Best Pizza In London You Need To Try Once

By Dom Bewley

In the Guinness Book of Records, there's one food that holds the record as the world's favourite. On average, 98% of the planet voted for pizza. This is an absolute lie. But it should be true. Because pizza is the cheese that binds us. The sauce we walketh over. And the warm, doughy bread we layeth our heads on to rest. If you're like us, you'll only accept the best slice around. You deserve it, champ. And thankfully, this list of the best pizza in London will get you filled fast.

Homeslice

Covent Garden, Fitzrovia, Shoreditch, City, White City, Marylebone [caption id="attachment_3610" align="alignnone" width="1000"]

Courtesy of Homeslice[/caption] If you're looking for a big ol' slice of New York-style pizza, it doesn't get much better than Homeslice. Order by the slice or splash out on a huge 20" behemoth, and gorge on its utter bliss. Its location-wide menu includes stand-outs like mushroom, ricotta. pumpkin seed & chilli - trust us, it's better than it has any right to be. But each location also has its own signature pizzas, so visit every one, and get them all stamped on your little Homeslice card. You'll be rewarded with one free pizza of your choice. Seven pizzas for the price of six, and you'll love every single one of them. V

Yard Sale

Leytonstone, Clapton, Finsbury Park, Walthamstow

Yard Sale pride themselves on making "Simple, good pizza", and judging by their growing number of shops, it's clearly working for them. Primarily a takeaway, never-the-less you can still get a seat if you're passing by. They've got your usual fare of margeritas and pepperoni-topped pizzas, as well as the Cour Blimey, with courgettes and pancetta, and The Popeye, a white pizza with mushrooms, spinach, and pecorino cheese. They also offer gluten-free bases and vegan cheese for all their pizzas, so no matter your dietary needs, Yard Sale has you covered. GF, VG, V

Sweet Thursday

De Beauvoir Town

Sweet Thursday has been around for a few years now and somehow hasn't blown up like some of the others on this list. Certainly a local treasure, its unassuming facade opens out into a lovely authentic pizzeria with tonnes of tables. The pizza there is also immense, with a host of Italian classics alongside pizzas with pumpkin paste sauce. Diners will find a rather extensive wine menu too, as Sweet Thursday doubles as a wine bar. Pizza and wine. You'll feel fine. Trust us, this time. GF, VG, V

Voodoo Rays

Dalston, Shoreditch, Peckham Like Homeslice, Voodoo Rays does pizza NY-style. Big slices. Big taste. They're open late too, so they're perfect for a post-night soak up. Or even spend your evening there, as they have a host of craft beers from some of the biggest breweries like Beavertown and Brooklyn. Their pizza is sublime too, and with their American diner-style order system, you'll be encouraged to get up and order a few more plates throughout your stay. And if you're not into gluten, they also do GF offerings of all their pizzas on your own 10" base. GF, VG, V

Zia Lucia

Holloway Road

Another unassuming spot, this time nestled between Holloway Road tube and Highbury and Islington Station. Zia Lucia is an independent shop that prides itself on authentic Italian-style pizza. Expect authentic Italian flavours to boot, but what sets Zia Lucia apart is their doughs. Alongside the traditional base, they offer Wholemeal, Gluten-free, and best of all, Vegetable Charcoal. Not only does a pizza on a charcoal base look and taste fantastic, but it also helps your digestive system. If you're one to get gassy after wolfing down an entire pizza (it's OK we all do it sometimes), then order one of these and save your blushes. GF, VG, V

Sacro Cuore

Crouch End Another little number that may well go under the radar, Sacro Cuore, or sacred heart in Italian, does no-nonsense Italian pizza just right. Built on the staples of Naples pizza, do yourself a favour and order the Salsiccia & Friarella. Smoked mozzarella, Neapolitan sausage, Neapolitan wild broccoli, chilli flakes, and extra virgin olive oil. If you're not into white pizza, or you've never tried one, Sacro Cuore will change your life. They do delivery too, if you're lucky enough to live close by and simply hate going outside. VG, V

Firezza

Everywhere With the more American pizzas making up the lion share of the delivery chains across the country, Firezza saw an opportunity: give the people quality, authentic pizza inside their cozy little living rooms. And they've done remarkably well, given the insane amount of shops they now have all over London. There's bound to be one near you unless you're very unlucky. If you've never had one of Firezza's rectangled delights, what is wrong with you? Call yourself a pizza aficionado? For shame. They also have a few restaurants about, if you want to put on your best suit/dress/whatever you want, and dine in style. GF. VG

