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Old Street Neighborhood Guide

Old Street is more than just one street - it's London's Silicon Roundabout. Tech companies & startups of all types call Old Street home. This youthful & vibrant population makes for a fun culture within the boundaries of the Old Street area, with great food options, super places to have a drink after work, and lots of greenery to relax in. Let us show you around; after all, this is where FlatClub is based!


Parks

St Luke’s Church & Gardens - A great place for some al fresco dining, you can spot the hard workers of the silicon roundabout lounging here for their afternoon lunch often. A nice functional bit of greenery to soak up the sun in the city.

Finsbury Square - A lovely and well maintained city garden, visitors can relax in the grass and smell the roses throughout the square. Jazz concerts occasionally play, and there is a long bit of bowling green if that’s something you’re interested in!

King Square Gardens - A more family oriented park, the younger members of your traveling band will find lots of fun things to do here. A family park in London will include a sandpit, a children’s roundabout, water fun for the summer, and plenty of slides & swings. Great place to let the kids wear down their energy in the late afternoon!

Shoreditch Park - A relaxing space a little north of Old Street that has been awarded the Green Flag award for outstanding green spaces in England. The park hosts a giant boulder for climbing, a beach volleyball court, various sports pitches, and even an ampitheatre! One of the bigger & more varied parks in the area, it comes highly recommended.

Hoxton Square - Thought to be one of the oldest garden squares in London, Hoxton Square is supported by lots of history, a soft bed of grass, and surrounding restaurants and bars. A great place to relax and eat outside, it’s not necessarily as busy as some of the other parks.

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Eating Out

On the Bab - Korean culture is becoming big in London and with good reason. Fun music, cool fashion, and delicious food! On the Bab is Old Street’s best Korean restaurant. With an attractive design & reasonable prices, it’s crowded at lunchtimes with nearby workers and visiting tourists. Have an interesting Korean-inspired cocktail if you’re coming for dinner. Don’t be afraid if you don’t like spice, as On the Bab has lots of options that won’t leave you sweating.

Whitecross Street Market - Like a little variety & sunshine in your diet? Head on down to Whitecross Street Market, where you can find food representing so many different countries you’ll feel like you’re on tour. Turkish pizza, Italian paninis, Mexican burritos, Spanish chorizo, and French-inspired confit duck brioche! Lots of vegetarian options as well, including a very delicious vegan ‘buddha bowl’. Friendly vendors & a big crowd make this a fun place to go for lunch - open from Wednesday to Friday. Get there early though, things do sell out!

Meatmission - Like cheeseburgers? You’ll love Meatmission. Some of the best burgers in London, you can choose from a variety of different toppings & sides. The FlatClub team has gone here to celebrate and we can personally vouch for the chili burgers, fried pickles & big platters of fries. You definitely won’t leave hungry! Vegetarians shouldn’t feel left out either, as there are a couple of options - don’t be mistaken though, this is a burger restaurant above all else so health shouldn’t be a concern.

L’anima - Italian food done in a classier manner than your usual high street eatery. Don’t expect all-you-can-eat spaghetti with red sauce, it’s high culture with delicate fish dishes paired with perfect wines. Bring a date here, or anyone you’re celebrating with and have a lovely time.

GRAB Thai Kitchen - This is a super popular spot for Old Street workers at lunch and with good reason. Nice sized portions at a great price, with a range of non-spicy to hot dishes. Standbys like green chicken curry & pad thai join up with less common meals like massaman curry & pad prik pork. Go around lunch time and you might even spot the FlatClub team chowing down!

Dishoom - A bit out of the way & more up to Shoreditch, Dishoom is still worth the less than 10 minute walk from Old Street Station! Absolutely famous in the area for their Bacon Naan Rolls, this is an old fashioned Bombay cafe in the heart of London. Even though their breakfasts are what gets talked about the most, they have an extensive & equally delicious lunch menu. If you fancy some Indian but are looking to try something a bit more esoteric than your classic curry - this is your place.

Tramshed - Tramshed is a restaurant from celebrity chef & restaurantuer Mark Hix. Specializing in chicken & steak, it runs a bit pricy but is known for high quality cuts of beef & premium grade chicken. The starters are always seasonal & unique, with tasty versions of standard English puddings such as treacle tarts & fondue to end things.

