For most of my time in London I lived in an area called Maida Vale, also known as Little Venice, that sits at the confluence of Regent's Canal and the Grand Union Canal, just behind Paddington Station. The London canals are part of an elaborate network of waterways built in the 18th century for transport of commercial goods. The canals snake all over London, and beyond, and new, imaginative businesses have -- dare i say -- popped up along parts of this charming yet practical web of channels from an earlier time. It's a nice kind of rebirth. More on that in another post.
If you walk or bicycle westward from my flat a couple of miles along the Grand Union, you come Portobello Dock, where Dock Kitchen is located. Of course, there are no signs, just a gate and door bell, but you can see it from where you stand on Kensal Road, on the edge of north London. It's in a very modern building with a glass façade, but it's unassuming despite its drama. It's designed by the well known architect and designer, Tom Dixon, who shares the compound with Dock Kitchen. This is the restaurant at night:
After that satisfying meal, we took the no.18 bus via Harrow Road back to our flat in Maida Vale. No one on that bus speaks english. It's humbling, and heartening. The English are living on history.
Stevie just finished a refurbish end of August, and we tried to do a pop-up at Dock, but the refurb took longer than expected, ran into September, and in the end the timing was off; he had to finish installing his tandoor and I had to return to the US. But I am happy to have met Stevie and expect he will continue to shake up the London scene in his personal, perfect quiet way. Congratulations Stevie!