Pizza Pilgrims

Lots of places

Named after the pizza pilgrimage that the owners took through Italy's brightest pizzerias, you'll be grateful they were taking notes. With so many shops around town, you'll more than likely have already come across a Pizza Pilgrims. But for those in the dark, they do great authentic pizza at affordable prices. Paired with some insanely cheap cocktails - their frozen margarita is delightful - and you really can't go wrong here. Even their simplest pizzas, be it the Marinara or the Margherita, will set you back less than a tenner while tasting as good as anything else on the market. VG, V

Vicoli di Napoli Pizzeria

Stoke Newington If you've ever seen the Julia Roberts' film Eat, Pray, Love, then you may be well aware of L'antica Pizzeria da Michele. Widely touted as 'the greatest pizza on Earth', has spawned its own London lovechild right in the middle of Stoke Newington. If you want options, look somewhere else, because Vicoli di Napoli offers just three. Marinara, Margherita, and Double Mozarella Margherita. But once you taste this heavenly slice of life, you'll understand. Just be aware that due to the popularity of the pizza, in no small part thanks to Eat, Pray, Love, you may be queuing for some time to get a seat. But you're a connoisseur. So what's a little wait for perfection? VG, V

Three Johns

Angel While the Three Johns is primarily a pub (and very popular with the locals and workers in the area), it also has a fantastic pizza menu on offer. Their sourdough bases are sublime, and like many of the others in this list, it leans into the authentic. Whether you want meat or veg, cheese or none, there's bound to be a pizza for you. There's plenty of seating both inside and out, so why not get a pint or a glass of wine, and sit in the sun with some stringy mozzarella goodness? VG, V And those are our picks! Let us know what you think in the comments below. And if you're looking to burn off some of them cheesy calories, why not peruse our list of what's left to do in London this summer?

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Interview with: London Zoo

London Zoo is one of London’s most family friendly attractions. With daily animal shows and over 17,000 animals at the zoo (758 different species!) there is plenty to be entertained with from morning til noon. Nestled in the green Regents Park in central London, it’s a great day out for the kids. From the Tiger Territory to live feedings, you can plan your visit to a T. We wanted to find out more, so we decided to get some insiders info from Teague Stubbington, an experienced zoo keeper and die-hard animal lover, to tell us more about London’s animal sanctuary. How long have you been working at the zoo? I’ve been working at the zoo for 17 years as a zoo keeper, however, most zookeepers like myself start out as a volunteer first. It’s easy to lose track of time here; one of our keepers has been working here for 51 years! It must be one of those jobs where you get a high amount of satisfaction? Absolutely, it is definitely not a job we take for money, it is a job you do because you love it. On my way to work every day I am always thinking about my animals, thinking about the new things we can try and the work that I am going to do. I haven't had a day yet where I've not wanted to come to work. What is the greatest thing about working in London Zoo? There are so many things which are absolutely amazing about working at London Zoo and I get so much personal reward from working with animals; the amount that you get back from them is great. One of the other things that really makes a difference for me is how much of a contribution we make towards conservation. For example, thanks to zoos like us there are far more tigers that exist in the world now than there were, or than there ever would be without our help. What is the most important thing that visitors can take away from their visit of London Zoo? There is so much for visitors to learn and the key thing is that they become inspired themselves. By seeing the animals here and seeing the work we do there are so many things that people can choose to do at home and in their lives that will help animal conservation. What can people do to get involved and help animals? When it comes to helping penguins, for example, one thing we can do is make sure any fish that we buy to eat has been certified by the main stewardship council. Look for the LSE symbol on the packaging to ensure you’re eating fish from sustainable sources. What’s your favourite animal in London Zoo? I've worked with animals for a long, long time and I've got some favourites in the zoo. For me, every animal has its own personality and I’ve got to know them quite well and I feel a kinship with some, so to speak. One of our female gorillas I’ve known for nearly 20 years, so she’s definitely one of the animals that I have a close relationship with – and not surprisingly is one of my favourites. You must get visitors from all over the world? We do. A lot of our visitors are young families and we're seeing more and more international people, as well. Last year we had nearly 1,300,000 visitors to the zoo! We are a part of London and everybody who comes to London wants to see us, too. Visit London Zoo for free with The London Pass and save over £21 per adult and £16 per child. Find out more, here...
Vanessa Teo
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Vegtoberfest: The Vegan Oktoberfest

