Upon my last trip to London – a place I lived, attended school, and roamed for an entire year, without one visit stateside – I was stumped. I knew of my favorite neighborhoods, old man pubs(which ARE the best kind), restaurants, clubs, bakeries, shops… I could go on but you get the point. I knew where it all was. Especially in relation to the East End and anything on the South Bank, near Borough, my practically religious stomping ground for food and adventure. I was, though, baffled. Taken aback. Surprised. There was an old brewery where I used to roam, near Spitalfields? How did I miss this? Was it still functioning? Come on history buff, show yourself!
Well… there was one (thank you for reminding me to dig deeper Rona!) and boy, was I mistaken. Amongst the glorious shops, enclaves, beigel bakeries, Vintage closets, bric-a-brac centers, Indian eateries, Banksy pieces, and fashion industry gurus, there was a brewery. Hell, the brewery housed them all! The Old Truman Brewery, that is. These days it also houses another place that is now very fond to my heart. Story Deli. No… it is not just a Deli.
Story Deli, which I wish I had frequented more, but on my lowly student budget was not manageable until I started to come around as a visitor, is so much more than a typical deli. It’s not really a deli at all, but a pizzeria, with some of the best thin crust pies, baked goods, and other tasty treats around! We went for the pizza, but we got a touch of history, tasty drink, and simple but perfect atmosphere in the mix. Story Deli is housed, as I mentioned, within the Old Truman Brewery, and boast floor to ceiling windows, old wooden floors, tables, and furniture, and various vintage intricacies for your viewing pleasure, and if you so fancy, purchasing pleasure. We, however, had our eyes on the summer veg and prosciutto pie, and it more than met its expectations.
As we sat on our sustainable cardboard bench chairs(that house much of the cutlery and tableware for the restaurant, talk about smart!), watching the people go by, enjoying a glass of well-rounded vino, we saw pie and entrée after pie and entrée come along to its hungry audience. Then, ours arrived. What could have been a cheese laden catastrophe, was a masterful tasty delicate dish, with fresh zucchini, peas, fava beans, asparagus, and lightly toasted prosciutto strewn about it’s perfectly blistered, wood-fired crust. Add to that fresh ground pepper, pine nuts, parmesan, and a few light dollops of mascarpone, and you have yourself one great Saturday, seasonal meal. The fact that Story has been doing sustainable, local, and organic for years, and really was the first on its path to do so, is an extra bonus that makes eating, and lingering here such a delight. I cannot wait to revisit you Story. You give my hometown pies, Chicago, a run for its money.