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Gidea Park Micropub, Gidea Park, London RM2

Hi RGL readers!

This week's featured article is for the Gidea Park Micropub, where there's plenty of beer and a variety of pork pies on offer. There's a dartboard too, which always worries me a bit when space is at a premium. Like those beds that fold up vertically into a cupboard - it's just asking for trouble.

There's more microscopic beer in Penge, at the Southey Brewing Tap Room, for which we have a new page. The decor may be a little basic but their beers are fresh and tasty, just like Penge itself. There are also two new pages for cafés in Brockley: Fred's and Arlo and Moe are both near Crofton Park station, but which one does 'Sexy Toast'? You'll have to click through to find out...

We have an update to the West Norwood Library & Picturehouse following a visit, which revealed some decent vegan options on the menu. We've also paid the Phoenix at Rainham pub a visit following its recent change of management. They also have a dartboard, hopefully one with a bit more space for their patrons to fling their 'arrers around.

Finally, the Parma Cafe greasy spoon in Kennington has closed, and is now a sushi bar. I wonder if there any establishments that have gone in the other direction, from sushi to spoon?
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Owl & The Pussycat, West Ealing, London W13

RGL Massive - HELLO!

This week's featured article is the charmingly named The Owl and the Pussycat, a micropub housed in a former children's bookshop. It's kept some of the original occupants' vibe with owl and pussycat tat, and lots of bookshelves, one containing a Ladybird book entitled "Peter and Jane Get Cihhorisis". Okay not really. It does offer real ale and a friendly atmosphere with informative and helpful staff.

A new page has been added for the recently opened Vue Bromley, although we haven't visited yet.

Battersea Park drinkers take note: The Duchess is dead, long live the Duchess Belle. There has been a change of management since we've last visited, so maybe drop by and let us know how it measures up against 2009's experience.

Finally, there are five reported closures, all pubs:
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[personal profile] ewan
Hello and welcome back again, once again belatedly (on my part)!

Arroz caldo (Filipino congee) at Sunrise, Romford, London RM1

This week's featured article is Sunrise Jacket Potato and Oriental Food, RM1 3AB, a Filipino cafe in a Romford shopping mall. It's casual and utilitarian but clean, and the food is good, though Kake advises to avoid the chicken dishes.


After the Good Beer Guide pub blowout of the last few weeks, there are only two new articles: Jishal Goan in Wembley (again pretty basic, but with more underwhelming food), and Everyman Crystal Palace, a new outpost of the upmarket cinema chain.

There are significant updates to The Case Is Altered pub in Harrow Weald which has a large beer garden, and The Crown and Sceptre in West Kensington, a small many-pillared space.

One reported permanent closure is Cafe Adagio in Addiscombe, and a possible closure is The Station House in Chingford, but no one is sure if it's temporary or permanent.
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[personal profile] mrs_leroy_brown
Handpumps at the Red Lion, Bromley, London BR1

Beer fans celebrate! All the new Good Beer Guide 2019 entries have been uploaded. There are 306 in total, so why not visit a local watering hole, or wander to a new 'hood to quench your thirst?

New articles include Lounge 101, an Indian restaurant and bar in Ruislip with some interesting ideas about service. If you're round Ruislip way and fancy a beer, there's Hop and Vine, a micropub which as expected is small, but happy to make room for canine friends. Finally, the West Norwood Library and Picturehouse in, you guessed it, West Norwood, opened its doors, though we've not visited yet.

Updates have been made to Somali Town Restaurant in Streatham. It serves up hefty portions of food, though with slightly carbonized anjero on this visit.

In closure news, Halcyon Books in Greenwich has permanently shut. Masaledar, an Indian restaurant twixt the Tootings Bec and Broadway is also shut, although we're uncertain if this is temporary or permanent.
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[personal profile] katstevens
Roti Joupa, Clapham, London SW4

Evening readers!

This week's featured article is for Roti Joupa, a Trinidadian takeaway near Clapham North tube. I don't tend to venture to Clapham much (unless I've got on the wrong Overground train at Canada Water without realising), but I might make an exception for somewhere that sells macaroni pie. I enjoy macaroni, I enjoy pie, I also enjoy tamarind sauce - perhaps one day I will even enjoy Clapham?

Regular readers will recall last week's spoiler alert concerning a jaunt to Bromley ('the place where broom grows'), resulting in new pages for Sanxia, a Sichuan/Hubei Chinese restaurant, and the Star and Garter pub. There's also updates for the Red Lion, the Barrel & Horn, and Indian restaurant/hotel Tamasha, which has mucky pictures in the loos "ancient Indian artwork of an adult nature". One can only hope it's up to the standard of the infamous decor of Cafe Bangla (aka the Princess Di place) on Brick Lane.