Vegtoberfest, the UK’s first 100% vegan Oktoberfest, recently made our list of the Oktoberfest events we were most excited about this year. So, after proclaiming that, in the form of this plant-based party, there was a new sausage in town, we thought it best to go and see and smell and taste for ourselves just how a vegan Oktoberfest went down. Here’s what we found out, including... What’s the food like at a vegan Oktoberfest? Is it still all about the beer? Is the entertainment also forward-thinking at Vegtoberfest? And More The Food and Drink Rudy's Dirty Vegan Diner The main food concession everyone wanted to hit up was run by Rudy’s Dirty Vegan Diner. It was a good choice from the organisers, bringing over one of Camden’s most popular vegan street food places, and one with a particular reputation for going big and dirty and celebrating indulgence. It’s in their name after all. And that’s what the event needed from its food, to celebrate the Bavarian obsession with all things big and meaty...even at a meat-free event. Rudy’s Dirty Vegan Diner were serving bockwurst, bratwurst, kartofellpuffer and their classic Dirty Burger. We had the bock and the brat, and they both came out with the wursts in satisfying disproportion to the brioche roll. You know the style, the sausage extending out from both sides like a whale in a human-size duvet. Before rectifying that mad equation by chomping down on meat-free meat, we headed to the condiment table to load up our dogs/paper plates with sauerkraut, crispy fried onions, American mustard and ketchup. It’s definitely possible to have eyes bigger than your belly/dog/paper plate when it comes to those salty, sugary crispy fried onions. So things got a little bit messy. The sauerkraut was pungent and powerful and fresh. Just as you want it to be. But it’s easy enough to stop at a spoon or two when it comes to something like that. Not so with the crispy fried onions. Not so at all. The bratwurst had a real smokiness to it, the bockwurst was herbier and more complex in its delicate spicing. Both were fantastically flavoured and superb at replicating the taste of the ‘real’ wursts they were stepping in for. But the best thing about both bock and brat were their textures: they had the classic ‘snap’ of the original sausages and were satisfyingly juicy. [caption id="attachment_5399" align="alignnone" width="1000"] vegtoberfest.co.uk[/caption] Fest Bar The food on offer at the main Fest bar was less essential and not so well thought out. They were serving vegan pizzas, pretzels and loaded fries topped with pizza toppings. It was all great, 100% vegan, 100% competent cooking, but Rudy’s Dirty Vegan Diner were the main event, and the only place really fully in the spirit of Oktoberfest. Which was a shame. To pay entry to a festival of food, drink and music, and have only one outsider trader, one standalone stall serving food...wasn’t enough. Something to improve on next year, we think. Drinkswise, you couldn’t go wrong with either of the main vegan German lagers they had on, Spaten and Lowenbrau. It’d be nice to have them served in two pint steins, though. With just a limited selection of Bavarian lagers and craft ales, it didn’t feel like a celebration of beer, and that aspect of the night kind of retreated into the background. Elsewhere on the bar, the mulled wine was well-spiced and warming, as was the mulled cider. We didn’t get the chance to try a vegan Baileys, but if you’re looking for a boozy dessert at Vegtoberfest, it would surely be worth a shot. The Entertainment The cutting edge in the evening’s entertainment was brought by female drag queen and Neo-Burlesque superstar Lolo Brow. As compere she held the evening together, as an act she tore the evening apart. She was a witty, inclusive, fun host for proceedings, getting the audience involved and hyped and ready. But she kind of stole the show with her own performances, which included fire eating and an innovative, funny strip show, with the audience in charge of when to skip the track on her iPod. Vegtoberfest are proud of their progressive ethos, and look to update the traditions of Oktoberfest without completely ignoring them. So, instead of a traditional Oompah band, they booked a drum and brass band who play brassed-up versions of modern tunes and pop and rock classics. They’ve got a great name too: Old Dirty Brasstards. They were engaging performers and played wall-to-wall crowd-pleasing stuff. Total Eclipse of the Heart and Uptown Funk and some Winehouse songs and Shake It Off and Oasis tunes and so much more, often heading straight off into the next track or nicking the chorus from another pop track and sticking it on, creating a real brassy top of the pops mixtape feel. Besuited and with confetti guns set to stun, they were the feel good, family-friendly soundtrack to the evening. Balancing out the irreverence and progressiveness of Lolo, they were a good match for one another. [caption id="attachment_5402" align="alignnone" width="1000"] olddirtybrasstards.co.uk[/caption] The Venue Fest in Camden is not the ideal place for Vegtoberfest. Oktoberfest tents are big and open from all sides, and Fest is small and has a lot of dead ends. So it was hard to get into the main room to see the entertainment. And Rudy’s Dirty Vegan Diner were stranded up the other end of the complex, with a single-file outdoor corridor separating the two. Ideally, Vegtoberfest would be held somewhere bigger, more open, where the different parts of the celebration can feel more connected. Still, it’s a great looking venue overlooking the market. The private rooms in the old stables are particularly attractive and atmospheric. The decor was all great, all done by Chou Rouge, the team behind Gala Festival and plenty of other parties. Mixing tradition and its antithesis, it set the scene for the evening. But it’s a shame they didn’t have a bigger canvas to work on. Vegtoberfest is back on October 19th 2019, with music from Brasstermind and Dee Riley hosting. [caption id="attachment_5400" align="alignnone" width="1000"] vegtoberfest.co.uk[/caption]
Matthew Pearson
Blog

