Yesterday I finally sampled the pizza at the latest addition to Stoke Newington Church Street’s Italian Connection, Datte Foco. As someone else has said before me, Datte Foco, which calls itself a “pizza and love joint”, is not like other pizza restaurants out there, and this might be the reason it took me so long to go after they opened in December. The interior is a functional affair somewhere between take-away, caff and restaurant, and the menu and concept takes a bit of getting used to…
Datte Foco - A Pizza and Love Joint
Datte Foco serves pizza al taglio, sort of similar to Soho’s Maletti or Moorgate’s Mangiare… slices of pizza that are in this case prized by weight. The selection available also differs from what you get in most other pizza joints; you definitely won’t find pineapple here, thank you very much. The key here are original Roman creations with simple yet gorgeous toppings. It’s a great concept but it means that the first time you go you will need some time to figure out what your options are.
Long time friends and sometimes collaborators Charlotte Delaney and Alicia Graham are at it again, this time they are busy setting up a brand new community radio station in Stokey.
Based in the new Politi Arts studio, Reelrebelsradio.com will offer a unique mix of music, talk, documentaries and radio plays – sort of a like a funked up Radio 4. Unlike some other internet radio stations, Reel Rebels will be broadcasting 24/7 and will offer programmes on everything from erotica to religion.
Shake off the winter blues this weekend at Arcola’s Green Sundays. This month’s event focuses on ‘Well Being, Health & Happiness’. Discover what it would be like if the government pursued happiness as a national agenda, have a free massage, take part in fun and games or make your own facial products using ingredients from the larder.
The Audience at Green Sundays
As well as the usual live music and short films, you also have the chance to give your lungs a workout in a singing workshop, or if that isn’t your bag why not try the free laughing workshop – guaranteed to make you giggle.
A taste of lavish Romanian opulence has come to Stoke Newington. Or at least a photocopy of it has. Peles Empire, recent winners of the 2009 Deutsche Bank Award, are currently slapping up the wallpaper on Stoke Newington’s newest and most velvety gallery space at 55 Kynaston Road, N16.
Peles Empire is a joint project between Stadel School artists Katharina Stoever and Barbara Wolff.
“We like when there is an interaction between the work, sometimes it is work that you wouldn’t think would work in here that looks the best,” says Katharina Stoever, who runs the project together with Barbara Wolff.
Regulars at the Sovereign are in for a real treat on Saturday night as not only is it the pub’s Christmas party, the fabulous dance band Section Eleven will be playing their infectious mix of Latin grooves.
I have to confess, the first time I heard them play I had been dragged rather reluctantly, protesting loudly “I don’t like Latin”, but was soon converted. Section Eleven play an eclectic mix of Latin sounds including Afro-Cuban, Caribbean, Colombian and Brazilian rhythms. The band certainly lived up to its ‘dance’ tagline and in fact I didn’t sit down once during their set, swept along with the band’s big sound and irresistible beat.
So when I heard they would be playing at the Sovereign again I caught up with Venetia Bennion – who plays both Alto and Soprano Saxophone as well as providing some of the vocals – to find out a little more about the band.
Oops, time for a little update: Unfortunately we got our facts a bit upside down. The cancellation of the Christmas bash was down to a licensing issue. Please have a look at Greg’s comment below to get the real deal.
Although the ‘winter’ lights have been up for while and the shop-fronts are festooned with decorations, you can tell that Christmas is really just around the corner when the first real trees start to appear. But don’t fret if, unlike some of your smug Facebook friends, you haven’t finished (or even started) your Christmas shopping because everything you could possibly need can be found right here in Stokey.
From miniscule budgets to those with no limits, from obvious choices like a book token for the ‘impossible to buy for’ friend or scented candles and picture frames from Hamilton’s, to a truly unique one-off original Stokey has it all.
While not strictly Stokey the Hackney Empire is a local(ish) institution and their Christmas pantomimes are especially worth a visit.
Aladdin at the Hackney Empire
This year’s adventure is Aladdin and his magic lamp, transported from its usual Arabian setting to the Peking suburb of Ha-Ka-Ney. Clive Rowe (Duke from the Tracey Beaker series) stars as the Widow Twankey and is joined by an all-singing, all-dancing cast including flying genies, tap dancing pandas and a singing camel.
After several vague promises to get in touch (mine, I shamefully admit), I finally had the chance to sit down with Stokey’s answer to Elvis and our very own Man in Black, Charlie Wilson – lead singer of the Brick Lane Boogie Boys.
Hello Charlie, The Boogie Boys are practically a Stokey institution and must be one of the areas best known bands. Tell us a little about them.
We’ve done well over 100 gigs in Stoke Newington in the last 10 years. But we’re not just a Stokey band – we play all over. We’ve appeared on the BBC Radio London Sessions five times as part of the Robert Elm show, which has spread us all around London. We do a lot of festivals in the summer too, both specialist and the mainstream ones. In fact we’ve done most of them.
On Friday, 27 November at 6pm, Stokey Fashion Rocks! will return to Abney Hall for a night of charity gala glam in support of Breakthrough Breast Cancer. Already on its third outing, Stokey Fashion Rocks is a seasonal fashion show put on by our local independent boutiques and shops… this time Androulla Fashions, Hub, Red, Ribbons and Taylor, Rosa, Sunstone and Beaucatcher are taking part, and the lovely Isla Traquair will be there to help host the evening.
We are promised a return of our local firemen and other well known locals from pubs, shops, cafes and restaurants on the catwalk. This could be well interesting… who would you like to see? And in case you can’t make it, we hear that there will be a calendar on sale in mid December.
Tickets are £20 and apart from entry to this glorious event that includes a goodie bag (worth £30 alone), a meal (we know Atique Choudhury’s Yum Yum and Oishiii are involved) and a cocktail (apparently courtesy of The Three Crowns and soon to be reopened The Lion.) You don’t get that at the O2 Arena, do you?