Peckham Food & Drink Guide

June 19, 2015


As I said, I’ve separated my Camberwell and Peckham food and drink guides and I’m updating both. The Peckham one has taken much longer because of all the new openings. I’ve really done my best to make sure this is up to date, and I’ve eaten at most of the places recently. As ever, if you’ve got suggestions, or you agree, disagree, whatever, then do let me know in the comments. I’ve left all the comments from the old post here, so there may be some about Camberwell too. Just in case you were feeling confused.

So here we go, in no particular order…

Restaurants, Cafes and Street Food

1. Asian Takeaway

This place does simple, cheap and ace food from a little hut with a tandoor in the back. On the counter rest vast silver trays containing richly coloured curries, a couple of kofta ready to be cooked (chicken, lamb), rice, dhal, a yoghurt and coriander sauce. A gent stands in front of the tandoor, calmly knocking out naan after naan. We ate a lamb kofta which came wrapped in that excellent fresh bread, with salad and sauce. The spicing is simple in the way that means every flavour is distinct. They also make a mean lamb samosa and serve egg and chilli parathas in the morning.

As I stood with my friend, shovelling down the kebab and mopping up the fall out, the owners kept ducking in and out with freshly cooked kebabs and bits to share with surrounding traders. We nicked a bit of the ‘special’ from the end of a long gleaming skewer; it’s that kind of place.


In charge of the tandoor


Indian takeaway, opposite Rye Lane station, just to the side of Ali Baba Fresh Vegetables (opposite Afro Foods). There’s a sign saying ‘Asian Takeaway’ on Rye Lane. It’s approx 133 Rye Lane, according to street view. 

2. Peckham Bazaar

This restaurant on the Peckham/Nunhead border serves food from across the Balkans, much of it grilled over charcoal. Fay Maschler gave it 4/5 stars, and so should you.

Peckham Bazaar, 119 Consort Road, SE15 3RU (see website for opening times and weekly changing menu)

3. The Begging Bowl

Begging Bowl

Good Thai restaurants in London are few and far between so what are the chances we’d get one in Peckham eh? Eh? EH? Okay so the heat levels at TBB might not be ‘authentic’ but hell, the food is tasty and the dishes are interesting. The betel leaves in particular are spesh and I have a special spot for those fish cakes. Read Lizzie Mabbott’s review for an idea of what to expect.

The Begging Bowl, 168 Bellenden Rd, London, Peckham, London SE15 4BW

4. Ganapati

Vegetarian street snacks – my favourite starter at Ganapati

Ganapati is a South Indian vegetarian restaurant; the smell of curry leaves and mustard seeds whacks you around the chops as soon as you walk in. They often have curd rice on the menu which I adore; yoghurt is stirred through cooked rice and finished with a sizzling hot oil, mustard seeds and glistening curry leaves.

Update: 7th Feb 2014 Ganapati now has a separate takeaway (delivery) place.

Ganapati, 38 Holly Grove, London SE15 5DF

5. Anderson’s

I’m a regular at Anderson’s, particularly for their award winning sandwiches (surprise). They nail them simply because of the quality of the ingredients; farmhouse style ham pulled off the bone in chunks, well dressed salad leaves, Dijon, Brickhouse bakery bread (some of the best loaves in London, which they also sell to take away). Can’t argue with that. They also open some evenings and occasionally host pop ups with local cooks like Sally Butcher from Persepolis (see ‘shops’).

Anderson’s, 139 Bellenden Rd, London SE15 4DH

6. Il Giardino

Okay so the Italian food at this family owned restaurant isn’t going to win any awards, and it really isn’t the sort of place one would travel across London to visit, but for local people, it has other charms. Eating there is like eating in someone’s living room. The walls are crammed with trinkets, the toilets are to be found up the tiniest windiest wooden staircase; the whole place seems stuffed to bursting with memories and history and warm fuzzy feelings. Young boys who look about 10 get trained on the job while a proud family member listens in; just everything about it is so incredibly old school and charming. The pizzas won’t be giving Pizza Pilgrims or Bravi Ragazzi a run for their money any time soon, but it’s more about the ‘experience’.

Il Giardino, 7 Blenheim Grove, London SE15 4QS

7. The Gowlett

This is a pub but I’ve put them in the restaurants section as they make an OKAY pizza. It’s not very nice as a pub. Sorry, die hard Gowlett fans.

The Gowlett, 62 Gowlett Rd, London, Greater London SE15 4HY

8. Peckham Refreshment Rooms

This place has been rammed since Rayner went but to be fair, was full from day one anyway. I tend to go for drinks rather than food but charcuterie and other simple dishes are available. The drinks selection is good: they’ve got Kernel beers, Foreign Extra Guinness and Breton cider. I haven’t had a chance to get down with the wine yet. I do have one major gripe with the place though and that is the seating; it’s unbelievably uncomfortable and needs to be changed asap.

Update: June 2015. PRR now has a full on restaurant since their expansion and they do regular tasting events in the evening. Check out their website for details.

Peckham Refreshment Rooms, Unit 4, 12-16 Blenheim Grove, London, Greater London SE15 4QL

9. Manze’s

One of the oldest pie and mash shops in London blah blah etc. etc. If pie, mash and liquor is your thing then you know where to go. You might not know WHEN to go however, as they have very odd opening times which clearly cater to a certain generation (hint: you’re not a member of it).

Manze’s, 105 Peckham High St, London, Greater London SE15 5RS

10. Artusi 

This slick Italian on Bellenden Road is owned by chef Jack Beer (ex Clove Club and Peckham Bazaar). Dishes like ox heart with salsa verde and artichokes with bagna cauda are expertly made and the pasta is as silky as it comes – I only wish it came in me-sized portions. Then again, I’m not sure the public should see how much pasta I can put away.

