Ahead of Dalston’s 5th annual music and arts multi-venue take-over Land of Kings, on Sunday May 5, festival Director Nick Griffiths told us his top five secret London spots…
Eastern Curve Garden
Community garden behind a door next to the Hackney Peace mural on Dalston lane. They’ve got a pizza oven and special events happen all year round but generally is a nice place to escape your concrete-dwelling existence once in a while.
Located in a kind of no-man’s land, down an alleyway between Dalston’s eastern-most edge and Hackney Downs, The Russet serve up serious breakfasts and proper coffee. Hard to find but all the better for it.
Servant Jazz Quarters
Bizarrely, one of three venues around Gillet Square with the word ‘Jazz’ in it’s name, SJQ is speakeasy-cum-live music spot good for new music and more alternative sounds (but not necessarily jazz). Alice the manager makes a mean Old Fashioned too.
Dalston Roof Park
A secret for about as long as the sun stays away, at least. Atop the Bootstrap building, the roof park gives as picturesque a view of the Hackney skyline as you’re likely to find. Look out for film screenings, talks and gigs when their Summer season kicks off next month
Where to hide from the masses if Dalston’s basement clubs aren’t doing it for you? Maybe Ruby’s, where they offer table service cocktails and (most of the time) somewhere to sit. Check for “Seasonal” specials but the Chilli Apple Martini gets my vote every time.