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london's best-kept secret cafe!

... is in our studio!! The day after we moved in, I meandered down to the communal kitchen only to find amazing food lying about on the counter top. 'Is there a party happening?' I asked the woman in the kitchen. 'No, these are the Metropolitan Tea Rooms," she replied. Gobsmacked, I ran upstairs and blurted out the news to my studio mates and we came downstairs and had the best lunch we've had in ages: four different kinds of fresh salad, pate or quiche, homemade bread, apple chutney, all of it made from scratch by the woman I spoke to.

Some animators - Martin, Nils and Ian - who work in the studios above and below us, and Jaine

The woman turned out to be Jaine Laine, who also caters for the Depford Rail Carriage Cafe (which, incidentally, we tried to have lunch at a few days before and it was too crowded, so we ended up at the greasy caff where Viv had that chip buttie). Not only was the food amazing, but totally affordable (£3.50 for the main, £1 for the cake) and Jaine said she'd take requests. It's open to the public (The Old Police Station, Monday-Friday, 11am-5pm, and possibly longer hours later), but I can't see how anyone but the people in the studio would know about it, since it's not on the main street and there are no signs anywhere. We lucked out, the cafe only just opened this week, so for the last three days, we have been very well fed. I'm sure we'll be meeting with our clients here! The police holding cells are off the corridor just next to the cafe, so we can take them there if they've been delinquent with our payments.

Jaine sounds like a fascinating person, she's also setting up the Deptford Museum nearby, opening at the end of September, which is going to record the social history of the people who live around here. So there will be lots of community involvement, with people bringing in their old photos and talking about them. ... Lots of good things happening!


( 9 comments — Leave a comment )
(Deleted comment)
Aug. 5th, 2009 07:22 pm (UTC)
Yay! We want to help Jaine and promote the heck out of this cafe so it will be here for a long time! :-D
Aug. 5th, 2009 09:34 pm (UTC)
i'm coming there. you try stop me. Looks super
Aug. 5th, 2009 09:47 pm (UTC)
I still can't believe it's real, even after all the food I ate.
Aug. 5th, 2009 09:52 pm (UTC)
Wow, Sarah, did you ever luck out -- a studio with lunch! And what a lunch. xxx
Aug. 6th, 2009 10:16 am (UTC)
OMG it just gets better!!
Aug. 7th, 2009 03:31 pm (UTC)
I did know about it! It was mentioned as a point of interest in a recent Time Out walking guide

Although according to my blog, I posted a link to the walks in June which means I read about the cafe two months ago and it wasn't even open yet!
Aug. 7th, 2009 03:44 pm (UTC)
Hey, well spotted, you! I'm going to print that off and show Jaine. 'Dilapidated' isn't the best description I would've chosen, but they probably wrote it awhile ago, and at least it gets a mention.
Aug. 7th, 2009 03:56 pm (UTC)
I knew you were moving in there when I read it which is why it stuck in my head. Meant to tell you about it before but forgot. The rest of the guides are quite interesting, too -- I learned from the one about Hampstead that Marx and Engels used to live 'round the corner from me!
Aug. 7th, 2009 04:21 pm (UTC)
Fabulous! :-D
( 9 comments — Leave a comment )


Sarah McIntyre

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