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Transpose the traditional Parisian bistro experience to a modern London setting and you’d pretty much recreate the after-hours deal here. By day, Anderson & Co is a popular neighbourhood café with tiny, tightly packed tables and friendly, homely service. Come the evening, though, the atmosphere is mellowed by low-lit bare bulbs and flickering candles, and a short menu of pan-European dishes is produced using modish ingredients: from spelt wheat to salted caramel. Standout starters include tender pieces of delicately deep-fried globe artichoke, while mains run from nicely cooked onglet with chunky, well-seasoned chips to succulent pan-fried black bream drenched in fragrant rosemary butter. Don’t miss the phenomenal desserts: Bakewell tart with crisp pastry and a rich, warm filling; banoffee pie served in a cute cup. The short, good-value drinks list offers decent food-friendly wines plus local lager – quality that’s coming to be expected on this restaurant-rich stretch of Peckham.
London can be a wonderful place to live. There’s always something going on: a show to see; a new restaurant to try; a concert to attend; or a museum to explore. But it can also be a frustrating, difficult and lonely place to live with packed public transport, expensive prices, and fellow-citizens who are too rushed and too tired to make amicable small talk. Usually I don’t really notice this final point much but when I travel abroad, especially to South Africa, I am reminded how much I like the easy familiarity and propensity for small talk that I experience there and miss in London. Sometimes after a hard day,...
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