Written by Joanna, Author of The World in My Pocket
Tobacco Dock sits between Shadwell and Wapping overground stations and has plenty of great foodie spots around. I recently wandered around the area searching for the best bites, all within a maximum 10-minute walk from BorderlessLive. I ventured into a variety of restaurants and cafes, for every taste, budget and dietary requirement, to find the best places to eat at. Allow me to share my experience with you.
Here is my shortlist of some of the best bites in East London:
38 Wapping High St, Wapping, London E1W 3PA
Located just outside Wapping overground station, Urban Baristas is a modern coffee shop selling artisan coffee, gourmet sandwiches and fruit porridge bowls. The design of the coffee shop is inspired by the Nordic architecture, with space for digital nomads to work.
The menu includes hot and cold sandwiches using some pleasantly surprising ingredients. My recommendations are the organic sourdough toastie topped with artichoke, avocado, olive oil, basil and pine nuts (£5.50), and the ham and cheese croissant with Parma ham, cheddar cheese and rocket (£4.20). The bacon and egg brioche (£5.75) looked delicious as well!
Urban Baristas has a very interesting selection of lattes: turmeric, matcha, chai and red velvet, selling for £2.90 each.
75 Garnet St, Wapping, London E1W 3QS
Gastronomica was actually my last foodie stop whilst searching for the best places to eat close to Tobacco Dock and oh, how glad I was to have discovered it. This delightful little place run and owned by an Italian team really made me feel as if I was in Italy. It’s a must for gourmet Italian food lovers.
All ingredients are imported directly from Italy, including the tasty vegetables and fruits. I found myself on the edge of drooling whilst looking at the big piece of Porchetta staring back at me from the deli counter. Not to mention the burrata!
At Gastronomica you can either choose your meal from the menu or create your own panini with the fresh selection of charcuterie and cheese. Gastronomica has a special collection of wines as well, including the northern Italian Barolo, which is not that easy to find.
The menu selection is not extensive, but every dish is cooked from scratch just behind the deli counter. There are also bruschetta, pasta, salads and sharing boards available. I recommend the tomato and basil bruschetta (£4) and the tomato cream with mozzarella di bufalla (on the menu they have aubergine cream, but they didn’t have aubergines the day I visited - £5.5). For dessert, it would be a sin not to order the Tuscan speciality cantucci biscuits with Passito wine (£8).
All dishes were outstanding, with so much flavour in every bite. The portions are large as well.
Cinnamon Coffee Shop
Cinnamon Coffee Shop is a small café catering for vegetarians and vegans but also for people with food intolerances. Many products in their menu are gluten free and they won’t charge you extra for lactose free milk in your coffee.
The coffee shop is very small but has cosy seats both inside and outside. It’s the perfect place is you are searching for some peace and quiet.
I recommend the vegan wrap with hummus, avocado, tomatoes and vegan cheese (£4) and the veggie beetroot wrap with sweet potato falafel, guacamole, peppers and salad (£4). I preferred them to be toasted. The coffee shop makes great fresh fruit smoothies as well.
108 Wapping High St, Wapping, London E1W 2NE
Captain Kidd is not only a charming pub located on the Thames’s waterfront, but it also has a bit of history behind it. The pub, which occupies the inside of an old warehouse, was named after one of the most notorious pirates from the 17th century, William Kidd, who was hanged at the nearby Execution Dock.
Captain Kidd is a pub downstairs and has a restaurant upstairs. You can order food in the restaurant and have it in the beautiful garden, overlooking the river. The inside of the pub is designed to look like a ship’s hull, with panoramic windows and wooden beams all over.
The menu at Captain Kidd has pub classics such as fish and chips, pork pies, bangers and mash, and burgers. The lunch menu features sandwiches, soups and cod goujons.
My recommendation is the nachos sharing platter. The tortilla chips are covered in melted cheese and tomato salsa, being served with a generous portion of sour cream and guacamole. Delicious!
78-80 Wapping Ln, Wapping, London E1W 2RT
For a satisfying and reasonably priced meal, head over to Pizza Express. The building which hosts the restaurant is an old historic brewery which blends in perfectly with the architecture of Wapping. There is plenty of space inside, and the restaurant doesn’t seem to be very busy.
Even if Pizza Express is a restaurant chain, they do make very good food, and not just pizza. You can always try their Pollo Milanese, the classic lasagna, the pesto pasta or the Niçoise salad. Pizza Express also has a vegan menu and caters for people with dietary requirements.
I recommend the Fiorentina, a delicious vegetarian pizza with spinach, tomatoes, black olives, garlic oil and Gran Milano cheese, topped with an egg.
How about you? Which of these places will you choose to eat at whilst attending BorderlessLive?
Meet Joanna and other wonderful content creators at BorderlessLive, taking place at Tobacco Dock, London, 6 & 7 September 2019.