Filly Brook’s garden! Six Things We Learnt This Week

From FillyBrook to the Francis Road Street Party – and a destination new Thai kitchen at the Heathcote

The Francis Road Street Party is happening ‘socially distanced’

We don’t know about you, but despite a post-July 4th hangover from hell, we crawled around the recent Francis Road Jumble Trail and encountered unexpected delights (especially bookmarked for next year are the mouthwatering stalls of Sri Lankan, Korean and Mauritian food, to name but three). So things are looking good for the forthcoming ‘Socially Distanced’ Street Party, which promises a tombola and raffle, live music and DJs, as well as market stalls, craft beer and generally top people-watching. Volunteers should email norlingtonrd@gmail.com. Between Claude & Albert Rd E10, Sunday 30th August, 12-4pm

In case you missed it popping through your letterbox.

Krapow is now permanent at the Heathcote & Star

Since lockdown eased we’ve enjoyed a pint or three on the shiny new Richmond Road-side pavement of the E11 destination boozer – which provides a fresh perspective to even the most jaded local. And the pub garden itself busier than ever: every table has been pre-booked on our impromptu visits. Streetfood-fanciers might be intrigued to see they’ve bagged Clapton’s acclaimed Thai afficionados Krapow off nearby rivals The Birds, which, finally is back open now, too. 344 Grove Green Road E11, follow @heathcotestar

Filly Brook has a big courtyard – with a Mexican kitchen coming soon

Much anticipated, we instantly took a liking to this quirky former Scouts Hut turned bar back in mid March, and felt sorry for them when they were forced to close about a week after opening. So we did our best to make amends at Filly Brook last Saturday knocking back a pint in their busy adjoining courtyard. Quite a clever ordering system, too. Oh, and if you need to soak up the craft beers and wines, food is soon to come courtesy of E11 ledge Taco Dave, the Mexican Fried Chicken bloke himself. 392 Grove Green Road E11, @fillybrook

It’s always bad weather in Wanstead

Just kidding, but seriously, whenever we amble across the Flats for a mooch down E11’s upmarket high street, the skies darken, the wind gets up and the heavens open – leaving us (during lockdown, anyway) shivering with a dripping takeaway coffee or pint on the green. And since July 4th the weather has been no kinder. But, despite the doom and gloom, we enjoyed lunch at The Provender, whose two-course £12.95 menu is on point, especially some expertly medium-rare flat iron steak (£3 supplement, a generous portion indeed). 17 High Street E11, @provenderwanstead

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Back open step by step next week… Photo: Phlox

Phlox is finally reopening

Our favourite opposite-facing double act are back on Francis: firstly, the lovely Venner has been open a while now; it was nice to see queues at the weekend with its one-in-one-out policy. And bookish types will be thrilled that the small-but-mighty Phlox is back on Monday, 20th July for click and collect, with takeaway coffees and scheduled visits to the bookshop to follow shortly after. Opening hours will be Mon-Fri 10am-4pm. We for one can’t wait to sit on those benches in the sun. Both Francis Road E10, @phloxbooks, @venner_leyton

And finally, The Northcote has a ‘secret’ barn

Those keenest to enjoy their own indoor space inside a boozer should book a spot at the rather lovely cosy outbuilding at the Northcote: blink and you could be in Tuscany (really). Seating up to 25 people, but only bookings of 6 under the current rules, the atmospheric Whisky Den is also right next to the wood-fired pizza kitchen. And, in fact, the outdoor area generally (see main pic, above) wins our spontaneous award for Most Impressive Covid Reinvention, with its sunny new decking and quirky, colourful distanced nooks and crannies. 110 Grove Green Road, @northcotee11

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