Why you should visit… Stoke Newington Church Street
A little bit of ‘old Hackney’ is still alive and well along Stoke Newington Church Street. The word ‘trendy’, now often associated with it, doesn’t really do it justice. Snaking all the way from Stoke Newington High Street down past Clissold Park to Green Lanes, Stoke Newington Church Street is a gem of a winding road.
Quite apart from its high density of independent, non-chain shops, Stoke Newington Church Street is gifted with a range of unpretentious watering holes and cafes. It’s a destination street, a bit like East London’s Columbia Road, where you can pitch up in the morning and easily spend your entire day on that street alone, discovering new shops, popping into a café to partake of a restorative coffee, grabbing a bite to eat for lunch before more window shopping and an early evening spent sampling the best local ales at the pub on the corner.
There’s a community-minded spirit to Stoke Newington Church Street. It’s almost tangible, and you get the impression that locals really care about the people and their local independent businesses. This corner of Stoke Newington retains a certain charm, and doesn’t seem to have been gentrified to the same extent as other parts of Hackney.
So what do we recommend on Stoke Newington Church Street? There are numerous places to go, but here’s a selection to choose from:
The Kauri Tree Café
This place is the very definition of your friendly neighbourhood café. The staff are always easy going, helpful, and quick to smile. The coffee is spot on, and the homemade bread, cakes and sandwiches always a hearty treat.
Fancy a barbecue? This is the place to come for quality meat that won’t shrink to half its size when cooked – a local, independent butchers offering free-range meats sourced from farms in the UK. The butchers here are not averse to giving a little advice on how best to cook this and that if you ask. They also run a series of courses and events in which delegates can learn about animal husbandry, how to shop for good meat, and how to prepare different types and cuts of meat for cooking.
A guesthouse as well as a pub, this is a great place to stay if you’re visiting the Stoke Newington area. The bedrooms are comfortable, the bathrooms modern, the standard of service is high, and the pub downstairs always delivers, both in terms of food and drink. You can’t go wrong with The Rose & Crown, whether you’re staying in the guesthouse for the weekend or simply popping in for a pint and a packet of crisps.
Feeling sociable? Feeling lively? In the mood for live music? Then head on down to Ryan’s N16. Live music plays all weekend long, but there’s food and drink available too. The ‘Stokey Burger’ and the spare ribs come highly recommended, and there’s a friendly vibe at this venue.
Evergreen & Outrageous
This specialist florist is a great addition to Stoke Newington Church Street. The shop itself is bursting at the seams with flowers, shrubs and foliage. The collective fragrance of hundreds of flowers hits you the moment you walk in the door, and then it’s a pleasant task to choose what you want from the colourful and diverse range of stems on offer. Step inside, and expect to exit with a beautifully crafted bouquet.
This Green Flag park skirts Stoke Newington Church Street. First opened in 1889, it is much-loved by the local community. There are many facilities, including sporting facilities, tennis courts, lakes, a café, and Clissold House, a Grade II listed building. There’s much to see and do, and it’s the perfect place for a weekend excursion, a walk, picnic, or cycle ride.