It tends to be booked up most evenings, but tables are reserved for walk-ins early doors, so rock up at 6ish and you’ll be dandy.


Photos: Chris Pople

Artusi, 161 Bellenden Road, London SE15 4DH

11. Lerryn’s

Lerryn’s is a little cafe with big personality. Go there for friendly faces, sandwiches, brunch, and general good vibes. They also open in the evenings Wed-Sat when they serve gin and Ting (who doesn’t want gin mixed with Ting? For the uninitiated – that’s a soft drink like Lilt but better) and Big Apple hot dogs. What, is not, to like?

Lerryn’s, 200 Rye Lane, SE15 4UR

12. Forza Win


Forza Win used to pop up all around London but now have a permanent space in Peckham. Aren’t we lucky, eh? They’ve got some massive wood fired grills in there, some giant long tables and a whole lot of really great food, generally including large chunks of excellent (Ginger Pig I think) meat for sharing. You buy tickets via their website for the set menu, and on Wednesdays they do something called ‘Awesome Sauce’ where you can walk in and get a bowl of seasonal pasta with a glass of wine for a tenner. Can’t argue with that.


See their website for opening times, location and tickets. Photos: Forza Win.

13. Pedler Peckham


The creamed corn toastie with scotch bonnet at Pedler (needs more scotch bonnet)

Pedler gets absolutely rammed for brunch at the weekends. I dunno how I feel about it really, because I’m the kind of person who wants to hide if I go out for brunch. I want to be able to slink out in my joggers and put away a sandwich without worrying about getting brown sauce on my face. Pedler is more the kind of place people go to be seen. It’s very styled. They have glasses that were made to look like jam jars, with handles on. That said, they do put very good bloody marys in them.

Pedler Peckham, 58 Peckham Rye, Peckham, London SE15 4JR

14. Miss Tapas


This little tapas place occupies the space where Southerden used to be (Mel moved her patisserie to Bermondsey Street). I’ve only been once, so I can’t really make a fair assessment. We had some ham croquettas that had a huge amount of nutmeg in them. Not enough to make us hallucinate, but I would say pushing that threshold. I digged them though. Their ‘Spanish fried chicken’ needs work however. Still, like I said, I can’t really make any judgements. What I can tell you, is that they serve plenty of lovely sherry. That alone is reason enough to pay a visit.

15. Obalende Suya Express

I’m recommending this place again, even though it is hit and miss. You have to try suya anyway, and when this place is on form, it’s fantastic. Read my original post here.

Obalende Suya Express, 43 Peckham High Street, SE15

15. Yada’s Kurdish Restaurant

This charming little Kurdish place is new and very welcome indeed. Check out my full post about it here.

To find it you need to walk past Ali Baba’s Fruit n Veg, up past Ali Baba Juices, and around the corner. It’s under a railway arch. 

16. Persepolis

Yes, you will also find Persepolis in the food shops section, but Sally now runs a lovely little cafe out the back which serves, amongst other things (such as mezze and toasted sandwiches), some spectacular ice cream sundaes with Iranian flavours.

Persepolis, 28-30 Peckham High Street, London SE15 5DT

17. Banh Banh *** Banh Banh is no longer at Rye Wax***

Banh Banh

Photo: Banh Banh

These guys are running a Vietnamese food joint in the basement of The Bussey with the Rye Wax record shop and bar. The banh mi (above), is fresh, light and perky as hell – definitely worth your £5 for sure. I feel for them, being stuck in that basement. It’s kinda dark down there and it’s hard to find them. Also, no matter what you think about Instagram and Twitter, shares on social media can grow a small business and spread the word; a dark basement site isn’t helping matters.

Banh Banh x Rye Wax, CLF Arts Cafe/Bussey Building, 133 Rye Lane, Peckham, SE15 4ST

18. JB’s Soul Food and Jerk Chicken 

Some decent jerk chicken in Peckham! Well I never. Here’s an article I wrote about it for The Peckham Peculiar. I haven’t been recently.

JB’s Soul Food and Jerk Chicken, 27A Peckham High Street, SE15 5EB

19. Cafe Spice

For all your Nigerian snack needs. Go here for moin moin (steamed bean pudding), puff puff (like Nigerian doughnuts), meat stick (does what it says on the tin) and other classic, larger dishes.

Cafe Spice, 88 Rye Lane, SE15

20. Momo’s 

This street food truck serving North African food can be found opposite ASDA on Rye Lane. This guy serves up frankly huge wraps in lovely flatbread flavoured with cumin and fennel, which he makes himself. His falafels aren’t bad, and there’s a selection of hummus and pickles. I think he could trim down the selection and focus a little on making fewer items but hey, the wraps are large, tasty and extremely good value at £4.

21. Blackbird Bakery

A branch of Blackbird has opened up in one of the railway arches next to Queen’s Road Station. I haven’t been in but it looks quite large and apparently they are also doing pizza in the evenings. Open until 10pm. Anyone been?

They don’t seem to have updated their website with the Peckham branch yet so here is the Facebook page which is more useful.

Noted omissions: I’ve never braved Cafe Viva because it’s always so crammed with buggies. Sorry, Cafe Viva. I’m not really into Petitou because they always seem so standoffish and it really ain’t all that, and I’ve yet to check out Kitchen 54. Anyone been?