London's Best Sporting Venues

Discover London's most famous stadiums and clubs In the run up to the World Cup 2014, Wimbledon and numerous other sporting events in the summer, we’re getting ourselves in the mood and in the mania every which way possible to celebrate another season. London, like any city, with its history and cultural and political standing, has a rich sporting pedigree from football and rugby, to cricket and tennis; and with Wembley, Twickenham, even Wimbledon and Lords, the capital has an unusually high number of top-quality stadia. So, sports nuts, this one’s for you: if you follow the nation's sporting heroes with a passion, these are a definite must-see... Twickenham Stadium Home of English rugby union, Twickenham is one of the most impressive stadiums in the world, holding the title of the second largest stadium in London (after Wembley) and the fifth largest in Europe, so you can imagine the sheer scale of it. The stadium, which is dedicated solely to rugby, was built at the start of the twentieth century, and hosted the 1991 Rugby World Cup Final (but don’t ask us about the result, you won’t get a very happy answer...) But there’s more to the stadium that just being a spectator. If you're visiting and there's not a game on while you're in London, you'll still find plenty at Twickenham to make a visit well worth it. First, there's the Museum of Rugby, which was opened in 1996 and documents the entire history of the popular sport, from its origins in England's public schools right through to the present day. It also houses the largest collection of rugby memorabilia to be found anywhere in the world. Another must-see event is definitely the Twickenham tours to give you backstage access to the stadium. You'll be able to explore this impressive building, ultimately ending up in the England team’s dressing room and you’ll be given a chance to relive your childhood dreams of running out of the player's tunnel and onto the pitch. The guides will be able to give you the lowdown on what the players do to prepare for the big games, as well as anecdotes from some of the biggest games to take place at the stadium. Wimbledon Tennis Club Even a fair-weather tennis fan will be able to tell you that Wimbledon is the most important event in the busy calendar on the ATP World Tour. It's the competition that every tennis player dreams of winning and epitomises the summer sport. Last year, our very own Andy Murray became the first British champion since Fred Perry 77 years ago. While most of us will never get to play on its sacred turf, we can still visit though! The Wimbledon Tennis Club offers a tour and museum containing historic memorabilia from the great tennis champs. Explore the grounds where you'll be able to see everything from the "Murray Mound" to the prestigious Court One, where the final show-down happens. Stamford Bridge Home to Chelsea FC, Stamford Bridge may not be the biggest stadium in the world, or even in London for that matter (with a capacity of just over 41,000), but it’s certainly one of the oldest, having opened in 1877. Chelsea have been playing their home games here for 110 years and today, it is where Jose Mourinho's men have set an impressive run with die-hard loyal fans. Take a tour around Chelsea FC’s stadium for a glimpse behind the scenes of some of the most nail-biting matches. You'll be able to see the dressing rooms, where shirts of football heroes hang from Frank Lampard, Petr Cech and Eden Hazard. Soak up the success of one of London’s most popular teams! A great day out for you and the kids, there’s a souvenir megastore too so you can leave with something to remember! With the London Pass you can experience all of London’s greatest venues for free! Whether you’re a rugby man, obsessed with tennis or a football fanatic – there’s something for everyone. Find out more about our stadium tours, here...
Vanessa Teo

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