Posted in cinema, restaurant

Peckhamplex (and Levels)

Just like Holly, before the wee man arrived, going to the cinema was a pretty regular date night activity for me and the big man; both of us loving nothing more than sitting in a darkened room for a couple of hours not talking to each other! For us, the Peckhamplex has always been our cinema of choice so, when the wee man came along, I was delighted to hear that it does a baby cinema screening – every Thursday at 11.30 – too.

In case you’re not familiar with it, “the Plex” – as it’s known locally – is something of a local institution; a little frayed around the edges and lacking any sort of pretension, it’s kind of like the old man’s pub of cinemas – with a loyal customer-base to boot.

I’ve been three times in the past nine months; hobbling there – still bruised and cathetered from the birth – when the wee man was just three-weeks-old to see First Man (he should learn about the importance of Ryan Gosling from a young age, right?!) and more recently, to see Aladdin (meh) and Yesterday (cried A LOT, still blaming hormones).

The first thing to say about the Plex is the cost; at £4.99 a ticket it is way cheaper than any other cinema I have been to in London (maybe even the UK) and a reasonable price if, like me, you’re counting the pennies on mat-leave. Secondly, with multiple screens, you have more than one film each week to pick from so whether you fancy the latest blockbuster or something more niche – more often than not, they’ve got you covered. 

There is not a step in sight so you can roll on in and roll on out without any hassle. The staff are also helpful. Prams are usually parked in the cinema foyer but when we went with our then-newborn they allowed us to take the bassinet in with us so the wee man could continue to sleep undisturbed.

A darkened room filled with other mums and their babes makes feeding easy for any self-conscious mum (I don’t know about you but I felt very awkward and self-aware in the first few weeks of breast-feeding as opposed to now when I’ve been know to open the door to an Amazon delivery man with babe latched on).

True, you’re not going to get the luxury of a sofa that some “gastro” cinemas offer but at £4.99 a ticket, I’m not complaining!

Top tip? The Peckham Levels next door are currently offering a £5 lunch (Weds – Fri 12pm till 4pm) at some of their food stalls. We went for Other Side Fried’s Buffalo burger -described by the big man as “spicy, saucy and delicious”.

All-in-all, a great couple of hours out and all under a tenner. What’s not to love?

Posted in restaurant

Dishoom, King’s Cross

Ahhh, Dishoom. For a while it was seemingly everyone’s favourite London restaurant. Every catch-up with friends would include the question, “have you been to Dishoom yet? You really must”. So I was surprised when one of my pals said she had never been and insisted that we escape our South London enclave – kids in tow – to see what all the fuss was about (9 years ago). 

It’s a place I’ve enjoyed A LOT over the years, with fond memories of celebrating friend’s birthdays over too much Biryani and booze but it’s not somewhere I would necessarily think ‘child-friendly’ … until now. 

We went to the King’s Cross branch and when my friend arrived first with her two children she was greeted by friendly staff who immediately produced an etch-a-sketch to entertain her eldest (something, my friend pointed out, even cafe’s pertaining to be aimed at families don’t tend to do). 

When I arrived late, sweating and with the wee man grizzling in his sling, my friend and her brood looked – by comparison – the picture of contentment. A feat, I was assured, that was in no small part due to the attentiveness of the staff. We chose to seat ourselves in the pleasantly spacious ground-floor lounge but if you’re coming with a pram, other floors are accessible via a lift.

High-chairs were produced and breakfast ordered. Be warned, a kids menu is not on offer until 12pm; not an issue for the wee man who largely exists on a diet of boob and sweet-potato wedges, but might have been helpful for the three-year-old in our company. As it was, my friend ordered him the sweet Appam stack; pancakes covered in all the good stuff like syrup and cream (and berries) while she went for the Kejriwal; fried eggs on chilli cheese toast. I had the sausage naan. 

I’m not going to lie, at £6.50, it’s not the cheapest sausage sandwich I’ve ever had but I ate it like a frenzied animal and I still catch myself thinking about it from time to time (and not just because I’m writing this) – a marker of a pretty delicious sausage sandwich, I reckon – and my friend raved about her eggs and cheese on toast. 

The three-year-old was less impressed with his pancakes; either because he is the next Jay Rayner in Spider-Man high tops or because he’s going through some phase with food (I suspect the latter).  Valiantly, his mum and I hoovered it up without fuss and plenty of overblown “hmm, DE-LICI-OUS” in a vain attempt to get him to show some interest in it. He didn’t. But we were happy. 

In fact, the only (minor) downside is that the baby-changing facility is miles away on the bottom floor. Thankfully though, on this occasion it wasn’t needed. 

Dishoom, King’s Cross in an nutshell: 

Cost ⭐️⭐️⭐️

The sausage naan is worth every penny

Accessibility ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

I brought a sling but if you’re a pram person and don’t fancy sitting in the ground floor lounge there is lift access (ask staff) or you can leave your pram downstairs. 

Facilities ⭐️⭐️⭐️

Baby changing is a bit of a trek to get to on the bottom floor but they produced an etch-a-sketch for the three-year-old so all is forgiven! 

Feeding friendly ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

The lounge chairs on the ground floor are nice a comfortable. 

General vibe ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Yummy food, EXCELLENT and very helpful staff – I’m now going more often than before I had the wee man!