I've taken to working from home more regularly lately and by working from home, I actually mean a local cafe otherwise I run this risk of staying in my pjs all day and only eating rolos. Of course Finks is an obvious option given that it's so close but, by lunch, it's time to stretch the legs around Clissold Park and look for afternoon pastures.
This is where Feest Cafe comes into play and, if you're not careful, you're liable to missing it entirely as you walk up Green Lanes towards Newington Green. A bike shop meets working space meets greenhouse style cafe (obviously, this is almost East London after all), Feest is the cafe part run by the lovely Lottie from West London, a sunny and friendly lady with large green eyes.
As I take a few pictures, she pulls me into what ends up being a long and bright chat about life running a cafe, what makes Feest different to the others, and just how much she values her staff and how much that infuses into the service they offer (unlike another nearby cafe towards the green that still has terrible service despite changing hands, I tell her). This is quite rare to find in 'cool' coffee shops in the city.
All food at Feest, where possible, is grown in her back garden, and that includes the honey used that she cultivates from her own hives. As we talk, she softly fingers the flower pot in front of her and tells me how each table has a pot of pansies to add to your lunch. They're grown by young people with learning difficulties in South London.
There's old furniture from rundown pubs, leafy plants everywhere you turn, and a calm atmosphere that means being able to get some serious work done when visiting.
Despite being super London in its approach, it feels more like Kent - warmer, more personable and totally unique.
The food is pretty fabulous, too. Good portion sizes, colourful, fresh and prepared with a lot of love from beginning to end.
If you're looking for a cafe beyond the norm, Feest is open Monday to Friday 10 - 5pm, and Sundays. On Saturdays, it's reserved for events.
Do say hello if you find me sprawled out across the table with my laptop, or talking loudly on the phone about tea. If not, tell Lottie I sent you and be sure to order a fresh juice and pop a pansy on top.