You might have known this spot previously as The Plough, but also maybe not, since it’s literally in the middle of nowhere East London. It’s a cool outdoor cafe and bar with a big terrace overlooking the River Lea, near Hackney Wick, and the obscure waterside location feels miles away from everything. Sure, you can see the Olympic Stadium behind the trees and sure, the river used to glow a weird radioactive green at night, but they’ve cleaned it up to the point that it’s actually a nice place to hang out with a few drinks with mates on a sunny afternoon. There are burgers and tacos if you get hungry, craft beers, and an air hockey table because you’re human and you like ripping into your mates. Be sure to check that there aren’t any football matches on the day if you don’t fancy being caught in a crowd of West Ham fans.
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The Laughing Heart
Looking for a late night hang close to Bethnal Green and Hackney? Trendy wine bar The Laughing Heart on Hackney Road has you covered.
The Gun is an old boozer in Hackney that's been spruced up and now does a great tarted up roast.
Four Quarters East
Old-school arcade games and drinks by the river are a perfect match, and you can get all of them at Four Quarters East in Hackney Wick.
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Shake Shack Victoria Street
The double shackburger from burger joint Shake Shack is the perfect fast food burger. The Victoria restaurant’s ideal for a grab and go.
Everyone needs an easy any time restaurant, and on Great Eastern Street, the Hoxton Grill does nicely.. Hit it for brunch or American comfort food.
Chick ‘N’ Sours
The newer Covent Garden location of fried chicken specialists Chick ‘n’ Sours comes complete with a cool basement and plenty of space.
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