The Knowhere Guide

Cheap Food in Spitalfields, Greater London*

Corner eateries, quick bites and the local chippy

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Cheap Food
  • Forget Brick Lane, go to Tayyab's (Fieldgate St) - book, and be prepared to queue. E Pellicci's on Bethnal Green Road for kidneys on toast, mmmm.
  • Scarlet Dot Indian restaurant and bar. Great food and cocktails! Great modern decor and service and a lovely place to go just for a coffee on a Sunday after looking around Spitalfields market. Happy Hour every day and big discounts on meals on Saturday nights.
  • I agree nazrul 2 is one of the better and more authentic "indians" along brick lane. Stay away from most of the ones on the main drag, check out the ones just off brick lane that are full of locals, this is where you will find the best food and the best prices. Some of the places around Hoxton e.g. Cantaloupe do do good food, but don't go for a Sunday morning hangover fry up or brunch if you are hungry, or you will get two poxy sausages on half a spoon of mash for 8. If you need a decent feed and can't hack a greasy spoon (and need a pint) you're better off braving a chain like the Puzzle Pub. (which I otherwise wouldn't be seen dead in)
  • St John Bread and wine in spitalfields opposite the market is brilliant. Booking essential except for breakfast. The food is really forthright, simple and full of fothright flavours. People who like Marks and spencers food should stay away. This stuff has taste. great wine list - though ~I cant really afford most of it The Rivington in Rivington streeet is my favouraite neighbourhood eatery. You can eat in the restaurant - entrance round the side - or eat their bar menu which is quicker and cheaper. Or get fab sandwiches and take away stuff from the little deli adjoining. Its sooooo good.
  • Great organic market at Spitalfields.
  • Tay Do Vietnamese cafe Kingsland Road, this is the only true Vietnamese food restaurant on Kingsland Road, the rest either serve oriental fusion food or Chinese, they have great portions, cheap prices, families are more than welcome and bring your own booze.
  • Rongwrong which used to be in Shoredtich Town Hall has closed.
  • The Sweet & Spicy in Brick Lane on the corner of Chicksand Street is a delight. A traditional Canteen with bright flourescent lights and formica tables. Prices are brilliant, staff friendly and food delicious. Many Banglaeshis eat here and its way ahead of the newer places nearby which charge two or three times as much, have cringing waiters in silly bow ties, and are trying to attract City suits to Brick Lane - Urghhh!! The Sweet & Spcy is the dogs bollocks. David Copeland - the fascist bomber who also did Brixton and the gay pub in Soho - tried unsuccessfully to blow up the Sweet and Spicy with his second bomb. Happily he failed.
  • nazrul 2 - the best "indian" in the brick lane area. great portions and cheap prices. best of all, it's bring your own booze with no corkage charge! it's on hanbury street, with a huge neon sign outside [can't miss it!].
  • The Real Greek in Hoxrton Market is fabulous. This is Greek food like you never tasted before. Its not cheap. And as everything is made fresh is can be slow - allow at least two hours for a meal. Hoxton Market is not where the market is - that is Hoxton Street. You can watch the people in the open kitchen doing their stuff and its nice to ask for a table near the kitchen so yuou can watch. Some of then are real cute and - boy can they cook.
  • The Great Eastern Dining Rooms is great for lunch providing you eat in the bar and not the poncey restaurant section which is much too expensive and a suit trap. Reasonable, imaginative lights meals from the all day menu.
  • Touzai, a pan pacific eatery serving junk loads of noodles is situated on 147-149 Curtain Road, Shoreditch. Service is great, atmosphere - spot on, foodwise - ma ma mia! Alot different to the "norm". Website's informative - Tel: 020 7739 4505 Adios Wagamama
  • New Tayyab - go, eat, and reach Nirvana. Fieldgate St E1
  • Viet-Ho on Kingsland Road is the dogs bollocks, fortunately they don't serve them.
  • Brick Lane: lots of Indian restaurants, some very cheap eg Muhib and Nazrul, some not so. The Clifton, near the north end (just before old Truman brewery), is open until 5am Wed - Sat. If you miss that, there's the 24 hour Bagel shop at near junction with Bethnal Green Road. Also at that end of Brick Lane, on the corner with Bethnal Green Raod is the East End Kebabish, which cooks the bread in a special over while you wait, rather than using off-the-shelf pitta.
  • The Seven Seas in Bethnal Green Road is a standard cafe which also happens to do killer (and cheap) Thai food. It's open in the evenings on Thursday and Friday. Spitalfields Market itself is full of places to eat.
  • The Sweet Chilli Thai Restaurant down on Mile End Road even does take-away orders via the Internet. Haven't checked it out yet, but will soon.
  • Canteloupe on Charlotte Road. Excellent (If pricey) Pacific Rim nosh. Good Bar Tapas. Best fries in London. Great Sunday Brunch Reliance, Old Street (Top end of Charlotte Road). Nay bad. Perennial, Columbia Road. Greats value, intimate, nice garden. Packed on Sundays. Good veggie Cafe in Hoxton Square Thai upstairs at the Bricklayers

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All the information in the Knowhere Guide has been contributed by users over the years. No one person is responsible for it all and not all contributors will agree with all the opinions included.

Parts of this information have been supplied by: Saint Acid, joel, Mo, Melanie, Will, Dave Ditch, Claire Hansford, Roland Jeffery, Ethelreda Gotobed, Perry, jo, ian e smith, plonker, Paul Sandwell, daniel, Stuart Scanlan, matt, Paul Sanders, Pierre at the Centre of Attention, adam modelski, the dogs bollocks, Clare Carabott, Rob Skedgell, mushie, generic, chrisbrock, vik, shireen, andy- northlondon, Julie Zielstra, Sam

Last updated: 2008-11-18

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