One of the more interesting aspects of London is that there are so many good pubs, it can be difficult to experience them all. When we’re visiting London, we’re generally rather spoiled, as my brother and sister-in-law live almost next to the very excellent Cask Pub and Kitchen (which I haven’t reviewed here, since I’ve only ever had bar snacks for food there). The good part of this is that a quality pub with a very good selection of beer is almost always at hand. The down side of this is that I tend to ignore a lot of other good pubs, even ones that are just down the street. One case in point is The Queen’s Arms, which is just down the street from the flat, but until this trip I had only been in there once, and that for a quick pint. Our trip to London, however, was also coincident with my friends Rick and Sarah’s trip to London/Wales/Ireland, and they in particular enjoy getting together with friends from Metafilter (I’m semi-active there as well) for spontaneous meetups. So it was decided that their visit to London was the perfect excuse for a meetup on December 27th. Alas, much of London is shut down around the festive season, with publicans in particular using it as a good opportunity to take a well-earned break from their normal routine. So many of the pubs around Pimlico, including my well-loved Cask, were closed on the 27th. But Queen’s Arms was open, so the meetup was scheduled there instead. I’m rather glad it was, since this finally represented a good opportunity to check out the Queen’s Arms.
I spent a fair fraction of this holiday season in London visiting with friends and relatives. And, more importantly, getting a good fix of British food. Yeah, I can hear the snickering now, and the jokes about “bangers and mash” and “spotted dick.” But, in all seriousness, London is one of the better towns I’ve been to for good eating, with some seriously good Indian food, some good German food, Cornish pasties, and all sorts of delectably good food. But, before talking about those, I’ll concede that the good old fashioned “fry up” is still a cornerstone of the British culinary experience. And there is no better place to get a good fry-up than one of several “Caffs” around the greater London area. One of the best examples is the Regency Cafe, at the corner of Page Street and Regency Street SW1 in Pimlico in Southwest London. Really, go look, it’s even on the Greasy SpoonWikipedia page, and a quick Google shows that there are several other bloggers that agree with this. And, luckily, it was only a five minute walk from where I was staying.