Bars and Pubs

1. The Montpelier

I used to practically live in the Monty when I was further up that end of Rye Lane. When I moved I had to say goodbye but we had an intense and full on relationship while it lasted so I don’t mourn the loss too badly. What I like about the Monty is that it’s very laid back, they don’t cram too many seats inside and it just has a calm atmosphere. They show films in a room at the back and have live music occasionally. The beer isn’t even that good but they do at least have Mean Time and that stealthy bitch, Old Rosie cider. They no longer serve Old Rosie, sadly. Apart from weekend lunch times it doesn’t get taken over by parents with young children, which is a miracle considering its proximity to East Dulwich.

The Montpelier, 43 Choumert Rd, SE15 4AR

2. Bar Story

Bar Story is pretty scrotty but nevertheless gets away with it, probably due to its location under the railway arches. Frequented by art students, they have a gallery in the back and the whole place has an air of creativity about it. They also do cool pop ups like the recent Thai grill with Andy Oliver.

Bar Story, 213 Blenheim Grove, SE15 4QL

3. Frank’s Cafe and Campari Bar

The outrageously popular rooftop bar returns every year between the months of July-September. With reasonably priced cocktails, a kick ass view and a great atmosphere, it’s definitely worth climbing an ammonia scented stairwell for. Or you know, take the lift.

Frank’s Campari Bar, 10th Floor, Peckham Multi-Story Car Park, 95a Rye Lane, SE15 4ST

4. The Bussey Building

Man, have I had some nights in The Bussey. I shall say no more. See their website for details of upcoming events. They’ve now got a rooftop bar I believe, although I haven’t been up there.

The Bussey Building, 133 Rye Lane, SE15 4ST

5. Ali Baba Juice Bar

This place is simply AWESOME. You may not think you could ever get excited about juice and trust me, I didn’t think I could either, but they honestly make the most delicious combinations. The kale, apple and basil (again, trust me) is excellent, as is the mango pickle. Oh and they put baobab in their lemonade (it’s sort of like a sherberty African fruit thing). They also have a snack bar. Yeah! Go.

Ali Baba Juice, 125c Rye Lane, Peckham, SE15 4ST

6. New Opening: Dead Doll’s House (launch weekend 19th-21st June)

I’ve put this into pubs because it’s on the old Clayton Arms site  (you know, that exceptionally manky old pub that just wouldn’t close down) and it will be a bar, although it will also be a restaurant. This is a sister venue to the established Dead Doll’s Club in Islington which is a cocktail bar, restaurant and live music venue in a Victorian Townhouse.

Dead Dolls Peckham, 1 Clayton Road,Peckham,SE15 5JA

7. Brick Brewery

Our very own brewery, right on Peckham Rye! I love how this place is all like “this is a brewery but we’ve slung a few seats outside so you can have a drink if you want to”. It reminds me of the craft beer places in San Diego. The beer is great, the people are friendly and they have a street food pitch at the front which has a different stall every week or so.

Brick Brewery, Arch 209, Blenheim Grove, SE15 4QL

Food Shops

1. Persepolis

Everyone’s favourite yellow corner shop. Go here for all your Persian ingredient needs. If you can’t find that unusual grain needed for the latest Ottolenghi recipe, don’t worry, Sally will almost certainly have it. The most important purchase you can make at Persepolis however, is obviously MY JERK MARINADE!


Persepolis, 28-30 Peckham High St, SE15 5DT

2. Khan’s

The awesome old Khan’s sign – ‘walk in and see the variety’ – sadly now replaced.

Everyone knows I have a lot of love for the ramshackle temple of random that is Khan’s Bargain Ltd. The veg is usually really cheap and fresh – I say usually because they do have the occasional off day. The beans, pulses and grains section is second to none, they stock the best flat breads EVER and you know where to go if you ever want a plastic animal. Read my full post about Khan’s here.

Khan’s Bargain Ltd, 135 Rye Lane, SE15 4ST

3. General Store

General Store is a relatively new addition to Peckham, in the Bellenden area, which is known as the ‘posh bit’. This shop could not be more Bellenden if it tried; suitably expensive, but also full of high quality stuff including a small cheese selection and some more unusual veg – this is the place to go for your fractal-tastic romanesco cauli or samphire. Like I said, it’s the posh bit.

General Store, 174 Bellenden Road, SE15 

4. Flock and Herd

We are stupendously lucky to have this butcher on Bellenden Rd. Opened by ex-ginger pig manager Charlie, it has gone from strength to strength and now queues out of the door are a familiar sight. Peckham Jerk Marinade may well be stocked there soon. W Bunting is also pretty good, right at the other end of Peckham.

Flock and Herd, 155 Bellenden Rd, SE15 4DH

5. Veg and Meat on Rye Lane and The High Street

If General Store is in ‘new Peckham’ then this place is very much ‘old Peckham’ or ‘proper Peckham’ as I like to call it; this is where the energy lies. Basically the deal with the greengrocers all along Rye Lane and the High Street is that they sell a lot of the same stuff, but you just need to single out your favourite. I will go to different shops for different vegetables. E.g. I always go to the place by the station for spinach and corn, as it’s usually freshest. I will go to Khan’s for herbs. And so on. United Meats is the only place I will buy goat in Peckham. All the other butchers aside from Flock and Herd = avoid. Fish is a total no-go I’m afraid, you’ll have to go to Moxon’s in East Dulwich which I rate over Soper’s in Nunhead.

United Meats, 62 Peckham High St, SE15 5DP

If it’s African ingredients like dried shrimp, fish and every single Maggi product under the sun that you want, then any of the shops will sort you out. The African land snails are available from a place about halfway up Rye Lane every year. No I haven’t yet tried them.

6. Wing Tai

This isn’t the biggest Chinese/Asian supermarket in the world but boy, do they cram it all in there.

