So, much like The Dacre Arms, The Spice of Life is a lovely place, just outside Blackheath. I had to investigate, after seeing so many positive comments about the place, on this blog, and on loads of other web sites. Comments along the lines of “this is my favourite Indian restaurant, I’ve been going there for fifteen years, etc etc”.
So off we went on Thursday evening. And it wasn’t empty, but it was quiet. It was smaller than I expected, but very welcoming and friendly looking.. To be honest, the decor looked as though it hadn’t changed since the mid eighties, (which matched the music nicely). But who cares, because the food was absolutely first rate.
Delicious and light, not too fiery, a really nice blend of flavours. We’re not meat eaters, so can’t comment on that, but the saag paneer, and vegetable dopiaza were lovely, along with some pilau rice, a chipati, and some yoghurt. Great stuff.
They also had a very mysterious looking orange sauce with the poppadoms. When we asked, we were told that it was the chef’s own invention, and that it was based on carrots. And the whole lot came to £25.60 including drinks for two people. The only downside is that they don’t deliver (but you can pick up a take-away).
260 Lee High Rd
London, SE13 5PL
Google map here.
Well, I had to give this one a try… After the rave reviews on a couple of pub websites, and the glowing comments right here in the Bugle, the new bike was taken to The Dacre Arms to see what we were missing out on. It’s a little bit outside Blackheath, but definitely worth it, and walkable from the station-end of the village.
You get that lovely sensation of “this must be the wrong road… There can’t possibly be a pub down here, this looks like a cul de sa… Oh, there it is!” when you go exploring to find this place (reminds me of The Clifton Arms over in North London, back in another lifetime).
I had a good pint of Courage Best, and Twiglets! How marvelous! Haven’t had Twiglets since this was the future of computing… I don’t think they do food, but frankly I didn’t care after I saw the Twiglets (I’m easily pleased).
It is a very nice “locals” sort of pub. No sweeping views of the heath here, but good beer, nice atmosphere, and pleasant beer garden outside…. Nothing showy (no picture frames hanging outside a la Princess of Wales), but nonetheless a nice place to sit and relax on a warm summer evening.
Beer in the evening review.
Fancy a pint review.
Google Map here.
Strada is probably in danger of becoming the current decade’s equivalent of the Berni Inn. They seem to be ubiquitous, cheap, and very popular. However, unlike Berni, the food is quite tasty. It isn’t going to give Chapter Two or Buenos Aires a run for their money, but if you’re knackered after work, and can’t face cooking, it’s perfect for a takeaway.
I know it’s a big evil chain etc etc, and I should probably be endorsing Blackheath’s own Sun Bo, or one of the slightly nondescript Indian restaurants, but they don’t seem to get my custom as often.
Vegetarian tip of the day – they don’t do mushroom pizzas, but they have a special code-phrase that enables a mushroom pizza… “Cotto with no ham”. Last time I tried this, the waitress told me that it was a bit silly to order a ham pizza with no ham, and it would be cheaper to make it from a margherita with extra toppings… Then she checked it, and agreed that the Cotto sans cotto was the cheaper option. The asparagus risotto is nice too.
From their site:
Opening hours: Monday to Saturday 12noon till 11pm. Sunday 12noon till 10.30pm.
Telephone: 020 8318 6644
Google Map here.