When I first moved to London someone told me that this is where you can get ‘the best bagels in the world’. I have since been informed by a born-and-bred New Yorker (in extremely weary tones) that this is in an exaggeration, unfortunate and misguided, and one that she has the unenviable task of correcting on a regular basis.
They are still pretty good bagels though. If the mark of good street food can be measured by long queues, even at 3am, and reliably unsmiling service then we’re onto a winner. I usually go for the smoked salmon and cream cheese one with a cup of tea on the side, but the salted beef with mustard and pickle is also pretty good, as are the cheesecake slices.
Prepare yourself well in advance, don’t dither, speak clearly and have your money ready promptly. These people have bagels to serve.
159 Brick Lane, Brick Lane, E1 6SB
PS Not only does he take away the 38, he’s now ramping up bus fares, and in a borough without a tube this is unfair. Send our golden-haired Tory toff of a mayor a postcard with some advice:
A new show at the East End Arts Club offers 26 interpretations of the alphabet, including this Most to Least alphabet by Amy Wicks.
The flyer says: Much of our time living in this world is spent devouring text and words, intentionally or not, whether it’s passively gazing at billboards from the window of a bus, being confronted by aggressive advertising campaigns, scanning headlines from discarded newspapers on an empty tube train or blearily reading about the nutritional value of our breakfast cereal. But do we ever stop to really appreciate those funny little forms scrawled across a page – their origin or even their beauty? And are there ‘enough’ letters to accurately describe everything we feel and need to say or do?
Artists include: Catherine Aguilar/Helen Lang/Mark Perronet/Tate Sisters/Phil Sheffield/Jess & George/Stinky Lincoln/Anthony Peters/Chu/Ben Allen/Angie Crowe/Lucie Sheridan/Art House/James Brown/Bangkokney Belle/Michael Vanderson/Hennie Haworth/Jennifer Camilleri/Owen Tozer/Alan Dempsey/Amy Wicks/Elliott Wilson/Ben Eine/DrD/People Will Always Need Plates/Richard Peacock. Artwork is on sale from £30.
Or for anyone bored to tears of economic cliches like ‘credit crunch’, you might like Swifty’s ‘Spend Now Worry Later’ cotton bag, yours for just a tenner.
If you’re coming from Brick Lane, the gallery is just over Bethnal Green Road (at the bagel-shop end of Brick Lane) at Swanfield Yard, 2b Swanfield Street E2 3DS (just off Redchurch Street). It’s open from 12-4pm on Saturdays & 12-6pm on Sundays until May 31.
I remember once a vegetarian saying that nothing made his heart sink more than going to a meat-eating friend’s house for dinner and being served vegetable lasagne… every time. I’d imagine that being limited to the veggie option on a restaurant menu must produce an equivalent heart-sink at times… so what’s it like to go to a vegan restaurant, where you can order everything on the menu? Slightly overwhelming, apparently.
But any vegans who are up to the challenge – as well as curious non-vegans – should definitely check out the Rootmaster Bustaurant, which is parked in the carpark behind the Truman Brewery, just off Brick Lane. Not only can you choose from the entire, enticing menu, but you eat it on the top floor of an Routemaster bus – perfect for anyone who misses those old bangers (my sister says she could always hear the rattling old Number 8 long before she could see it). Continue reading