Wing Tai, Wing Tai Supermarket, Unit 11a The Aylesham Centre, Rye Lane, SE15 5EW

7. Kim Lien Mini Market 

This is another Asian Supermarket. I found out from the Ali Baba juice guys that they have these steamed pork buns and glutinous rice balls under the counter ready to go. Also, they apparently do their own banh mi but I haven’t managed to come across one yet. A very occasional occurrence I think which makes me want one even more.

Over to you!

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  • Avatar
    Reply Sam October 11, 2013 at 11:17 am

    The lack of good Jerk in Peckham is really infuriating, whenever I get a craving I have to hop on my bike down to Smokey Jerky.

    What about Suya? I know the beef varies in quality but the Chicken is always spot on.

    • Avatar
      Reply Helen October 11, 2013 at 11:23 am

      Yes, really annoying! I did consider putting suya in but every time I’ve been recently it’s been rubbish 🙁 It made me sad. I’ll give the chicken a go though and maybe it can go back in!

  • Avatar
    Reply donald October 11, 2013 at 11:34 am

    Pelican, nice atmosphere and pretty good beers. Cafe Viva, ace banana bread there last week. Also there’s the Cinnamon Tree bakery that I need to poke my nose into..

    • Avatar
      Reply Helen October 11, 2013 at 11:43 am

      Oh I didn’t know Pelican was licensed. It’s suddenly become more attractive.

  • Avatar
    Reply Amardeep October 11, 2013 at 12:21 pm

    The Tiger pub did a very good sunday roast when i was there a couple of weeks ago. worth a try.

    • Avatar
      Reply Helen October 11, 2013 at 12:22 pm

      Ah yes, I know it. Never really been in for some reason. I shall give it a go, thanks.

  • Avatar
    Reply Dean October 11, 2013 at 1:14 pm

    Carravaggio’s – good value local Italian, with great, hearty, fresh specials. Fantastic value wine list too.
    Crooked Well – for food it’s definately the best around. It’s not ‘cheap’ but seldom lets you down. Chateaubriand special is fantastic.
    The Grand Union – ok pub, usually has seats when others are full. Does decent burgers.
    Su Thai (Cold Harbour Lane) is a hidden gem, really good value Thai restaurant not as good as TBB, but good enough for Jay Rayner to get his takeaways from there.

    • Avatar
      Reply Helen October 11, 2013 at 1:22 pm

      I’ve always wondered about Su Thai so will give it a go, thanks! Caravaggio’s – I have just had terrible food there…and last time we went the waiter tried to wrestle the wine list away from my boyfriend, it was really weird. People seem to love it and I did consider it but just couldn’t put it on there based on the food I’ve had. The Grand Union again had a bad experience when I waited over an hour for a burger then just had to leave. Thinking about giving Su Thai a go tonight now…

  • Avatar
    Reply Simon October 11, 2013 at 1:31 pm

    Some more good places in Camberwell for you
    (all worth a visit)

    The Sun (former Sun and Doves)
    The Tiger
    George Canning

    Love Walk Cafe

    Angels and Gypsies – fantastic
    The Vineyard – good for standard Greek, good atmosphere
    Moloko (formerly Olive Shop) – fantastic crepe/galette place
    Vietnamese place next to George Canning on Grove Lane
    New Italian place Gusto looks interesting (opposite Nandos)

    • Avatar
      Reply Helen October 11, 2013 at 1:36 pm

      I’m sorry but I can’t contain my contempt for The Vineyard. Anywhere that can charge the bones of £30 for a bottle of Martini Asti (listed on the menu as ‘sparkling wine’) should have legal action taken against them. I’ve never had good food there I’m afraid.

      Johanssons I do visit for a sandwich now and then. Not bad and I like the salad they do with it.

      Love Walk cafe I think is terrible. Rude staff and they make the worst bacon sandwich in the entire world (

      Quite like The Sun! I work at King’s so it’s very useful. I would have included it had they not made me sick with a scotch egg that wasn’t cooked once.

      Another vote for The Tiger! Must go back…

      Thanks for the suggestions! Don’t mean to be so dismissive of a couple of them but as I said, some places were deliberately left out. Have you been to Love Walk Cafe recently? I just can’t believe they are capable of making anything edible.

  • Avatar
    Reply Louise October 11, 2013 at 1:51 pm

    Thanks for mentioning Zeret Kitchen! Had no idea it was there and have been sorely missing injera and dorowat since moving south of the river, will definitely try it out!

    • Avatar
      Reply Helen October 11, 2013 at 1:52 pm

      Oh my goodness it is one of the best, you have to go!

  • Avatar
    Reply Tara (aka Craftilicious) October 11, 2013 at 4:42 pm

    everytime I read a post about Peckham from you like this you make me hungry and desperate to move in equal measure – this is no exception!

    • Avatar
      Reply Helen October 11, 2013 at 4:43 pm

      Ha ha, sorry!

  • Avatar
    Reply Esther October 11, 2013 at 4:45 pm

    Hurrah, I was looking at your Peckham Food & Drink map just today and wondering if you were going to do an update..

    I can’t fill in many of the gaps but I do have a soft spot for the Pelican as my closest bar – they’ve made good use of the space so far for art, music and other events (e.g. body painting before Notting Hill Carnival) and the staff are very friendly. Melange is worth a mention as probably the only place locally that will do a lactose-free hot chocolate…

    I have been meaning to try Tiwa n Tiwa which opened this summer opposite Lidl on Bellenden Rd and Ram Jam the jerk place opposite Persepolis – have you been to either?

    Also, a bit further afield, but I had an absolutely fantastic wrap on Sunday from the Malaysian Deli opposite Crofton Park station, worth checking out if you find yourself in the area.

