chose! Finally, Portal in Clerkenwell closed earlier this year.

The RGL blog will return after the May Bank Holiday - see you then.

(*Auto-playing Youtube link warning.)
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Station Hotel, Hither Green, London SE13

Hello friends!

We have a double edition for the holiday period (Happy Winterval! Merry Festivus!). The featured article for this special festive edition is The Station Hotel, SE13 5NB. It's bright airy pub near Hither Green station with plenty of ales, so, er, get thee thither.

There are FOUR new articles...

Kat went to Kauri Tree Cafe in Stoke Newington, a cash-based artisanal outpost.

I visited the Beer Shop, which despite the name is more of a micropub in a converted shop overlooking Nunhead Green (they have plenty of bottles too, which I'm presuming you can takeaway).

Kake went to Amber Tree Cafe in Deptford, a narrow little cafe with friendly staff in a former pub building. She also visited Gifto's Lahore Karahi in Southall, a Punjabi restaurant with communal tables and decent food.

Finally, there's been an update to the Dar Marrakech write-up, a Moroccan/Lebanese restaurant in Stratford.
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Hello all! We've got a full update this week, as we're catching up with various changes to pubs from London Drinker magazine.

Old Tom's Bar, Leadenhall Market, London EC3

The featured article this week is a little dive bar under the Lamb Tavern in Leadenhall Market, namely Old Tom's Bar, EC3V 1LR. They have ales from the Young's range and a short list of food options. Get away from the bustle.

One new article is The Star at Night, a coffee house by day in Soho but at night a gin bar. Many gins! Drink gin! (It's not a candidate for a good photo of the establishment until they finish the Crossrail works though.)

There's a temporary closure to mark for The Railway in West Hampstead, until March next year.

The following pubs have all closed since we last visited:
* The Newton Arms out back of Covent Garden, near Holborn;
* The Old Loyal Britons in Greenwich;
* The Elephant on Fenchurch Street;
* The Crown and Greyhound in Dulwich Village (though this is due to reopen in 2016);
* The Oakhill in Beckenham;
* Glow Lounge in Clapham;
* The Gate bar on Newington Green; and
* The Florence off Upper Street in Islington.

Finally a few renamings:
* Finch's in Moorgate (was The Master Gunner);
* The Pleasure Boat in Alperton (now The Boat);
* The Express Tavern by Kew Bridge (now The Express Ale and Cider House); and
* The Thatched House by Ravenscourt Park station in Hammersmith (now The Butcher's Hook).
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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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Hello again! Short update this week.

Untitled

This week's featured article is a nicely refurbished and rather nice pub out WEST called The Finborough Arms, SW10 9ED. It's out near West Brompton, but worth a visit if you're in the area. Pubgoers may recognise the landlord from his other pub, The Gunmakers Arms in Clerkenwell/Holborn.

Only one other change is a new article for Spence Bakery in North-East London's Stoke Newington, recommended for specialty bread, chaotic queuing and oversized coffee cups.
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Carpenters' Arms, Marylebone, W1

Hello RGL crew!

This week's featured article is for the Carpenter's Arms near Marble Arch. It's in the Good Beer Guide, and you're likely to find several different ales on the pumps there. It can get quite busy if there's people watching sport on the telly, though.

We have new articles for the Windsor Castle in Marylebone (definitely of interest if you are a fan of moustaches), and the excitably-named Oui Madame!, a friendly French bistro and cocktail bar in Stoke Newington.

Finally, the Manor Arms in Clapham has closed, and is now a branch of the Craft Beer Co. empire. This seems to have had a detrimental effect on the poor old Bread and Roses just up the road, which was almost completely empty when your trusty RGL blogging team visited it yesterday lunchtime...
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Crown and Sceptre, South Croydon, CR2

Afternoon RGL crew! We're back from our mini-break and London's looking pretty nice out there in the sunshine, isn't it?

This week's featured article is the Crown & Sceptre, CR2 6RB, a Fuller's pub in Croydon. It's a bit smaller than most of the Fuller's pubs I frequent, but the last time I went there my pint of Chiswick went down a treat. Their macaroni cheese has mustard in it - depending on your point of view this might be an AMAZING thing or a TERRIBLE thing, but either way, now you know about it.

I am proud to include my local haunt Best Turkish Kebab in Stoke Newington as one of our new articles. The shish is almost as good as the picture of Ainsley Harriot they have on the wall! Also new is Fishworks in Marylebone, a fancy-ish restaurant on the High Street that focuses on sustainably-sourced fish and seafood.

Clearing up confusion in Maida Vale is the Union Tavern, another Fuller's pub which has changed its moniker from the 'Grand Union' -- a sensible move considering it is neither a type of 4-way railway junction, a burger chain nor a sizeable means of organising a workforce. Now if only we could get the nearby Grand Union Canal's name changed too, that would be perfect.

Finally, we have a reopened and refurbished pub (hurrah!) in the shape of the Windsor Castle on the Lower Clapton Road in Hackney. According to our RGL pub expert it now 'looks quite nice' and 'was quite busy'. Good to know!
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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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Fish and Grill, Croydon, CR0

This week's featured article is Fish and Grill, CR0 1DP. It is a fish and meat restaurant in Croydon, related to some upmarket ones in Chiswick and Sutton. It does good fish, you'll be pleased to hear.

