L’Oasis. An Oasis in the East End.

DSC_0104On a recent trip through the East End I passed the green tiled entrance of a  pub that had caught my eye before: a slightly grubby entrance with big, golden letters over the door announcing to the world that behind the the slighty grubby and not particular welcoming face of the building there lurks a place where people can rest, spelled in French.  Inspired by the positive comments in the Michelin Guide for “Eating Out in Pubs “ I ventured in, not particularly suspecting anything exciting. I couldn’t have been more wrong: inside you’ll find a roomy, tastefully furnished pub with wooden tables, a long bar, pleasant music at pleasant level, friendly, local punters AND NO, I repeat, NO TV!! Praise his noodly appendage and vulcanoes!

DSC_0106But it gets better: their catchy slogan ‘real chefs, real food’ is probably a dig at the recent revelations that rhere is a plethora of pre-cooked, off-site produced food out there, but on my second vist after only 3 days the menu had already changed, but the food was just as excellent as before. Even the best girlfriend ever was impressed and probably added the place as another reason to move to Stepney or Bow.  But it gets even better: they have a lovely collection of ‘Meantime‘ beers on tab and in bottles (including an amzing wheat AND a framboise) that promise to light up any rainy Saturday afternoon.

Top Marks.

Taking the Inter City Express in Germany

After living in Germany for a considerable amount of time and having to endure the natives, I continue to refute the slightest notion of ever living there again. I acknowledge that it’s a great place to live in, with excellent infrastructure, safe cities, amazing public transport (more about that later), and visiting for a weekend is always fun, but I am always happy when I am back in my little remote village, surrounded by the sea.

Nevertheless, I never cease to be amazed by Germany’s railways. Forget the Autobahn. If you want land speed, take an Intercity Express and enjoy sitting in comfortable surroundings, being propelled forward at 300 km an hour, enjoying the greatest of Germany’s contributions to contemporary society: a Weizen Beer.

You have to hand it to them: nobody does beer in trains as good as the Germans.