    PS: Cannot wait to go to ‘Asian Takeaway’ – thanks for the tip.

    • Avatar
      Reply Helen October 11, 2013 at 4:47 pm

      yeah i thought it was about time I sorted it out! I haven’t been to either of the places you asked about I’m afraid. Sorry! I will make sure to poke my nose in next time I’m passing by.

  • Avatar
    Reply Tim October 12, 2013 at 10:41 am

    Hah! Peckham and Camberwell are so last wednesday! I have lived and loved in Camberwell for nigh on 20 years, but now i live in Brockley i have to make the most of what is on my new doorstep.
    The first thing was to find a surrogate silk road (of course there is no substitute and we still go there regularly). Taste inn in lewisham is pretty good for our sichuan pepper fix. Cheap, and they deliver! Their cumin chicken chicken is particularly good and my wife swears by the shredded potato with garlic loaded with sichuan pepper.
    The tiny Sri Lankan enclave of Loampit hill is great. The Everest and vinishas are both great and super cheap. Check out the enormous bowl of freshly cooked biryani with about 50 boiled eggs on top as you walk in to the Everest.
    Lewisham is pretty amazing for shopping too. A couple each of good Chinese, turkish and indian supermarkets, and a neat little italian deli too.
    Deptford is worth a shout too. Bizarrely, when camberwell’s wing tai closed, it left no asian shops in camberwell whereas in Deptford on my last count there were at least 7 oriental shops and quite a few Vietnamese restaurants.
    Talking of vietnamese, the New Saigon (that crazy looking orange and silver pub on Old Kent Road and technically in Peckham) is worth checking out. Their fried prawns and pho are particularly tasty. Also, if you’re lucky you can catch the loudest karaoke system in south london!
    So before the canton arms (and Jay Rayner) comes to camberwell and seals the deal on Peckham and Camberwell’s foody credentials, you can still find decent food adventures in nearby SE london. Sadly, a lack of decent pubs though. Oh well, back to the ‘mits.

    • Avatar
      Reply Helen October 12, 2013 at 10:44 am

      Yeah I guess my next task is to do guides for the surrounding areas. Took me so long to write this though it will be a while before I can face it!

  • Avatar
    Reply Mael October 12, 2013 at 12:18 pm

    There are bits of this review I could have written myself. I fell in love with TFC this summer. Perhaps I shouldn’t (because I will regret it next summer) but they were selling cherries at £3/kg which turned out to be terrific, most of the summer. I don’t think we’ve ever eaten so many clafoutis.

    I share your opinion in most cases above, Helen (apart from fishmongers. Moxon’s over Soper’s? Come on. But then I’m a Nunheader). And I would only like to point you in the direction of Bambuni in Nunhead for a terrific selection of booze (wines, beers, sherries), cheeses, charcuteries and many other things that give the East Dulwich Deli a run for its money (ah ah bloody ah). Thanks to the dedication of Huey, who runs it. The Nun’s Head pub is becoming a bit of a real ale destination, too (but surely you know, with your Frog on the Green / Peckham Bazaar connections). Nunhead / Peckham / Bellenden / Camberwell. We’re quite lucky aren’t we.

    • Avatar
      Reply Helen October 12, 2013 at 12:26 pm

      Ha! Yes of course I do know re: Nunhead. It’s hard though you know and I had to make a cut off somewhere, just couldn’t go all up into Nunhead too. The TFC also do really lovely red grapes, very sweet, seedless and with a magnificent pop every time you bite one. I had no idea it was even there for ages.

  • Avatar
    Reply Jay Rayner October 12, 2013 at 1:52 pm

    From the ‘for what it’s worth’ dept: I’ve never eaten at, let alone got a take away from Su Thai. Mine always come from Kaorsarn.

  • Avatar
    Reply Mael October 12, 2013 at 7:05 pm

    Jay, I’ve got to say – if you ever check the forum (the scion of the now infamous GuardianTalk) I confessed there this morning to having dreamt of you last night. You were taking my bottle of beer away telling me that I had to drink it in a glass. And then you brought the wrong glass. This was the extent of your oneirical appearance.

  • Avatar
    Reply Huey October 14, 2013 at 10:34 am

    @Mael – thanks for the mention! Awww, poor us in Nunhead, we’re just that bit too far up/down the road again!

    @Helen – some great positive reviews, of which I wholeheartedly agree with most, and on the down side – couldn’t agree more re The Vineyard – beyond a joke!
    Just wanted to mention that amongst our 100 odd beers we stock your beloved Jaipur . . it’s ALWAYS in stock, and we are fully licenced for you to drink said beer on the premises for the same price as it is to take home. You can even drink it out of the bottle if you like 🙂


    • Avatar
      Reply Helen October 14, 2013 at 10:36 am

      Hi Huey,

      I will get there eventually! Promise promise. I can’t believe you have Jaipur. I must come down and sink a few. I really adore that beer. I will also drink it out of the bottle because we all know it keeps colder that way…

      The Vineyard. It makes me angry grrrr.

  • Avatar
    Reply Lesley October 15, 2013 at 5:33 am

    I had no idea there was a TFC in South London! I will have to check it out. Mind you, I live between Brixton and Herne Hill so food shopping a-plenty, including the fabulous Nour Cash and Carry, Brixton’s answer to Khan’s.

    • Avatar
      Reply Helen October 15, 2013 at 1:26 pm

      Yeah Nour is ace! And yeah, the TFC is tucked back from the road – sneaks up out of nowhere.

