Newington Green

Sep 17

Newington Green

Situated in North East London, 30 minutes walk from the busy and traffic-bound Angel, Newington Green is a little pocket of calm and culture compared to what’s going on a mile down the road.

After spending many years as a glorified traffic island, Newington Green was given a new lease of life in 2005 with the regeneration of the central park. It’s inviting benches and grassy areas are pleasant to sit on when the sun’s shining, beside the children’s play-park and  new coffee shop. There’s also lots to offer on the road circling the green.

As well as the usual London mini-markets, repair shops and off licences, you can find some little gems. The speciality Italian delicatessen, a vintage children’s clothes & toy boutique and a quaint French patisserie & boulangerie.

If you’re looking for something a bit different, you can buy Turkish sweets and baklava at the bakery on the quadrant or pick up some unusual fruit and veg from the numerous stalls dotted around.

There’s some great old pubs in the area too. The Weavers Arms gives you that proper pub feel with a traditional tiled front and weekly live music from Irish folk bands. Opposite is The Alma, with comfortable old sofas, an open fire and monthly wine tasting club, every 1st Wednesday of the month.

The Acoustic Cafe is open from breakfast until early evening and serves up Mediterranean food along with plenty of interesting loose leaf tea infusions as well as wine and beer. There’s a wide selection of seafood on offer – mussels, a mixed seafood platter and grilled sardines, all at very reasonable prices. As with all great little places, word has got out, so if you’re going in for a bite on the weekend, it is advisable to book.

A few metres away is another great little place – Fifty Six. The European menu is fairly small but contains some exciting combinations. Lamb with puréed celeriac and duck with pears, ginger and Grand Marnier sauce. There are plenty of daily specials to choose from too, including the fish and chef’s pasta of the day, all reasonably priced between £8 – £15.

Far from being just a boundary marker between Islington and Hackney, Newington Green’s specialist shops, traditional pubs and trendy cafes are a great escape from hectic central London and give it a real buzz and community feel worth making the bus ride out of town for.

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