Thursday, May 16, 2013

London Guide: Twickenham - Part One

The town of Twickenham may not technically be in London,
although it is certainly part of Greater London,
but it has been my home for the last two years and its holds
a pretty special place in my heart now.

I may be partial, but I think Twickenham has a lot to offer.
It's not central London, but it definitely has a small-town,
community feel, that I have decided must be shared.

So here is Part One of some of the best that Twickenham has to offer
(certainly in no particular order...this post has mostly been dictated
by those places for which I had my own photos readily available).

1. Ruben's Bakehouse
Ruben's Bakehouse is a fairly recent edition to the high street.
According to their website, Ruben quit his job as an interior designer
last year in order to pursue his passion for artisan bread and join
the Real Bread Campaign.  I am very glad he did. The bakery
offers a large selection of freshly baked loaves, baked goods, pizza
and focaccia, and you can order and collect or find a stall at a local
farmers' market, in addition to dropping in to the Bakehouse.
The brioche is seriously amazing, and they do a Twickenham cottage loaf.

2. Ales & Tales
Another recent edition to Twickenham, Ales & Tales not only has the
fantastically ridiculous wallpaper shown above, but is very well designed -
every piece of decor in this craft bar is well thought out, but doesn't come
across as over-laboured.  Offering craft beer, imports, and "lost" cocktails
(read: traditional cocktails with fine ingredients), this bar is a bit
on the pricey side for a night out, but is definitely a good place if you're stopping
in for just a cocktail or two. I have yet to try the food, but they do 
have an impressive menu that is certainly more gastro-pub/restaurant
than it is pub grub.

3. The Sussex Arms
K and I went to the Sussex Arms nearly every Sunday this winter.
This real ale pub has 18 different ales and ciders on tap at all times,
rotating them constantly, and over 50 different bottles of ale, beer
and cider to choose from, as well as a respectable wine list.
They also do the best Sunday roast that I have ever had at a pub
(K makes a mean Sunday roast - his are the best I've ever had).
Their roasts include beef, pork belly, chicken and lamb shank
and are huge.  If you want a smaller version, they also do "roast butties,"
which consist of the roast meat of your choice on a sandwich and
it's still served with roast potatoes, a Yorkshire pudding and gravy - 
and all for the magical price of £5.95.  With two open fire places,
I like to nestle into one of the benches with a Sunday paper and a pint.

4. Hammerton's Ferry
Making the crossing from Marble Hill Park to Ham House, the
Twickenham institution that is Hammerton's Ferry is certainly
a fun and efficient way to get across the Thames. Otherwise, you
have to walk down to Teddington Lock or to Richmond - a few miles
on either side of the river - in order to get across to the other side.
It's only £1 for adults per crossing, and there's just something about it
that makes me smile. You also get a great view of Richmond Hill from
the middle of the river when you're crossing.

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