It’s impossible to breeze past Persepolis without at least a second glance. The canary-yellow facade frames large windows that peek into a topsy-turvy world decorated with Middle Eastern string instruments; cans of food adorned in Arabic; hookahs; spices and other miscellanea. This cafe-cum-deli is like a psychedelic shouk, an Peckham OG that’s long been serving the community with hard-to-find ingredients and veg-based Persian cooking. Opened in 1999 by Sally Butcher - whose wild cloud of red hair is instantly recognisable to any Peckhamite - Persepolis evolved from a shop to a DIY restaurant. Bring your own booze and hunker down for a vegetarian feast, letting Sally feed you course upon course of Middle Eastern delights - all changed daily based on Sally’s whim. Caution: loose trousers are a must.
You might also be interested in...
This adorable little Italian delicatessen is a small piece of peace and quiet amongst the hustle and bustle of London Bridge. On offer here are continental breakfasts, melt-in-your-mouth paninis, salads, cured meats and big sharing platters. It's all authentic Italian, including the homemade pasta sauces and those creamy, sexy, come-to-me ice creams, that'll have booking your holiday to Italy in no time at all.
*Closed April 2017 Bringing the bumping vibes of Sao Paulo to London, this buzzing little coffee shop is nestled bang in the middle of Leather Lane Market. This relaxed little corner of the capital is a hub for creatives looking to get their head down and enjoy a speciality caffeine fix. With a warm, homely feel, tattooed baristas and honest food this place is the definition of inviting.
Cozy, no-frills, affordable, quality coffee and food is pretty much all you can ask for from a neighbourhood joint, and Coffee Corner delivers on all fronts. The cafe is pretty tiny, but they've got a nice selection of crepes, sandwiches, salads, and daily lunch specials which can be eaten in or grabbed to go. The best part though is probably that it's open at the crack of dawn, ready to fuel all you early-risers with your caffeinated lifeblood before work (the coffee won't disappoint, and there's a nice variety of fresh juices and loose-leaf teas for all you non-coffee drinkers).
Imagine if Wes Anderson and Marie Antoinette had a love child, and that love child had a popular lifestyle blog in Palm Springs and was Instagram famous. That's the general vibe at Palm Vault, Hackney's (and we'd be willing to bet the world's) most aesthetically pleasing cafe. With low hanging plants suspended from the ceiling, exposed brick, and a pastel colour scheme that puts Ladurée to shame, the atmosphere here will have you seeing la vie en rose. Oh, and the food is pretty great too, concentrating on locally-sourced plant based dishes that have inspired songs in the hearts of the Hackney vegan community. A must-try (for the 'gram as much as for the taste) is their fuchsia-hued velvet latte, which is made from beetroot and steamed milk (your choice from an extensive list of vegan substitutes). We also loved the avocado chocolate cake, and will never stop being mesmerised by the colour-changing "Magick Tea" which is nothing short of sorcery.