How might one get to Bromley, I hear you ask? The direct path is unlikely to involve Cannon Street, but if you find yourself in said station you could visit the Sir John Hawkshaw Wetherspoons or nearby Japanese restaurant Koya. But where *can* you get to from Cannon Street? Douze points to whoever said Sidcup ('a flat topped hill'), where there are three pub updates, for the Hackney Carriage microbrewery, the Alma and the Hill Top Tap.

Right at the top of Green Lanes in Winchmore Hill, there's a new page for the Little Green Dragon pub, and an update for Turkish restaurant Big Seff. There's also a new page for the Temple Brew House bar and microbrewery, just off the Strand.

Finally we come back to Trigger's Bromley, where the Cineworld is temporarily closed, while it transforms chrysalis-style into a Picturehouse.
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[personal profile] ewan
Hello and welcome back to another week of randomness!

Kalpa, Croydon, London CR0

We understand that the content has been a little Croydon-centric recently, but expect the range to expand soon! In the meantime, your featured article is Kalpa, CR0 2SB, a Sri Lankan and Keralan restaurant in... Croydon! Our write-up suggests the food is a bit hit and miss, but since all the recent recommendations mean you're surely likely to passing through Croydon, why not stop off?

New articles move a bit further north, to Viet Hoa in Shoreditch: modern decor, and well spiced; and the Everyman King's Cross cinema. It's very posh and therefore both very comfortable and very expensive (like the rest of the chain).

Updates have been made to The Duke's Head Hotel in Wallington, and The Royal Oak in Borough. Thankfully the pub remains excellent, the beer good and keenly-priced too.

Finally, we must report the (thankfully temporary) closure of Mamuska! at Elephant & Castle, which is moving to another location nearby later this year. Polish dumpling fans can breathe easier.
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[personal profile] katstevens
Swan Books, Upminster, London RM14

Morning RGL readers! Apologies if you've been having trouble accessing the site, hopefully it should be working again now. We're rounding off the year with Swan Books in Upminster as our featured article. They've got a large children's section, plenty of local history books to peruse, and as you can see from the photo above, a cavalcade of different fonts on their shop frontage.

There are new pages for two small cafes: Roome, a smart establishment in Herne Hill with large teapots but small cup handles, and the New York Deli, situated not in New York but a mere 3,747 miles away in sunny Dartford.

The Black Horse in Bexley has had an update following a visit to make sure the carpet is still there, while after multiple name and location changes, vegan cafe Vitao on Oxford Street has now closed.

Finally, the Panton Street Odeon has reopened as the Odeon Luxe Haymarket. Apparently it will stick to showing the more unusual cinematic releases, as it did before, but you can now enjoy them while sat in an expensive-looking reclining chair.

That's it from us until 2018 - see you then!
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[personal profile] katstevens
Hasi, Barking, London IG11

Evening all! We're back after a week off, with another featured article: Hasi is an Albanian restaurant and bar in Barking, with no discernible menu. Sounds like the food was tasty though, so certainly worth checking out if you're in Barking and/or want to brush up on your Albanian current affairs.

Two new pages this week! The Pan Tao Garden stall in Tooting Broadway Market serves boxes of extremely good value (if not particularly adventurous) Chinese food, while the Oasis Cafe in Thornton Heath has both British and West Indian menus (including a West Indian breakfast) - no Gallagher brothers sighted on our visit however.

Sydenham's best vegan cafe, the Honey Hive, has had an update following a visit (alas featuring the most terrible vegetable of them all, in 'rice' form), as have the Fox On The Hill Wetherspoons in Denmark Hill and Brasserie Vacherin in Croydon.

The Japan Centre has moved (yet again) just round the corner to Panton Street - its previous home in Shaftesbury Avenue now specialises in ceramics and books. Meanwhile further down Panton Street, the Odeon has closed, and is due to reopen at some point as a rather more 'luxurious' cinema. London Bridge's cinema/bar combo Roxy Bar and Screen has a less glamorous future: it is turning into a KFC. Finally, Croydon's fine dining scene is mourning the closure of Albert's Table (it's currently unknown whether or not it will become a fried chicken emporium, but if so they are welcome to take "Albumen EinstHEN's" as the best name I could come up with in 5 minutes).
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[personal profile] ewan
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] katstevens
Curzon Aldgate, Aldgate, E1

Morning RGL crew!

