Posts Tagged ‘Greenwich’

All aboard the Big Red Bus

In Day to Day on October 28, 2012 at 5:23 pm


And I’m not talking about one of those sightseeing tour buses. The Big Red pizza bus is the antithesis of a London bus: it’s fun, it’s relaxed, you have s-p-a-c-e and you don’t have to pay to get on it. Oh, and it doesn’t go anywhere.

Selling pizzas, beer and delicious mojitos this place is definitely one you should add to your list should you find yourself in the area. Too often, I get so bored with the chain restaurants in Blackheath and Greenwich and this is a good alternative, tucked away at the end of Creek Road next to The Bird’s Nest.

I’ve already written a post about the best pizzas in London, and I’m annoyed I hadn’t discovered these ones when I wrote it. They are delicious. Not too thick and they don’t skimp on toppings (although I’ve read reviews that say each time you go the toppings on the pizzas change – I think this is a good thing but I suppose if you order something once, you’d expect it to be the same the next time you order it).

It’s cheap, too – an average meal with a drink and side/starter comes in just over a tenner. Try the Flamenco, which has Italian chorizo and lumps of morcilla, which is like black pudding – they’ve also got Meantime beer, side salads and a selection of desserts. The one thing on the menu I wouldn’t recommend is the bread and dipping oil, simply because you don’t get enough.

I was pleased to see that there’s room for loads of people in the number 30, which is good now the weather’s turned colder, but their outdoor area is covered in awning with lots of comfy sofas and blankets for the braver among us.

The location is what does it for me. Although Deptford is enjoying a bit of a regeneration at the moment, there are still parts of it that belong on Derelict London and by being situated underneath the DLR, on a main road, the area occupied by Big Red feels random and totally out-of-the-way. Actually I tell a lie, the mojitos are what do it for me…

I’m even more likely to go back now I know there are plans to park a truck next to it and to create a cinema.


London Riots

In Day to Day on August 9, 2011 at 7:06 pm


In the capital, the last few days have been ones of shock, devastation and sadness. A persistent and unwavering destruction of such a striking and inspiring city is something I never thought I would witness – even harder for me to comprehend is that this is being done by people who have grown up and lived in London communities their whole lives.

I spent much of last night keeping track of the constant updates on the news, Twitter and Facebook of the continuing violence, looting and vandalism – today was no different as my news feed gradually filled with new targets and planned attacks.  Leaving work early today, there was a general feeling of unease and upon reaching Greenwich, the boarded up shops and already smashed windows of the shops along Trafalgar road added to this.

Thankfully, messages have now turned from being helpless to fighting back – particular highlights are this woman in Hackney, who’s speech has now been viewed over a million times on Twitter, and the group of Turkish shop owners who stood guard in Stoke Newington last night. To help with the clean up now being organised by thousands of locals, follow @RiotCleanup on Twitter and find out how you can help turn the last few days around.

Some pieces that have been written over the course of the day have really struck me. The first is by Camila Batmanghelidjh , who is the founder of The Place to Be and Kids Company – a well written piece that everyone should read where she expresses her thoughts on the rioting: ‘Society relies on collaborative behaviour; individuals are held accountable because belonging brings personal benefit. Fear or shame of being alienated keeps most of us pro-social’.

Another article worth taking the time to look at is this one, where home secretary Theresa May ‘dismissed fears that deep spending cuts could undermine the ability of the police to tackle possible civil unrest, and insisted the British did not respond to austerity by rioting on the streets‘ in September 2010. A similar article was posted by the Guardian at the end of July 2011, questioning the consequences of slashing the youth services budget by 75% in the Haringey area.

One person who wasn’t too worried last night was Liz Hurley, who amidst a city in turmoil, decided to tell us what Shane Warne had for tea.

Judah and Zula’s

In Day to Day on June 20, 2011 at 9:05 pm


I think I’ll be facing a lynching when I say this but…I have never understood the appeal of Nando’s. After trying numerous times to embrace the chicken revolution and get on board with collecting chicken points following comments like this – ‘I’ve managed to save up half a chicken’ (my sister), I just don’t really rate the food that much. I finally became a fully fledged chicken aficionado on Saturday…

Perfect jerk seasoning, huge steaks, whole fish and enough chickens to last a lifetime were on offer at the Carrib-Inn on Saturday. Sandwiched between estate agents, hairdressers and kebab shops, the restaurant/bar is easy to miss – I’ve lived in Greenwich most of my life and it took a friends birthday party to get me to try it (it has been open for around two years).

