You might have known this spot previously as The Plough, but also maybe not, since it’s literally in the middle of nowhere East London. It’s a cool outdoor cafe and bar with a big terrace overlooking the River Lea, near Hackney Wick, and the obscure waterside location feels miles away from everything. Sure, you can see the Olympic Stadium behind the trees and sure, the river used to glow a weird radioactive green at night, but they’ve cleaned it up to the point that it’s actually a nice place to hang out with a few drinks with mates on a sunny afternoon. There are burgers and tacos if you get hungry, craft beers, and an air hockey table because you’re human and you like ripping into your mates. Be sure to check that there aren’t any football matches on the day if you don’t fancy being caught in a crowd of West Ham fans.
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The Chesham Arms
The Chesham Arms in Hackney has one of the best beer gardens in London, and they let you bring your Yard Sale pizzas in to eat.
Gotto Trattoria is a casual Italian restaurant in Hackney Wick, located on the river Lea. Grab a seat on their outdoor terrace when the sun is out.
Jolene is a bakery, café, and restaurant on Newington Green serving very nice, very grainy, very wholesome breakfast, lunch and (on some days) dinner.
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Electric Diner is an American-style diner in Notting Hill, serving all the classics. It can get pricey, but it’s reliably good.
Kerb Camden is a great street food market in Camden Lock, with a great lineup of street food dishes, but becomes a complete tourist trap at weekends.
Sea Containers is the very cool-looking restaurant inside the Mondrian Hotel. It’s great for breakfast and lunch meetings, and group dinners.
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