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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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Santok Maa's, Thornton Heath, London CR7

Good evening ya'll!

This week's featured article is Santok Maa's, a totally vegetarian and vegan-friendly Indian restaurant in Thornton Heath. It serves a good selection of savoury food as well as sweets, and has been visited frequently by Kake. I'd like to sample the house speciality of Nairobi bhajia (battered potato slices) which is allegedly too large a portion for one, which feels like a challenge!

We've got a heap of new pub pages:


But wait! There's more! Updates have been made to even more pub pages:


In non-pub news, updates have been made to Sunrise Jacket Potato and Oriental Food, a Filipino cafe in Romford, beating Fish in a Tie for this week's best business name, which truly is saying something. 

Reported closures this week are Bull and Last on the edge of Hampstead Heath, although it's only temporary. Permanent closures have been reported for central Croydon's Roti Masters as part of the redevelopment of St George's Walk, and Beer Rebellion in Crystal Palace.
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Blend, Norbury, London SW16

Hiya folks!

This week's featured article is Blend, a microcafe in Norbury. It's hard for me to think about hot drinks right now, but if I'm ever around that way, I'll be sure to check out their excellent selection of loose leaf teas. They also serve a curated selection of breakfast faves and sangers, and you'll likely be able to charge your phone or other electronic device if need be.

Two new articles have been added - Obia in Croydon's restaurant quarter serves an interesting falafel burger, though it appears the curse of the structurally unsound veg burger knows no bounds. If that seems a bit outré, you can always stick with their traditional Italian classics.

Still in Croydon, Kalpa serves Sri Lankan and Keralan food. Our reviewers were satisfied by the overall quality, though slightly underwhelmed by the mutonniness off the mutton rolls.

Updates have been made to Viet Grill in Shoreditch. Perhaps try the Saigon Feed set lunch, where you can choose from a limited selection of starters and mains, one of which is called "grilled piggy aubergine" and which our reviewer found quite nice.
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[personal profile] ewan
Hello all! It's Wednesday! You know, Kake sends me updates on Sunday or Monday, but I just like to keep you all waiting in excited suspense to find out what's been going on at the RGL website... (Well, that, or I'm just a bit disorganised.)

東京ダイナー (Tokyo Diner), Chinatown, London WC2

So this week, our featured player is Tokyo Diner, WC2H 7JP, a busy if sparsely-decorated Japanese veteran, which won't take your tips and does a fine agedashi tofu.

New to the team is Blend, another compact Norbury tea and coffee lover with a fine view of railway platforms, offering what we're calling sensibly-balanced food.

We have a breakfast-related update to Affogato, also found in Norbury.

Finally, looks like Hiep Phat in Walworth might be going, but we're not sure yet. Tins and boxes of Chinese and Vietnamese groceries may no longer be available at this location in SE17, but we're just waiting confirmation on its fate.
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[personal profile] ewan
I am keeping you waiting this week, apologies, but read on for some fine places!

Boca, Aldgate

First up, the featured article is Boca, E1 7DA. This is a cafe in Spitalfields themed around South America! An entire continent of food in such a small space. Anyway, expect empanadas aplenty, and vegan/veg options, hurrah!

Otherwise, we have three updated articles:

* Tokyo Diner, a Japanese restaurant in Chinatown. Try some tasty agedashi tofu, perhaps?

* Cafe Blue, a cafe in sun-struck Purley. It is blue. May not be worthy a visit to Purley if you're not local, unless you're a fan of curly fries perhaps?

* Cappuccino, a cafe in Norbury. It gets busy, and you might not get the breakfast you want, but try the smoothies, smoothie fans.
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[personal profile] ewan
Hello again!

Deli Felice, Rotherhithe, London SE16

This week's featured article is Deli Felice, SE16 7JQ in Rotherhithe, a small space showcasing a frequently changing roster of local artists. Sounds pretty good and you may even find yourself not objecting to dried oregano.

We have updates! Three updates! There's Pearl Liang, a dim sum place near Paddington (still good!). There's Bridge Hotel in Greenford (still there). And there's The Orange Tree in Richmond (still probably best to avoid when there's rugby on).

Four reported closures though: Good Taste, a very good deli in CryPal, sadly missed; Kensington Roof Gardens in, er, Kensington; Rio's Britannia Cafe in Norbury; and Bunga Raya in Thornton Heath.
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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
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] ewan
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] 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!

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] ewan
IMG_20170101_132239818

Bit of a light one this week! The featured article is Steakout, SW16 4AQ, which was added recently. It's a halal steak restaurant in Norbury. Expect neon, toy cows, sizzling steak.

Our one new article is Bela Vista in Plaistow, a Portuguese cafe/restaurant with draught lager (Sagres I'm guessing) and pretty good Portuguese food.
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[personal profile] ewan
Hello, and after a bit of seasonal break, welcome back to a new year, 2017!

Lulu's Caribbean Cuisine, Finsbury Park, London N4

This week's featured article is Lulu's Caribbean Cuisine, N4 3EN. It's pretty small and colourfully painted, and if you're there for a weekday lunchtime you may find yourself the only one. Generous portions and flavourful too, worth checking out we think.

There are three new pages: A&N Brothers Cafe in South Croydon (decent breakfast); Steakout in Norbury (neon pink, but decent steak); and The Fox pub between Coulsdon and Caterham (more a restaurant than a pub, but you can drink there, and the food is... decent).

