It’s approaching mid March yet London feels like it’s going to be in Winter FOREVER. There is only one truly satisfactory and appropriate meal for such temperatures in the city: pie and mash. Here are some places where you should stuff your gob full of stodge.
London’s Best Pies
Goddards at Greenwich
Best for: good ambiance in a pretty corner of London.
I always have the classic minced meat pie at Goddards, with mash and parsley liquor. The pastry is flaky, golden and crisp, the meat is, well, meaty, and the two scoops of mash are full and seasoned well. The parsley sauce is great, considering I despise parsley. My eating partners have sampled chicken pie and beef – a good selection here – along with gravy, which were met with equal pleasure to my typical order.
Eel & Pie House, Leytonstone
Best for: humble yet charming bog standard fare.
This is my local pierie (this is now a word). I’d say not as good as Greenwich in terms of pastry, but the setting transports me back to some sort of 1950s working class idyll. Heaps of mash and sauce too, all for like, 3 pence. Okay, about 3 quid. Bargain.
L. Manze, Walthamstow
Best for: a bit of history.
L. Manze is a grade II listed building, beautiful and distinctive inside and out. The business started in 1929, so it’s safe to say they know their stuff about pie and mash. Oh, and this place is proper authentic like with its jellied eels if you’re partial to that sort of thing, or fancy tasting a new thing of yore.
The Golden Pie, Lavender Hill
Best for: somewhere not in or near East London.
This delightful little place in Southwest London also does the classic eels, and pie, mash and liquor on the cheap. What’s more is this place does perfect Brit-pud spotted dick and custard. Go to The Golden Pie if you are really hungry and not on a diet.
Best for: a modern take on pie.
This place is good for a pie on the go; it has a couple of cafes in London, and also caters for quite a few pubs. A little more expensive than the old school joints at about five quid per pie, also not with the olde charm, however, their stints at festivals and Boxpark in Shoreditch are testament to the relevance of a non-standard pie.
There are chilli con carne and saag paneer flavours, and Pieminister has great options for veggies.
Sea Fish, Highbury
Best for: pie-ing outside of the box.
This fish pie is buttery, soft, with equally creamy mash. It’s a dream. It’s just really really good. And only a tenner in a fairly poshy, cool place on Upper Street, the décor reminds me of Brighton somehow. As it’s part restaurant, part Fish and Chip takeaway, you can also leave with a hot, firm saveloy, which is excellent news.
The classic pie and mash with liquor is a filling, hearty dish that will only require a few pretty pounds. No matter if your boiler is on the blink or not, this is a tasty alternative to keeping warm in this weather, weather which always seems extra harsh and unexpected despite happening once a year…
Go pie your heart out.