Here's Everything East Londoners Want You To Know

    East is east.

    Here's where to go for brunch:

    "Nothing cures a hangover quite like a Full English at Long White Cloud. Mr Buckley's also do an all day brunch menu, and their potato and courgette rosti is unbeatable.

    "But if the weather's nice and you want to sit outside, head to Curious Yellow Kafe, who do Swedish pastries better than anyone else." - Tabatha Leggett

    Here's where to go for dinner:

    "The best dinner you'll find in Hoxton is undoubtedly Vietnamese on Kingsland Road. My favorite is Mien Tay, where the lemongrass tofu is the best I've ever tasted. But they have a strictly no-booze policy, so if you want to BYOB you're best heading next-door to Anh Dao; their pho is incredible.

    "If you want something a little more simple, Pizza East do some of the best pizza around. And if you're in the market for a fancy evening meal, you can't beat The Clove Club." - Tabatha Leggett

    Here's where to go for drinks:

    "Beagle is right by Hoxton station – it's actually in the arches – and serve good wine by the carafe. But if you're feeling slightly more glam, the cocktails at Callooh Callay are worth a try.

    "Meanwhile, if you're after an evening in a friendly pub, The Marksman will do the trick. (Currently being refurbished, but opens again May 2015)." - Tabatha Leggett

    Here's what the locals want you to know:

    "Wander up to London Fields, and grab a bite to eat from Broadway Market. Alternatively, the roof terrace at Boundary is the perfect place to watch the world go by and enjoy an afternoon tea. Afterwards, make sure you head to Columbia Flower Market. And if you go at around 3pm when most traders are packing up, you'll get your flowers half price." - Tabatha Leggett

    Here's why you should live there:

    Here's where to go for brunch:

    "The Pavilion Café in Victoria Park does great coffee and brunch. You can't go wrong with their eggs florentine, but if you're feeling adventurous try the Sri Lankan which features stringhopper noodles, coconut curry with eggs, and dahl. The tables are mostly outdoors, and on the weekend you'll have to get there early (or do some tactical hovering) to get a decent seat. Or just get your food to take away and find yourself a more secluded spot in the park." - Kelly Oakes

    Here's where to go for drinks:

    "There's no shortage of good pubs in the East End. Both The Royal Inn on the Park and the People's Park Tavern back onto Victoria Park and are great for dog spotting, and the latter has a huge beer garden.

    "If beer is not your thing, the East London Liquor Company has a bar where they serve cocktails made from their own vodka and gin." -Kelly Oakes

    Here's what the locals want you to know:

    "Start at the Pavilion (obvs) or one of the many greasy spoons on Roman Road (the Unique Café is a good one). Walk it off with a stroll around Victoria Park, then wander further east down Regents Canal – stop off at Roman Road market (open Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays) if you fancy a bargain, or have a nosey around Growing Concerns, a cute little garden centre with an entrance right on the canal.

    "If you want to feel like you're not in London anymore head up through Hackney Marshes to the Middlesex Filter Beds nature reserve." - Kelly Oakes

    Here's why you should live there:

    "Bow's got a great community vibe with tons of families and kids playing out in the street, so it feels a lot more like the real world than some places in East London. Victoria Park is lovely, and there's plenty of other pockets of green space too. While there may not be a lot of nightlife right on your doorstep, there's plenty a short bus journey away – and it's nice to come back to some peace and quiet at the end of the night." - Kelly Oakes

    Here's where to go for brunch:

    "Based in the Stour Gallery space and overlooking the Olympic Stadium, the Counter Café is home to the mighty Counter Big Breakfast, as well as a veggie alternative that can easily leave meat eaters salivating with envy. It's also got an in-house coffee roastery, so you can rest assured their coffee beans are just as tasty as their homemade baked beans.

    "Back over Stratford way, the Sawmill on West Ham Lane is a cosy place to wile away an afternoon with a coffee and a generous slab of red velvet cake, while the Timber Lodge Café is a lovely little spot to fuel up with caffeine and food while exploring the Olympic Park." - Francis Whittaker

    Here's where to go for dinner:

    "Stratford and the Wick aren’t historically known for haute cuisine, but there are plenty of exciting eateries nestling in the converted industrial spaces along the area’s canals and waterways. Head to The Hackney Pearl in the Wick for an ever-changing menu of imaginative, fresh seasonal produce.

    "If you dare to navigate the hoards of slowly ambling shoppers in Westfield, there are a smattering of smaller independent places hiding among the chains to make the trip worthwhile. Sourdough-based pizza purveyors Franco Manca have a branch there and, if you head away from the station end towards Waitrose, the Great Eastern Market area has authentic sushi and gyoza from Japan Centre’s Umai, risotto balls and other tempting treats from Aracini Italian Deli and so much more." - Francis Whittaker

    Here's where to go for drinks:

    "Westfield's Great Eastern Market is the unlikely home of a microbrewery in the form of Tap East. Despite not having the historic charms of a traditional pub, the Tap has a bustling friendliness all of its own, an impressive range of beers, and the stuff they brew themselves is admirably generously priced. Also making a name by brewing its own is Crate in Hackney Wick. Nestled along the River Lea Navigation and exuding bucketloads of post-industrial cool, it also has one of the most imaginative pizza menus out there.