The birthday party was downstairs, outside in the small area where we had a classic barrel barbeque stuffed full with meats and fish, enough to feed over 50 people for 8 hours. The jerk seasoning is perfect and the chicken is neither dry nor stringy – I am of the opinion that if you are vegetarian you should not attend a barbeque but for my plus one, Miss Emily, there were yummy veggi patties and potato salad. However, as the world’s worst vegetarian she polished off 2 steaks and a plate of chicken.

The basement bar doubles as a small dance floor, and as with all family parties, the only people running across it chasing each other were the children but I imagine it does get busy on non-private event nights. The restaurant upstairs serves a range of authentic dishes including braised oxtail, stews and house fish specialities and everyone who works there is so friendly that you are halfway through your order before even looking at the menu.

I cannot recommend the food here enough, although it is slightly out of the way of Greenwich town centre, it is worth the journey.

Visit their website here.

I’ll see you by the pool

In Day to Day on May 12, 2011 at 10:05 pm


So a few weeks ago it started getting sunny, I started seeing lots of people pouring into Greenwich and I subsequently posted an article on alternative places to seek out a decent drink, seat and meal in the area.

Today, I went to Shoreditch House, which if you are privileged enough to be a member is an amazing summertime hangout for those in search of something ‘exclusive’; it fits nicely into the category of alternative places to escape crowds and enjoy your drink. A converted biscuit factory, you enter through an unremarkable, and indeed unmarked door and after making it through security checks and passport control, a lift takes you up to the fifth floor.

Here, there is an airy restaurant and bar, and I have subsequently found out that on the fourth floor there’s a bowling alley (if I had known this, the rest of the post may well have been a tally of scores).

Up another flight of stairs and we reach the gem of SH’s crown, the rooftop pool. Surrounded by white sun loungers and panoramic views of London, it really is breathtaking. We had dinner in the adjoining restaurant, again with floor to ceiling windows that provided beautiful views of the sunset across London.

The menu is simple, uncomplicated and not too pricey considering the settings and atmosphere, which was relaxed and chilled. I had monkfish with tomatoes, capers and mash: faultless. My fellow diners had the salmon, the pan fried pollock, the steak, and the lamb cutlets with zucchini fritti to share. As much as I could talk about how tasty the food is, I also love the waiters and waitresses, who wear polo shirts, chinos and deck shoes in various muted colours – not a waistcoat in sight!

The reason I liked Shoreditch House so much was for everything it wasn’t. Private members clubs are notoriously stuffy and to be honest, that is what I was expecting. I am however, prepared to admit that this might have something to do with it being in the same group that owns Soho House (below) in New York, and the episode of Sex and The City that charters Samantha’s frustration over non-membership.

The sun’s out…let’s all go to Greenwich!

In Day to Day on April 10, 2011 at 6:28 pm


Every year it is the same. The sun comes out and thousands of people descend on Greenwich to enjoy the weather. As nice as this is, it’s too crowded for me (and others I have spoken to),  so I’ve put together an alternative guide to seek out the places off the beaten track and enjoy your beer without having to protect it viciously from spillage.

For drinking…pubs towards the Deptford side of Greenwich are your best bet for getting a seat. Try the Morden. Very local and the wine list is ‘red or white’ but for a relaxed, friendly atmosphere it can’t be beat! Just around the corner you’ll find The Greenwich Union, which is always quite busy but for good reason. Their selection of beers is vast and the food is restaurant quality (try the Cherry Beer and the paella). Also, they acquired a new site, The Old Brewery on the University of Greenwich campus last year, which is brilliant.

For eating…if you don’t fancy The Greenwich Union, The Saigon restaurant does delicious Vietnamese food at the same prices as the far more substandard Tai Won Mein, and Noodle House (all three are in central Greenwich but most tend to head for the two latter choices). The food court in the indoor market is brilliant – I recommend the Churros, the Chicken Karage  stall (get there early, they always run out) and the two blokes cooking up huge pans of Nigerian food. However, unless you arrive very early I would avoid the whole indoor market as there is barely room to breath once it hits midday.