Keu Banh Mi Deli - Vietnamese baguettes are easy to come by on this side of town, which is good news for fans of spicy meats & filling lunches. The best in our humble opinion is Keu, on Old Street and just about 5 minutes from FlatClub HQ. The classic crispy pork belly sandwich is an easy win, but adventurous types can opt for a spicy mackerel or roast duck baguette. Try the Vietnamese style ‘kopi’ as well, couldn’t get more authentic unless you were in Vietnam!

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Pubs

The Old Fountain - A classic & traditional English pub mere steps from Old Street tube station, the Old Fountain can’t be missed. Scotch eggs, roast dinners and steak are the sorts of fare you can find here, in addition to more esoteric and European-influenced meals. Lots of ale & lager varieties, including some interesting (and local!) craft options. Brewdog is a popular craft brewer and you can grab a bottle of their Dead Pony Club and take a seat after work.

The Three Crowns - Truly a gastropub, the Three Crowns has an ever-changing seasonal menu that reflects the best produce that the Britain has on offer, and an extensive wine selection. You can expect contemporary English cuisine such as spatchcock quail, lemon sole, and desserts like chocolate & hazelnut brownies.

Artillery Arms - Sunday roasts, award winning ales, and an old-fashioned pub feel make this place a hit with locals & visitors alike. The food is good, and the atmosphere of the pub is traditional without being out of date. Enjoy a lovely view of Bonhill Row as well on a sunny day!

The Princess of Shoreditch - Big portions & great food are some of the takeaways from The Princess of Shoreditch. The tables are nicely splayed out so the chatter from other patrons doesn’t necessarily invade your conversation. Lots of different ales on tap and some variety of food & cocktails makes this a fun place to go with a group of friends.

The Angel - Conveniently located with four plasma screen TVs showing sports, this is a good place to pop in for a couple drinks & sandwich after work. Enjoy some nice outdoor seating if you’d like to feel a cool breeze and watch the rest of Old Street go by.

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Coffee Shops

Ozone - A matter of seconds away from Old Street tube, depending on what exit you’ve taken, Ozone is a big, industrial-cool coffee shop hailing originally from New Zealand. Cold press, traditional espresso drinks, and great non-coffee options like chai lattes & milkshakes. Tasty eggy breakfasts, too! Great place to hang out and have a caffeine hit with friends, family & colleagues.

Shoreditch Grind - A bit of a misnomer, if you ask us, as Shoreditch Grind is literally right outside of Old Street tube station. Shoreditch is a little further ahead, guys! A very trendy spot with big open windows to people watch, you can enjoy classic espresso drinks in the morning and espresso martinis in the evening. Some quick lunches like grain salads are available as well.

Timberyard - Great coffee, a wide tea selection, and more pastries than you can shake a stick at, Timberyards’ got it all - and a lot of power outlets.

Ziferblat - An interesting experiment if nothing else, Ziferblat is a coffee shop where you pay for the time you’ve spent there - but your coffee is free. There are also some complimentary snacks, but from what we’ve heard don’t expect the finest pastries - they are, after all, free. Definitely an experience, and a good option of you need to get lots of work done, you’re low on options for co-working spaces in the City, and you’re craving an Americano.

Fix - On Whitecross Street (same place as the market!) you can get yourself a delicious latte, or an interesting, tasty, and indie variation on the icy, blended drinks a certain chain coffee shop made infamous. Tons of power outlets and wi-fi usage, and a nice bakery selection & a variety of non-coffee drinks rounds off a cool cafe indeed.

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Shopping

GoodHood & GoodHood Lifestore - A great pair of destination shops for fans of European & Japanese functional design and clothing labels such as P.A.M., WTAPs, and Norse Projects. A well curated selection in a very functional layout, the two shops are great for a browse on a quiet afternoon & a very short walk away from one another.

PaintWorks - Taking on an interesting art project? You’d fit right in at this shop! Selling all sorts of goods, from paper to paint to easels, Paintworks has everything you need to express yourself.