This week's (slightly belated) update sees the Curzon Aldgate cinema, opened this year, as our featured article. Currently at the Curzon Aldgate, humans are at war with the Transformers, and Optimus Prime has vanished. It's up to the unlikely alliance of Mark Wahlberg, Anthony Hopkins and Laura Haddock to save the day via a series of expensive-looking explosions.

There's a new article for Long Shot Coffee in Whitechapel, serving coffee, tea, soup and sandwiches. Tito's Peruvian restaurant in London Bridge has had an update after a visit (featuring an insufficient quantity of prawns), as has Le Raj in Epsom (which does a decent veg biryani). The latter also has air-conditioning, so I'm sorely tempted to go there this very instant.
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[personal profile] ewan
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] 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
IMG_20160115_134859143_HDR
Evening all, hope your Bank Holiday was pleasant! I spent mine looking at my local supply of anatomically incorrect dinosaurs in Crystal Palace Park.

This week's featured article is for Dexter Burger in Purley, home to interesting veggie burgers with a high rating on the all-important Bun Structural Integrity scale.

We've got new pages for Lamberts in Balham, a restaurant specialising in seasonal British produce, and Tandoori Naan And Chapati, a bakery in Walworth with a seemingly slapdash attitude to food hygiene. I think I'd rather go to Lamberts, myself.

There are Vietnamese food updates in the form of Dat Cang Supermarket and Mama Pho, both in Deptford. Also updated following a visit is vegan-friendly creperie Senzala, over in sunny Brixton.

Closures to report: the Breadroom bakery in Brixton has literally ended up in Valhalla, while the Cineworld Hammersmith is to be demolished. I cannot confirm or deny that the last film to be shown in this (admittedly rather run-down) Art Deco building was Kung Fu Panda 3.
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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.
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[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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Olympic Studios, Barnes, SW13

Welcome back! This week's featured article is boutique cinema Olympic Studios in leafy Barnes. It's quite pricy, and the snacks are all artisanal, but it's very comfortable in the Everyman Cinemas sort of way. There's also a cafe attached, but I didn't visit that.

We've got an update to Three Compasses pub in Hornsey, where Kake enjoyed a selection of brown bitters and the company of half a dozen people on a Friday afternoon.

Finally, the reported closure last month of Fino "tapas bar" in Fitzrovia. According to the news article announcing this, the owners believe London dining preferences have moved on to a more informal style of eating (i.e. like actual tapas bars).
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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] katstevens
Genesis cinema
(Image © diamond geezer, used under Creative Commons)

Morning all! A brief update this week to let you know about this week's featured article for the Genesis Cinema in Stepney, which was certainly one of the better things I recall about living in Mile End several years ago, and has been spruced up since then. You can find all RGL's cinema entries (for both independently-run and chain cinemas) on the Cinemas Category page.

There's also a new article for Finger Licking, a small Ghanaian restaurant by West Croydon station that also does takeaway. The honeycomb tripe comes recommended by our Tripe Correspondent, so perhaps I'll make the trip down there for the Ghanaian leg of the 2014 Dining World Cup? (If anyone has any restaurant suggestions for Bosnia-Herzegovina I'd be very grateful...)
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Cineworld Haymarket, St James's, SW1

Hello!

This week's featured article is Cineworld Haymarket, which is a cinema I find myself visiting quite often (for membership related reasons). It's an actual old cinema building, which feels rare enough in the centre of town, and screen 1 is excellent. I'd be wary of the smaller basement screens, though.

A new (stub) article is another new cinema, ArtHouse in leafy Crouch End. The other new entry is a write-up of vegan stalwart the Bonnington Cafe in Vauxhall. Depending on when you visit, there will be a different chef, but the food should all be fresh and tasty.

Finally, we've marked the Windmill in Sydenham as permanently closed.
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Ashburnham Arms, Greenwich, London SE10

The featured article this week is The Ashburnham Arms, SE10 8UH, a small Shepherd Neame pub in Greenwich with good fresh beer. However, it does seem as if the locals prefer wine. None of that craft beer guff here.

There are fully four new pages this week: Cote d'Azur, a French-Mauritian fusion restaurant in southern Croydon (try the crab soup); Squires, a Nigerian restaurant in Dagenham (look out for some pounded yam); Upney Cafe, a greasy spoon in Barking (you know what to expect); and The Royal Albert in Crystal Palace. This last one is another traditional locals' pub, though there are increasing numbers of locals who probably want something more gastro, so hopefully it will hold out for a bit yet.

Finally, the David Lean Cinema in Croydon has reopened in its original location of the Clocktower.

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