New entries are: Sutton and Sons, a fish & chips shop in Stoke Newington; the Bookseller Crow on the Hill, a book shop in Crystal Palace; and Good Taste, a deli also in Crystal Palace.

Following the closure of the inner South London loop from London Victoria to London Bridge via Peckham Rye, and its replacement with an extension to the London Overground's East London Line, taking it from Surrey Quays to Clapham Junction, there are updates to the South London Line and East London Line entries.

The one reported closure is Maggie's Bar in Stoke Newington, which closed years ago.

Finally, The Catford Bridge Tavern has reopened after a brief period of closure, and we may be thankful, though I heard today that Mr Lawrence off licence in nearby Brockley is going to close in the New Year. It is a rollercoaster ride of alcohol-related emotions in south London.
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2013 Good Beer Guide cover

Hello! Unusually this week the featured article is not a place but a category: the Good Beer Guide 2013. Every year on the release of this guide, Kake uploads the 2013 pub information, and as a result a number of new pages are created in RGL (which she and other contributors try to visit before the publication date).

It's worth pointing out that the new articles that have been added as a result do not represent all the new 2013 GBG pubs, just the ones which didn't already have a page on RGL.

The new articles which are not GBG-related are: Dost, an Indian street food restaurant in Uxbridge; Bookworm, a second-hand bookshop in Carshalton; Raizes, a Brazilian restaurant in Bethnal Green; and Cafe Z Bar, a greasy spoon cafe in Stoke Newington.

So, those new GBG articles:
* All Inn One in Forest Hill;
* The Angel in Hayes End;
* The Argyll Arms in Soho;
* The Barnsbury in, er, oh guess;
* The Beehive in Bedfont;
* The Black Lion in Essex's Epping.
* The Botanist in Kew;
* The Coal Hole on the Strand;
* The Elm Park Tavern in Brixton;
* The Forester in West Ealing;
* The Grenadier in Belgravia;
* The Greyhound in Keston;
* The Hare in Bethnal Green;
* Howl at the Moon in Hoxton;
* Noble Green Wines, an off licence (not a pub) in Hampton Hill;
* The Old Sergeant in Wandsworth;
* The Queen's Head in Downe;
* The Railway Hotel in West Wickham;
* The Rising Sun in Surrey's Epsom;
* The Sir Michael Balcon in Ealing;
* The Sun in Carshalton;
* The Sussex Arms in Twickenham;
* The Swan in Hammersmith;
* The Three Greyhounds in Soho;
* The Walnut Tree in Leytonstone; and
* The Windmill in Mitcham.

No closures reported this week.
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Atlas, Earl's Court, SW6

This week's featured article is a ivy-covered pub in West Brompton, The Atlas, SW6 1RX. It's many years since it's been in the Good Beer Guide, but it's decent.

Two new additions are Crate, a brewpub and pizzeria in a sort of West Coast US style, out in a former industrial unit of Hackney Wick; and Court Cafe, a greasy spoon by Elephant & Castle.

We've now marked Lemon Monkey in Stoke Newington as closed, because it was replaced by the Monkey Bar some time ago. It still serves cake and coffee for the daytime crowd, so it's apparently not completely different.

Also, an online commenter points out that The Castle pub in Battersea is actually still open, despite closure earlier this year due to being sold to developers. It's still under threat though, so good luck to them!
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This week's featured article is Craft Beer Co., EC1N 7TR, a pub focused on craft beer (cask and keg), based in the Hatton Garden area of Clerkenwell. It's run by the people behind Cask in Pimlico, another fine pub if you like your beer.

Craft Beer Co. has 16 handpulls for ale, and 21 keg beer fonts, all dispensing beers from the UK as well as specially-imported beers from Europe and Asia, some of which aren't available anywhere else in the UK.


Recent additions to RGL include the Brownswood, a recently-relaunched pub on the borders of Finsbury Park; the Beauchamp, a pub in Knightsbridge; the Waddon, a pub in, guess where, Waddon; the Tamworth Arms, a pub in Croydon; and Priya, which is not a pub, but a South Indian and Sri Lankan restaurant in Walthamstow.

We also added all the new DLR stations: Star Lane, Abbey Road, Stratford High Street, and Stratford International, though the individual writeups are much less interesting than the DLR category map.

One permanent closure reported: the Railway pub in Mortlake.

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[personal profile] kake

This week's featured article is Le Wei Xiang, SE13 5PT, a Chinese restaurant in Lewisham offering Sichuan and Dongbei (northeastern Chinese) specialties.

Its Chinese name is 樂味香 (lè wèi xiāng), and this is actually the only name on the frontage, though it also goes by the English names of "Le Wei Xiang" and the rather idiosyncratically-translated "Happy Smell".

The menu includes both the usual Anglicised Chinese restaurant items, and a separate section labelled "Genuine Chinese Tastes" with all the good stuff, including pork with mashed garlic, pig's blood soup, strange-flavour chicken, tiger salad, and so on.


Recent additions to RGL include African Kitchen on Drummond Street, Efe in Stoke Newington, Kazan near Victoria, and Harrow Inn in Cheam.

We've also updated a number of stub pages for other pubs in Cheam: the Prince Albert, the Railway, and the Claret Wine Bar.

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