  • Avatar
    Reply Em October 15, 2013 at 3:07 pm

    Falafel is good! I’m addicted to the stuff, but I guess it’s quite healthy so not too bad 🙂 I’m working my way around some of the Indian restaurants in Camberwell at the moment:

    • Avatar
      Reply Helen October 15, 2013 at 4:21 pm

      Ooh brilliant! Keep up the good work. I shall take a look.

  • Avatar
    Reply Clip Creative and PR October 18, 2013 at 4:17 pm

    wow, these places look delicious and we are based in London! I’ll have to visit these places when I get the chance, thanks for posting!

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    Reply Lizzie October 28, 2013 at 12:47 pm

    Thanks for the linky! There’s a new Asian supermarket opened up on Rye Lane – nearer the park end. It’s pretty good for dried stuff, though Wing Tai wins.

    Some friends went recently to Lovely House and told me it was a massive disappointment.

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      Reply Helen October 28, 2013 at 12:50 pm

      Yeah it’s a bit smaller that one innit. I don’t really get up that end any more! Bad news about Lovely House – I did have my suspicions.

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    Reply Becky October 28, 2013 at 2:34 pm

    Worth revisiting Wuli Wuli as the menu has changed, with more of an emphasis on Schezuan food. Love the dumplings and noodles in chilli soup.

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      Reply Helen October 28, 2013 at 2:37 pm

      I ordered it the other night actually! it was ok, just nowhere near the standard it used to be which is a shame. Still, a lot better than many others in the area.

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    Reply jo boissevain November 1, 2013 at 6:42 pm

    Seeing as I’m moving from Clifton to Peckham this is just brilliant.

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    Reply AM November 10, 2013 at 2:04 pm

    Carravaggio: too much on the menu, but do great pizza (available for takeaway)
    The Vineyard: frustrating, a specials menu would be great, but it’s not cheap for what it is
    The Grand Union: really wish they would get rid of the neon in there. No need.
    Johanssons: great evening dining, lovely rear garden.

    Moloko: best new addition to camberwell beyond doubt. Great food, great coffee, fantastically friendly.

    Anyone know what is happening at the [everlasting] building site on grove lane past johanssons??

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      Reply Helen November 10, 2013 at 2:06 pm

      No idea what is happening on Grove Lane! There’s a new pizza place opening too, The Oregano Leaf I think? I never have high hopes for these places sadly. Yes, Moloko! I must add it in. Fantastic rice pancakes I’ve heard.

      The Vineyard ARGH. I can’t reiterate enough what an absolute joke that place is. I’ve never been to Johanssons in the evening and I really must. Their sandwiches are always underwhelming so I’ve never considered it. Is it a Swedish menu?

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    Reply AM November 11, 2013 at 9:21 pm

    I’d heard there was a deli or food type emporium silimar to the shop on bellenden road. No idea how true that is though. I’ve my fingers crossed!
    Yep I think the pizza place is a chain, will take a lot to divert me from carravaggio for my American hots.
    Johanssons does have a Swedish bent, things that go well with red wine, but remember having good fish there. Haven’t been in a while I have to say.

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    Reply Sharon November 20, 2013 at 1:54 pm

    Yet another vote for The Tiger pub in Camberwell. The head chef there hails from Pitt Cut Co. and the ox heart wraps are AMAZING. Portions are generous, too.

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    Reply esme December 8, 2013 at 2:57 pm

    I’ve come late to this discussion, but am genuinely surprised these lists never mention Van Hing – Vietnamese with the most incredibly complex pho, amazing fresh salads, abundant with herbs, beautiful banh cuon. I eat there once a week, at least, love the place. Recommend the pork with vermicelli, crispy and melting, just beautiful lemon grass flavours.

    I should probably keep quiet as I would hate for the prices to go up etc (it’s pretty good value), but am incredulous that this place could be dismissed as just a bog standard Chinese takeaway spot.

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      Reply Helen December 8, 2013 at 3:00 pm

      Not having tried it most definitely does not equate to ‘dismissing it’.

      I’ll get myself over there.

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    Reply Catherine December 17, 2013 at 4:21 pm

    There’s a newish (October) Portuguese Cafe/Deli on Church Street with very good custard tarts, and extremely reasonably priced £1 to eat in and 90 pence to take away. Have you been there yet? I also noticed two Italian places on Denmark Hill, same side as the Banh Mi place. They looked newish to me. Went to Turkish Food Centre today and bought one of those cheese pastries you raved about. Are they better warm or cold? Was going to have mine for dinner later.

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      Reply Helen December 17, 2013 at 4:22 pm

      I’ve never eaten mine warm so I don’t know! I always scoff it cold as I can’t wait. I haven’t tried the Portugese place yet no but I walk past it every day. Yes I’ve noticed the two new places and there’s a really new place on the opposite side which I need to check out – can’t remember the name but it’s a cafe.

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    Reply Mette December 30, 2013 at 12:12 am

    I have recently had many fantastic breakfasts at Love Walk Cafe. You should definitely give them another chance. Their coffees and their full English brekkie puts me in a very good mood for the weekend. Extremely busy – book in advance if you’re more than two.

    Petitou (63 Choumert Rd) – decor, charming/totally ramshackle. Excellent scrambled eggs. Great coffee – very lo-fi, but keep returning.

    Blue Mountain Cafe (18 North Cross Rd) – East Dulwich territory, but only just. Fab food, great service, charming staff – lovely, arty vibe.

    The Victoria Inn (77 Choumert Rd) – beautiful pub, good food, charming staff, great vibe – food too expensive.

    Caravaggio – kinda romantic. Great for pasta and pizza, stay well clear of all else.
    Vineyard – food so depressing I nearly cried.
    Johansson – good for breakfast (I like the ‘all you can eat, toaster self-service’) but trying to look Swedish definitely doesn’t make Swedish.