Our two reported permanent closures are Bottledog on Grays Inn Road, and The William Jolle pub (a Wetherspoons) in Northwood Hills.
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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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Redemption, Old Street, London EC1

Evening everyone! I hope you all found time to do something interesting over the holiday weekend. We're taking a few weeks off for some beer-related investigations, but there's plenty this week to tide you over until then.

Our featured article is for Redemption in Shoreditch, a vegan restaurant with an interesting (and 100% non-alcoholic) drinks menu. I don't think I've ever heard of a cocktail with lettuce in it before, let alone drunk one.

We've been to Swanley! The station is now in TfL zone 8, giving Oystery access to the Greene King-owned Lullingstone Castle pub, the Blue Harbour fish'n'chip shop (big portions, give the peas a miss), The Chef Chinese Restaurant and Sharon's Card Crafts, which sounds like a must-visit for papercrafters.

If for some reason Swanley doesn't float your boat (perhaps you are allergic to swans?) there are new articles for Cafe Adagio in Addiscombe, the Tulse Hill Hotel pub (another Greene King establishment), Pepe Italian Street Food (a pizza/pasta takeaway in Soho), The Finsbury pub near Manor Park station and the Somali Town Restaurant in Streatham, where the menu options have a refreshing simplicity (no lettuce cocktails).

The Mimosa cafe in Herne Hill has had an update following a visit, as has the Old Ale Emporium in Harringay (not to be confused with Haringey) and our old Ewok-village friend in Finsbury Park, the Faltering Fullback.

Finally, one sad closure to report: the lovely old Tudor Rose in Marylebone is going to become a restaurant. When I worked nearby I was always happy to spend time in this pub, especially in winter with its open fire and seemingly semi-permanent Christmas decorations hung all around the walls.
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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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Ezo Bistro, Barking, London IG11

Hello! Our featured article this week is Ezo Bistro, IG11 8TU, a cafe in the concourse of Barking Station. Stations are never usually conducive to good cafes, but RGL feels this one might be an exception. They've made an effort with the decor, and there's a mix-and-match sandwich menu for which you might get bonus spinach side-salad.

Several new articles too! Gurkha's Diner in Balham is a Nepalese restaurant which doesn't go very heavy on the spices (if at all). The Roebuck is a pub in Borough, busy on a Friday as you'd expect. The Blue Eyed Maid is another pub not too far away from that one, on Borough High St, and do Indian food during the day. Finally, Cafe Nomad in Norbury is a halal Mediterranean pizzeria and restaurant.
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[personal profile] katstevens
Namak Mandi, Tooting, London SW17
Evening RGL readers!

This week's featured article is for Namak Mandi, a Pashtun/Peshwari restaurant in Tooting. I spent a good half hour down a Wikipedia rabbit hole after googling the difference between Pashtun and Peshwari, and ended up learning (a small amount) about the post-colonial implications of the Durand line! Incredibly complex history aside, there are some tasty-sounding menu options at Namak Mandi, including enormous Afghan naans.

Also based in Tooting is Khani Cuisine, an Indian/Chinese (i.e. Chinese food tailored for Indian tastes) cafe, for which we have a new page. Also new: Queens is a pleasant locals' pub in Upton Park (no real ale but there is a pool table). I imagine it will become much quieter on match days following West Ham's move to the Olympic stadium. Finally, there's a new page for Norbury's Cappadocia Ocakbasi, a Turkish restaurant who are very generous with their lahmacun.
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[personal profile] katstevens
Sugahill, Sydenham, London SE26

Evening RGLers!

This week's featured article is for the Sugahill cafe in sunny Sydenham. The gang have a record fair every Sunday, so you can enjoy your brunch while listening to (maybe) Orange Juice and (perhaps) The Lovely Eggs. A delight for rappers and non-rappers both!

Non-musical additions to RGL this week: Ezo Bistro is a small but comfy cafe that just happens to be in Barking station (though you'd never know it from the inside). Our ongoing mission to explore the entirety of Tooting continues with the Ramble Inn, a friendly locals' pub with plenty of (keg) beer, while we found the Furzedown in Streatham rather loud and football-focussed for our liking.
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[personal profile] ewan
Hi there welcome back to another week of interesting things to drink, eat and do south of the river (and maybe like one or two things to the north -- though that lack is entirely my fault by the way).

Senzala, Brixton, London SW9

So the featured article this week is Senzala, SW9 8PS, which is a creperie in Brixton Village Market, that burgeoning community of little foodie units. There are sweet and savourity galettes and crepes served up by Brazilian chefs, and if you're vegan you'd usually steer clear of this kind of thing, but fear not for they do some vegan options too that sound great.

The new articles are: We Brought Beer, a branch of a craft beer shop/stall in Tooting, where you can drink on the premises as well; Frydays, a fish and chip restaurant in Norbury (do you see what they did with the name eh?); and Som Saa, a well-reviewed Thai place in Whitechapel/Spitalfields, so do go read Kake's review, as it sounds great.

There's an update to The Old Dispensary pub in Camberwell.

The Shooting Star near Liverpool Street is now temporarily closed for refurbishment and will reopen under a new name.

Finally, one reported permanent closure is Maotai Kitchen in Chinatown.

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