Started by Carol Deeney and her boyfriend Paddy back in 2012, the duo brought the world – well, alright then, London – the Macbeth toastie, consisting of haggis, cheddar, caramelized onions and rocket, sandwiched between two crisp slices of granary. It has magical hangover-curing properties, but is just as good even if you haven’t spent the best part of the night before at one of east London’s finest drinking establishments.
Last October, having grown their business to regular weekly spots at London’s biggest markets, not to mention pub pop-ups and festival appearances, the couple opened a bricks and mortar café on Leyton High Road, which has fast become a popular local hangout that gets so busy on weekends it’s not unusual to see people queuing for tables.
The Macbeth toastie is on the menu, along with the Lady Macbeth, its veggie counterpart, and the Hamish, an equally yummy sandwich of ham, cheddar, spinach and spicy tomato chutney, plus a couple of other options, all costing £5. My ideal scenario is to go with someone who’s happy to go half and half on a Macbeth and a Hamish so I don’t have to choose between the two. (For smaller café-goers who are highly suspicious of anything green there are simple cheese and cheese and ham toasties too.)
The interior? Well, it’s light and welcoming, with white walls, painted floors, and a simple counter at the back. Seating is at three sharing tables on retro chairs in varying shades of blue, white and black, plus there’s a couple of high chairs if your group includes littles, and a cosy nook at the back if sharing’s not your thing.
Deeney’s may be all about Scottish flavours but there’s a strong east London thing going on too. Coffee is by Allpress, natural tea blends by Bow’s Zig Zag teas, you can pick up loaves of organic sourdough from Seven Seeded Bakery to take home, and the walls are decorated with pieces by local artist Tiff Howick (also available to buy).
Carol and Paddy aren’t stopping at food, so there are gifts, candles, greeting cards too. If you haven’t been yet (why not?), put a trip to Deeney’s on your must do list for March.