Argos - There is a giant Argos on Old Street, right outside of the tube exit. Argos is a shop with a cool concept - you either order online & collect your item at the shop, or you browse through their catalog in the store, key in your purchase, and wait to pick it up. Either way, it’s better to come in with an idea of what you need rather than browse - as there is nothing to browse! All of the products are kept in the back of the store like a warehouse. Home goods, appliances, and electronics are all frequent purchases at Argos across the country.

Lifestyle Bazaar - Lots of interesting design goods & things to make your home life easier are curated in this shop! From cool Pantone mugs to bold English oak, made-in-Brighton dining tables, there’s something fitting every budget and need in a home here. Nice place for a fun gift, too!

Camden Lock Books - This cool little independent bookshop is inside the Old Street underground station, which is a very convenient location - especially if you’re about to undertake a long tube journey and you’ve forgotten to bring a book! Specializing in hard to find and out of print books, you can find a lot of hidden treasures here. Give yourself a good half hour to browse and find a book to get lost in!

Lomography Shop - Located in the Spitalfields area just about 5 or 10 minutes away from Old Street tube station, this is a fun shop to have a browse around if you are a long-time Lomography aficionado, or just curious about photography as an art! Workshops & classes are put on here frequently, and in addition to purchasing new cameras, books, and accessories you may also get your film developed here.

Spitalfields Market Stalls - Also in the Spitalfields area is the famous Spitalfields Market - for which it is named. You can pick up a bargain here if you’re willing to hunt & haggle a bit. Unique accessories & clothing for stylish young women are easy to come across here, but there is also a bit of art & homewares to be found for everyone. On busy days, there can be upwards of 100 traders at a time!

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Nightlife

Nightjar - A very intriguing and mysterious cocktail bar, Nightjar has dozens of varieties of unique cocktails. They’ve got four themed menus based on time periods in the history of mixed drinks: pre-prohibition, prohibition, post-war, and ‘Nightjar signatures’, all modern creations. The atmosphere is low-key and the ambiance is classy & mature, a good place to go on a date or with a group who is into cocktails and conversation. Reservations are suggested.

Happiness Forgets - Happiness Forgets is similar in style to Nightjar, in that it’s classy, you take a seat, and you’re served your drinks - but the drinks themselves tend down a more classic route than Nightjar. Many different gins, bourbons, and other spirits mingle there. A bit of a connoisseur's cocktail joint. Bookings often needed - especially at weekends.

The Book Club - A fun and trendy bar that also serves quite a variety of food - including breakfast! If you’d like to be able to turn up & have a high energy drink with a group of friends The Book Club is a great choice. It’s incredibly popular and often crowded after work, so going in the off hours might be the best idea.

Callooh Callay - A whimsical place, as you might guess from the name, Callooh Callay is very popular with locals & visitors alike. It skirts the line between funky & cosmopolitan, and has curious touches throughout the bar. Hidden extra bars in the closet, restroom through the wardrobe - and more strange & exciting things abound. Lots of fun had with the tasty drinks, as well!

Casita - Hard to find but well worth it, this is a little bar with a focus on tequila. Their homemade chaser is addictive, so we hear, and made of mint, lime, coriander and pineapple. Beats salt, huh? It’s a small venue that is often packed - good reasons why, so turn up and make some new friends! Since it’s a bit off the beaten path of Old Street & City Road, everyone there is there because they’ve heard good things.

Queen of Hoxton - Rooftop cocktails, need we say more? Okay, we’ll say more. Queen of Hoxton has a rooftop garden with a barbecue on this summer serving up delicious classic grub like burgers, halloumi skewers, and coleslaw. Fun cocktails also served up, like pineapple-aid spiked with your choice of alcohol, or mojito slushies!

Worship Street Whistling Shop - This classy bar & cocktail lounge is a great stop - just a bit out of the way of the crowds, but always busy and bustling. There’s a strong focus on gin and classic spirits & mixes - fans of Mad Men will find themselves quite at home with the selection & atmosphere here. Classy & dimly lit, it’s a great place for professionals with a sense of the past.

some images courtesy of Wikimedia Commons

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