    Angels & Gypsies – stylish place, staff ok, decent tapas, ridiculous prices.
    Crooked Well – stylish and expensive. Food was very good. I liked it. Didn’t love it. Found it a bit sterile.

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      Reply Helen December 30, 2013 at 10:03 am

      Hi Mette, thank you for your comment. I will give Love Walk Cafe another go, then. I’ll have a full English. Has it changed hands? I remember the scrambled eggs at Petitou being HUGE. I can’t remember why I didn’t like it now, so should make a return visit there. I’m not sure I can go back to Caravaggio though after a really weird incident with one of the staff (!). Agreed on prices at Angels and Gypsies which is a shame. The staff are great there. Their new bar is quite fun – downstairs…expensive though (surprise) and their martini needs work. Agree on crooked well too, although I do think they make a nice cocktail.

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    Reply Oli January 10, 2014 at 5:22 pm

    Buddha Jazz on Grove Lane which is up the hill before the George Canning does a cracking Pho and other less well known Vietnamese dishes. The Dim Sum there is pretty good too. The staff are lovely but as word of warning; they are partial to playing James Blunt.

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    Reply Becky February 6, 2014 at 6:52 pm

    Great post- this plus many other reviews and recommendations mean that I’m the lucky owner of one table for two tonight at Silk Road (I live in camber well and have done for years but have never been able to get a table just by turning up!)
    I look forward to it!
    My camberwell favourites:
    The tiger really does do a mean roast – best hangover cute in town.
    Crooked well is a nice sensible place. I take my mum when she visits as she’s somewhat scared of camberwell and it soothes her. I like their peppery rimmed margaritas.
    I rate angels and gypsies – had a fantastic rabbit stew recently – but agreed it’s too pricey and therefore only for special occasions.
    FM mangal – I’ve eaten there countless times and love love love it / but had a terrible time last time I went. Rotten service, my meal never showed up and then was told it was sold out and hour after I ordered it. Staff recommended a ‘healthier’ alternative which I found patronising and rude. I will go back but I need a little time!
    Can’t wait to try some of your peckham recommendations!
    Thanks for the tips !

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      Reply Helen February 7, 2014 at 9:23 am

      I went to Angels and Gypsies recently but had to complain and ask for something to be taken off the bill. The service was laughable too. That’s such a shame about your experience at F M Mangal. I am sad to hear it.

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    Reply Terd February 23, 2014 at 11:49 am


    I live on the borders too, near what was the Cadeleigh. We must be neighbours.

    Great summary. I’ve eaten in almost all these places over the past decade.

    Just wanted to thank you for the Asian place off Rye Lane. I’d never have noticed that. Had a kofte wrap yesterday and it was great. Will be going back for the curries. I like these tray places and previously would go to Chatkhara near Elephant. This place has a bit less choice is much more convenient. TBH I often struggle for cheap, punchy eats like that in Peckham, especially on the curry front.

    Ganapati, Wuli and maybe Mangal are probs my picks of the area.

    C Well and Angels are pricey but nice for a treat. They’re my go to ‘occasion’ dining options in the area.

    Bear good but hit and miss, too much miss for the £ so I don’t go any more. I thought the Begging Bowl was a rip-off. It was shocking.

    Silk Rd was great back in the day when it was ‘new’ but I’ve gone off it a bit. It’s still good though. Likewise Falafel, which I overdid. We need a few more ready eats options like that in the area.

    Agree on Vineyard. Caravaggio nice for a well-priced pizza. The Tiger is my pick for reasonably priced and good pub food. Burgers at GU OK for a change now and then. Manze’s rocks.

    Gowlett pizzas OK but what’s the fuss about. For some Caribbean, Rice and Peas was good last time I went but then you’re heading into East Dul really.


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    Reply Sarah March 7, 2014 at 8:50 pm

    For good jerk chicken and rice and peas go to Nice and Spice bakery on Coldharbour lane. It’s takeaway, huge portions, very tasty and always busy.

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    Reply gordan April 11, 2014 at 6:47 am

    Great little black book.
    Have you been to Sophocles bakery they have great koubes bulgar wheat wrapped lamb mince patties, made locally excellent excellent street food on the fly
    Wui Wui great service have had some fab meals there especially after hours
    Crooked well friendly good food nice manager
    Angels and Gypsies great tapas, best salt cod tortilla I’ve ever had (lunch time amazing pork tacos my little treat to myself)
    Golden grill lamb burger for a late night tipple, old school sloppy
    The bear my favourite pub
    Franklins in East Dulwich like this place a lot simple and tasty
    Peckham Bazaar? hmmmm ok
    Camberwell Arms really wanted to like this place, think they had an off day will try again
    Best Jerk Chicken Queens road Peckham next to police station their rub marinade is ON. Haven’t tried your jerk Helen but this place is amazing Jerk really it is

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      Reply Helen April 11, 2014 at 12:24 pm

      Hi Gordan,

      Thanks! Glad you like the black book. I am yet to try that jerk place, thanks for the tip! I have to say though, think you might be in the wrong place to make the Peckham Bazaar comment?! Ha ha. Also, John (of Peckham Bazaar) is my favourite cook in the world, so….totally unbiased of course. He is, though.