    "Life is slowly being breathed into the Olympic Park's old athlete's village, now rechristened East Village, as residents gradually trickle in to their shiny new E20 homes. The neighborhood is now home to its own local pub, aptly called The Neighbourhood. It's a bright, modern space where you can sample a decent range of locally-brewed beers accompanied by the ever-tempting aroma of freshly grilled meat. If it's a more traditional boozer you're looking for, the wood-panelled King Edward VII pub — better known as King Eddie's — on Broadway is something of a Stratford institution, and offers up a hearty Sunday roast." - Francis Whittaker

    Here's what the locals want you to know:

    "For all the many justified criticisms of the post-Olympic landscape of the area, the main benefit the Games has brought is undoubtedly the glorious, sprawling greenery of the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park. You can spend your weekends strolling or jogging along the newly landscaped riverbank, take the kids to one of the many adventure playgrounds, or feel like you're a world away from the hustle and bustle of the capital by exploring the flora and fauna of the Wetlands.

    "The area's also home to a living, breathing network of waterways. A little downstream from the reclaimed industrial art spaces of Hackney Wick towards Bromley-by-Bow lies the cobbled Three Mills conservation area, where you can have a nose around the lovingly-restored House Mill: one of the oldest tidal mills in the country." - Francis Whittaker

    "Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park - Beautiful lawns, nooks and crannies, loads of flowers, and benches so big you can lie down on them without getting in anyone else's way (and they're warm if it's sunny too). To find the best areas of the park, leave through the Hackney Wick side and follow the paths to the nature reserve.

    "Rooftop Cinema - You would never know that there was a rooftop cinema here unless someone actually told you (I lived nearby for more than a year before I found out), but the views over Stratford are swell and the film catalogue isn't that bad at all." - Scott Bryan

    Here's why you should live there:

    "The Olympics has meant Stratford has gone under a huge amount of change in recent years. Unlike other "gentrified" east London neighborhoods like Shoreditch, Dalston and Bethnal Green, the Games has meant it has — possibly thankfully — skipped the "hipster cool" phase of "regeneration". However, what this does mean is that it's jumped suddenly from from "gritty East End" to "shitloads of new luxury apartments" in one fell swoop, creating a uniquely uneasy juxtaposition between the old Stratford and the new.

    "However, there's a lot more to the area than post-Olympic glitz and the much-trumpeted transport links. The endearingly shabby Stratford Centre is still bustling, and the perfect antidote to the omnipresent glow of Westfield. It's home to a sprawling, traditional East End market, the endlessly interesting east Asian supermarket Loon Fung and, in the summer months, its own rooftop cinema. After closing time, it gets a new lease of life as a mecca for east London's skaters." - Francis Whittaker

    "Hackney Wick — while on the surface little more than a slightly edgy industrial estate — is the long-standing home to an even more vibrant arts community, with many of the old factories and warehouses transformed into studio, gallery, and clubnight spaces, as well as the forward-thinking Yard Theatre." - Francis Whittaker

    "Stratford is so underrated and it always feels like it is in constant change, with loads of new bars opening, restaurants and things being built and added. It feels completely different to when I first moved here, and it feels like it's going to completely change again in the next few years. The fact that the Olympics was here will never get old. And there are loads of parks and fields nearby to enjoy too. And the Orbit, which looks like an upside down saxaphone" - Scott Bryan

    Here's where to go for brunch:

    "Grade 2-listed, family-run art deco caff E Pellici is a Bethnal Green institution and a genuine jewel of the East End. The wood-panelled interior is glorious, the atmosphere is unrivalled, and the food is hearty.

    "Located in St. Margaret's House on Old Ford Road, The Gallery Café is beloved of Bethnal Green's vegetarians, vegans and pretty much any person who doesn't insist on eating meat for absolutely every meal. Cosy in winter and airy in summer, the café does a mean veggie Full English, has a gorgeous little garden and puts on talks, poetry readings, exhibitions and live music in the evenings." - Francis Whittaker

    Here's where to go for dinner:

    "Despite its unassuming Cambridge Heath Road frontage, Italina is one of East London's best kept dining secrets. Offering up fresh, decently priced Italian fare, the restaurant represents a real labour of love for friendly owner Eugene.

    "A little further up the road in self-consciously higgledy-piggledy surroundings under the railway arches is budget hairdresser-cum-Korean café Hurwundeki, where you can go for a snazzy new 'do, and stay for some delicious mandoo dumplings.

    "While it's not going to win any awards for its customer service or ambience, the modest-looking Gourmet San on Bethnal Green Road offers up big flavours for budget prices from its sprawling menu of admirably authentic, uncensored Szechuan cuisine: pig trotters, tripe 'n' all.

