When we were in London, we stayed in Shoreditch, which is in the East End. It is an inner-city district within the borough of Hackney, just north of the historic City of London. Specifically, we stayed at Landmark Apartments (30 Rivington St.), which is about one-and-a-half miles north of the Tower of London. We booked our stay through AARP. We were very pleased with our lodging. Its two main attributes being that it was close and cheap, about $600 for six nights. I was a little worried about staying there, because of the place’s 3 out of 5-star rating. People either loved it (5 stars) or hated (1 star). The main complaints seemed to revolve around either over bookings or the size of the rooms. We had no problems with the first complaint, in fact, we were able to check in early, which was a blessing. Our efficiency apartment was small, but also very well-organized and included a queen-sized bed, full kitchen and bath. It even had a combination washer-dryer all in one unit. I had never heard of such a thing.
In the six days that we were in London, we ate seven meals in Shoreditch, five breakfasts and two dinners. One of the dinners was at a place called the Diner, a British chain, which we discovered had some sort of Saint Louis connection. All of the tables had inlaid the exact same Formica pattern as can be found at the City Diner on South Grand. The menu also featured two Saint Louis references, the Arch burger, with Saint Louis style pulled pork and baby back ribs, done Saint Louis BBQ style. Taken all together, it was too much of a coincidence to not to be somehow connected.
Our favorite place for breakfast and the only place that we went back to (twice) was Ozone Coffee. They roast their own coffee. In fact, they make such a thing out of coffee that on our first go there, we were a little taken aback. Their baristas act more like a fine wine sommelier and our waitress’s look of disappointment, when we ordered just a pair of Americanos did not go unnoticed. On our second go, we got the hang of things and ordered dueling washed and natural versions of one of their signature beverages and got an approving nod too. Their benny was my favorite. I got mine with the pastrami spiced salmon, which along with the eggs came atop bubble ‘n’ squeak cakes, which were mainly potatoes.