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    Reply Louisa April 21, 2014 at 8:13 pm

    portugues cafe deli is a very cosey place to sit and relax to enjoy the traditional custard tarts!! The sandwiches there are clean and delicious , especially the bacon sandwiches. I also love the Brazilian savouries that they make in the kitchen . Defiantly one of my favorites in camberwell

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    Reply Jonboy Sunrise Curry Club April 23, 2014 at 2:59 pm

    Sunrise Curry Club are a food pop-up crew based in north London, we’ve done a lot of trading in East London so far as well. Having heard great things about Camberwell we are now coming down south for some events. We will be at The Old Dispensary with our backyard tandoor ovens from May 1st-3rd serving a range of meat and veg kebabs, fresh naans, salads and snacks. Please come try and let us know what you think!

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    Reply Jessie July 9, 2014 at 1:21 pm

    I keep coming back and back to your guide to help me navigate my eating in the area! Thank you so much. Have you tried Maloko? I hear good things.

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      Reply Helen July 9, 2014 at 2:07 pm

      I need to update it! Yeah I have…I’m not their biggest fan because they don’t seem to understand that food needs salt, and a salad needs dressing on it. It’s a shame really because the pancakes could be nice and they’re certainly good value.

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        Reply Andrea February 2, 2015 at 8:12 am

        Tried it. Like it a lot for having a fresh mint tea. Love the simplicity of the place. Can’t get over eating a pancake from a wet (hopefully just washed?) wooden chopping board…

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    Reply Lesley August 8, 2014 at 11:29 pm

    We went to the Camberwell Arms tonight and were seriously impressed. Not a single fault could I find, other than they put ice in the cognac. Very impressive as the kitchen is roughly the size of mine. Recommended.

    Next on my list is Artusi.

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      Reply Helen August 10, 2014 at 12:30 pm

      Artusi is also brilliant. I need to update this guide to include both of them! The Camberwell Arms I basically live in as it’s next to my house. The sandwiches aren’t great, but other than that, brilliant.

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    Reply Hi September 1, 2014 at 10:30 pm

    Momo’s Moroccan and North African food just opposite and down from Asda on Rye Lane is one of the best falafel wraps you’ll ever eat. There’s also Late Knight’s just opened on Queens Road, not far from the station, a proper chilled little bar and good beers. Also Crossroads on Bellenden Road does a banging fry up etc and it’s cheap! And lastly there’s a blues and soul food night my mates running (maybe monthly?) On thursdays At The Peckham Pelican which is a good venue for a drink regardless.

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      Reply Helen September 2, 2014 at 8:10 am

      Thanks! I really need to update this. I shall do it this weekend. Thanks for the falafel tip. I’d never noticed it.

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    Reply Lesley September 20, 2014 at 9:21 pm

    I liked artusi, but not as much as The Camberwell Arms, which I visited again last week. Artusi managed to get our starter order wrong three times, which was quite impressive given there were only two of us and the menu is short. And the wine wasn’t great.

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      Reply Helen September 21, 2014 at 7:36 am

      I love the camberwell arms too. It’s so close to me. I practically live there

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    Reply Andrea February 2, 2015 at 8:09 am

    Hi All, I’m new to Camberwell and need to rely on your wisdom here: can anyone point me to a good fish and chips? What are your thoughts on the Flying Fish? The BYO sounds good, but the place is always so empty…

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      Reply Helen February 3, 2015 at 3:58 pm

      I’ve never been to the Flying Fish but lookig at the fish I’d avoid like the plague

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        Reply Andrea February 16, 2015 at 10:57 am

        Yeah, I thought so. The place looks rather dingy… Any fish & chips alternatives around here though?

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          Reply Helen February 17, 2015 at 12:20 am

          Not that I know of. You’ll have to get on a bus to Masters Superfish.

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    Reply Jordan April 7, 2015 at 7:30 pm

    Lovely House on Bellenden is amazing, you must try! Beats Chinatown hands down.

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      Reply Helen April 8, 2015 at 1:45 pm

      I’ve never been but I’ve often walked past and wondered what it’s like.

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    Reply James June 22, 2015 at 4:21 pm

    I’ve had the chicken and waffles in Kitchen54 and it was pretty decent, it’s £6.So!?!? People in there were friendly and its byo

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      Reply Helen June 22, 2015 at 4:29 pm

      Ah yes! I’ve not made it down to Kitchen54 yet. They seem to be really into waffles! Is it fried chicken? I’ll have to check it out. Also, BYO is never, ever a bad thing.

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    Reply Andrea Chute June 30, 2015 at 11:12 am

    Hi Helen,

    Enjoyed the deep dish article, You should also take a look at Bramblette Fruit Farm’s market stall. They are outside Peckham library on Sundays.



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      Reply Helen June 30, 2015 at 11:14 am

      Thanks Andrea, will do!

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    Reply Isabel July 6, 2015 at 6:32 pm

    Kitchen 54 is great! Fried chicken with buffalo sauce was crispy, spicy and sour… Addictive. good value and the front of house guy is so welcoming. They don’t sell booze yet but I think you can bring your own.

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      Reply Helen July 7, 2015 at 12:01 pm

      That’s brilliant, thanks Isabel!

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    Reply Tim July 24, 2015 at 3:17 pm

    I’d consider popping The Hope on Melon Road (I saw the building go up – how did they fit such a spacious place into such a small area?) into the bars/pubs section. It only opened a little while ago and each time I’ve stopped by for a swift half it’s been sadly bereft of patrons, despite the fact it has this wonderfully calm ambience and friendly warmth about it. I’ve also noticed that afternoon guests at the Dead Dolls House tend to gravitate towards it in the evening to switch from cocktails-in-jam-jars to pints-in-handled-mugs.

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    Reply Lisa August 7, 2015 at 3:26 pm

    Blackbird bakery is great- service could do with speeding up a bit, but they have great home made sausage rolls which are delish for a quick bite on the go. They also made me an off menu avocado & bacon on toast once which was perfect!

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