    "At the other end of the scale, the twin establishments in the old Town Hall on Cambridge Heath Road: The Typing Room and more affordable Corner Room, are the area's go-to high end eateries." - Francis Whittaker

    Where to drink:

    "The mainstay pub of Bethnal Green's party scene is the Star of Bethnal Green, which has a decent range of beers, solid food offering, and fine array of DJs.

    "There are also two brilliant backstreet boozers at the north end of Globe Road in the form of The Florist and The Camel, offering pizza and pie 'n' mash menus respectively, and both serving up a selection of hearty beers in rustic surroundings.

    "If you're more into cocktails, the eccentric Satan's Whiskers on Cambridge Heath Road is a new addition to the area, and boasts a madcap collection of taxidermy." - Francis Whittaker

    How to spend your weekend:

    "The V&A-run Museum of Childhood is a treasure trove of vintage toys ranging from ornate antiques to late 20th century kitsch, and is the perfect spot to rediscover your inner youngster.

    "For late night entertainment, Oval Space has a brilliant programme of electronic music and is up there with the best party spaces in the capital right now." - Francis Whittaker

    Why you should live there:

    "Despite all the changes it's undergone in recent years, Bethnal Green is home to a real mix of people from across the world, and, at least as things stand, strikes a great balance of traditional East End character and contemporary cool. Plus with Bethnal Green Gardens, Weavers Fields, Meath Gardens and of course Victoria Park right on your doorstep, the area's not just Green by name." - Francis Whittaker

    Here's where to go for dinner:

    "The Howl at the Moon pub is my favourite – it's got really good junk food like chicken strips and cheesy chips. If you'd like something fancier, then The Bargehouse is a fancy-ish bar/brunch place on the canal. And of course the Towpath Café is a really cute café, also on the canal." - Shyamantha Asokan

    Here's why you should live there:

    "Because, sandwiched between the silly trendiness of both Shoreditch and Dalston, it's somehow just a really normal place..." - Shyamantha Asokan

    Here's where you should have dinner:

    "The volunteer-supported Hornbeam Café serves locally-sourced vegetarian food, operates a "zero waste" policy" and provides a wonderful community space. Meanwhile, over in Walthamstow Village, the Village Kitchen offers quality food and a relaxed atmosphere for when you want to treat yourself.

    "Meanwhile, 'Stow foodies have been enjoying 56 St. James Street, a relatively new coffee shop with a hip atmosphere and a cracking line in sourdough." - Tom Phillips

    Here's where you should have drinks:

    "The Nag's Head is a much-loved community boozer with a big beer garden and a good line in jazz. Meanwhile, Ye Olde Rose & Crown is a Walthamstow institution: a great locals pub, an art gallery, a music venue and a theatre in one." - Tom Phillips

    Here's what the locals want you to know:

    "Start by getting some culture at the William Morris Gallery; then pop down the road for brunch at La Cafeteria, or head over to Walthamstow Village for some food at Eat 17 (with Bacon Jam, obviously) or the Queen's Arms. Stick on Orford Road by having drinks at The Village or the Nag's Head, and finish it off with dinner at the Village Kitchen or quality tapas at Orford Saloon." - Tom Phillips

    Here's why you should live there:

    "There's a reason the locals (well, some locals) call it Awesomestow – despite the property prices doing some scary things of late, Walthamstow still probably counts as a bit of a hidden gem, with a real sense of community you don't get in many other parts of London. Also, it's got a cinema and a Nando's now." - Tom Phillips

    Here's where you should go for dinner:

    "Che-man is a (broadly) Mediterranean restaurant that serves up excellent, brilliantly cheap, food in a very relaxed environment. Their garlic sausage menemem and devastatingly powerful Turkish coffee is easily the best hangover cure in East London, and in the summer you can even sit out on the street. That said, it's never been the same since they got rid of the enormous Che Guevara mural.

    "Rotorino is a pricy, but excellent, restaurant. It's busy, so you might need a reservation, though there's often space to eat at the bar. And the hanger steak is so, so worth it." - Luke Bailey

    Here's where to go for drinks:

    "The Fox Craft Beer House has a wide selection of frequently changed beers, knowledgable staff and decent sofas. It also has, without a doubt, the best pub dog in London. She literally looks like a fox and likes nothing better than curling up on people's laps. Oh, and there's a craft beer vending machine.

    "Down by the canal off Kingsland road is The Proud Archivist, which has a continually changing menu as they operate with different partners and pop-ups. They also have plenty of space to work, so it's a great place to come with a laptop. They put on a wide variety of exhibitions as well - last summer they had a gallery of hundreds of football stickers." - Luke Bailey

    Here's what the locals want you to know:

    "There are so many bars in Dalston that the best way to enjoy it is to wander up the street until you see one you like - whether it's the Ophelia with a theatre in the back, or Escudo De Cuba, whose owners insist on giving you a sambuca shot when you leave. Or, there's always the board game café – a ridiculous idea that is somehow works brilliantly, and is a great way to spend a few hours on the weekend." - Luke Bailey

    Here's why you should live there:

    "Dalston is just a really interesting place, and once you've lived there, there's very little that can happen that will surprise you." - Luke Bailey