cafe miscellania

  • from Kieran

    i used to work as a dispatch rider in london and went to hundreds of cafes and i've seen some of my old faves on your website. i wonder if you can help me find a real gem.... it was a small cafe run by an ex-boxer in his late 50's and had old b&w photos of boxers/fights/promo posters all over the place and i mean from skirting boards to ceilings. the food was good but the character of the place and the people there was awesome. all i can remember is that it was in it's own small building in the greenwich area on a desolate industrial estate. it'd be great to re-visit or see a review cheers and thanks for all that dedicated eating

  • from Clare

    It may be too far out of the west end for you, but I have a haven of greasy spooned-ness at the end of my road. YORK CAFE on Woolwich Road is clean, friendly and with proper chips. It is even licensed I think. Give it a go!

  • from Lambros

    TJ's Cafe in mortlake sw14 open seven days a weeks, big portions!! cheap. you should definatley visit this place won the "best greasy spoon" in london award 2003

  • from The Shropshire Cafe

    Russell how come we have not seen you at our cafe you are missing a treat. We serve the best all day breakfast in the North West We cater for everyone also we are in the process of taking on the title of the Ace Cafe of the Midlands Regards Lynn & Pete.

  • from Dave

    May I heartily recommend Sues Cafe in Gillingham Road, Gillingham, Kent (almost opposite the Arriva Bus Depot). Great food, great tea............very good prices for such good quality breakfasts and dinners.

  • from Abby

    The mess in Hackney is much nicer (and admittedly middle classer) than it's local counterparts (nice sausage rather than pig's bum). Some say it's better than Mario's... Alt for a good proper greasy spoon Dilari's on the corner of Mare Street is pretty good. Packed out every lunchtime and they have a non-smoking side of the room. Finally, if you live near Ealing and you've never been to Starvin' Marvins you're missing out. I was cautiously eating my breakfast with the pancake and maple syrup on one side and the bacon and eggs and hash brown on the other. Then absentmindedly I stabbed a bit of bacon onto the end of my syrupy pancaked-up fork… It's manna from lardarse heaven.

  • from Emma

    I love yr book and website. I have never commented on one or a blog before as I dont know how to. My son got this space for me. I am trying to get info on my favourite old cafe, The Blue Sky, by corner of Westbourne Grove and Chepstow Rd,London W2, between PAddington and Portobello Rd, which was my home from home from 1974-80.I lived in various squats and flats nearby and hung out with various groovy people in those days.... It closed down a few years ago. I wld love to get photos and the name/address of the lovely Irish waitress and Italian boss.... I have tried the Archives at Westminster City Library but no luck. I am doing a Ceramics degree as a v mature student and want to do an installation recreating a table at it, the light coming thru steamy bright plateglass windows, the smells, food, china,plastic menus, etc etc. I have assembled a load of stuff (tables, chairs etc),but they are not perfect. I wonder if you have any ideas on where I cld borrow/hire perfect stuff in one fell swoop, for a few days in early Jan 07? Most of all I want to get hold of a tape/CD of cafe background noises. Any ideas? Many thanks, Emma

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Thanks for the great photos of the "101" before it was refurbished earlier this year. All the counters and stools have gone, and it's lost virtually all its charm. You can still get great bread pudding, or at least you could on my last visit about 7 weeks ago.

The old place used to have a motley clientele. At night, there were times when it made Hogarths's "Gin Lane" look like tea and sandwiches at the vicarage!!!


Oh goodness me, you should see the state of this place now. Utter vandalism. They have left the yellow formica on the wall there but it has now been almost completely covered by tacky posters, as if they are ashamed of it. And it's not just subjectively wrong but objectively ugly: cluttered, messy and cheap like the sort of kebab shop where you daren't eat anything. And if the intention was to get more customers packed in, it doesn't seem to have worked. What a shame and what very silly owners.


I know, depressing isn't it. I walked past the other day. At least it's redeemable, they've not torn anything out yet.


If you want a fix of yellow Formica ( or Vitrolite),and you're in this part of south-west London, try Pete's Mini-Bar in Upper Richmond Road, Putney. Turn left out of East Putney tube, and cross over the road - it's about a minute's walk away.

It's a small, hole-in-the wall place, with a few booths, and a counter and stool area, like the 101. It's open 7am-3pm weekdays, till about 2pm on Saturdays. With Caffe Nero and Subway opening yards away, within the past few months, I can't see it being here this time next year.

You'll kick yourself for not checking out the "River Cafe" opposite Putney Bridge tube-station.It's one of Adrian Maddox's top 10 classic cafes, and deservedly so. It also got rave reviews in "London Caffs". The Italian family that run it are probably some of the most decent cafe owners you'll ever meet. The food's good, and pretty cheap. It's open 7-5pm weekdays, Saturday till about 3pm. Try to avoid 12.30-1.30pm weekdays, and the same time on Saturdays, especially when Chelsea and Fulham are playing at home - the place gets jam-packed.

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