Ping Pong and Pizza
Earls Court is serving up pizza by the slice and ping pong by the game. One of the latest crazes to rock New York City has bounced across the pond and landed squarely (or roundly) in our neighbourhood.
Table tennis, once a simple, nerdy side show for the ‘not-quite-sporty’ was transformed a few Olympics back by Asian speed demons in tiny shorts. Now, having long grown tired of being recognised as a genuine sport, ping pong is revived for the desperately hip. With bars and clubs popping up all over the shop proving that there is a clear market for ranked beer pong, it’s no wonder that a line forms around the block each Friday when Ping opens its doors.
But don’t just settle for the weekend, why not stop by for a Tournament Tuesday. Entry is free and there’s a £100 gift voucher for the lucky winner.
If you haven’t quite got your top spin perfected you can always get yourself a haircut at the eponymous Deano’s Barber Shop, located downstairs and cropping men’s barnetts from Monday-Wednesday 6-11pm.
If you’re like me and prefer a less pressured experience (the last time I played ping pong I hit myself in the face with my paddle) then just grab a stool, a beer and a pizza and take in the show.Ping 180-184 Earl’s Court Rd, Earls Court, SW5 9QG
020 7370 5358 Mon-Wed 6-11pm Thurs-Sat 6-2am Closed Sunday
Wimbledon at The Pembroke
Although you may not have noticed, summer fast approaches, I promise. And this means a plethora of excellent events and activities on offer here in Earls Court.
There’ll be picnics and garden parties and street festivals, but I’ll come to all that later. A summer staple of course, and just down the way, is Wimbledon. But unless you want to stand in line for several hours or shell out well over £2000 for the privilege of attending in person you’ll have to watch it at home. Or will you?
One of my favourite local pubs, The Pembroke, has decided to play host for all those important games, sets and matches by revving up their big screens on the mezzanine floor.
Unlike watching sports at so many other London pubs, which can be thoroughly dingy affairs, The Pembroke has a wonderful upstairs gallery with fantastically high ceilings and gigantic windows that wrap around the entirety of two sides of the room. The other sides house an upstairs bar and direct access to a roof terrace… I hope you’re catching the summery drift here.
So, think summer, wide open windows, Pimms, Champagne, strawberries and a full table service all set to the gentle ‘pop’ and ‘whoosh’ of ball hitting racket as Andy Murray makes his way to the final.
Book your table now!
Speak to Angus MacPherson or Lee Cayford on 020 7373 8337The Pembroke 261 Old Brompton Rd, Earls Court, SW5 9JA 020 7373 8337 Mon-Sun: 12pm-12am
Poetry Night – The Troubadour
If anywhere is going to host a regular Live Poetry event it’s going to The Troubadour, Earls Court.
The quirky café plays host to some of the most innovative entertainment in the area and they never fail to deliver the goods they advertise. As proof, poetry night is often a sell out.
Running since early 1997 and set up by published poet and author Anne-Marie Fyfe, this long standing fortnightly performance takes on many shades of regalement by offering up a plethora of artists and poets from all levels of fame within the craft. Not only that, some nights turn into lively debates on the latest publishings or the celebration of past greats with the likes of Keats, Yeats, Rilke being performed, dissected and discussed live.
All of this takes place in the cellar club at the bottom of The Toubadour House and costs as little as £6.00 to attend. So grab yourself a beret and a studied look of deep thought and get thee down to a reading.
Readings are on alternative Mondays from 8 to 10 pm, doors open 7.30pm. For more information, please visit Ann-Marie Fyfe’s website www.coffeehousepoetry.org or contact her on 020 8354 0660.Poetry Night The Troubadour 265 Old Brompton Rd, Earls Court, SW5 9JA 020 7341 6333
Best Cocktails – Evans & Peel – Earls Court
While there is a plethora of watering holes in the Earls Court area to quench one’s thirst, I often long for a bit of that urban edge, the icy cool hand of a slick mixologist and a damned good Old Fashioned without having to brave the East End.
Luckily we have been blessed with a little nook that caters to all the above and I can practically see it from my sitting room window. I have to look closely though because Evan & Peel’s Detective Agency, like all good speakeasies, is marked only with a dimly lit streetlight and a rusty intercom.
You need to ‘book an appointment’ so that someone can ‘look over your case file’ and decide whether or not it is worthy of taking on. And if you fancy sporting your best Great Gatsby get up you won’t be the only one… 1920’s is the theme.
I don’t want to spoil the fun and in the interest of keeping this post on track I’ll cut straight to the chase. The cocktails here are excellent – dangerous, but excellent. E&P don’t deal in single shots, not that you’d notice as these drinks slide down like a dream.
My favourite? An A&T the namesake of a bartender who has long since moved on but the delicate cucumber, tea and vodka infusion he invented has stayed on and let me tell you, it packs a punch. The menu offers a smorgasbord of innovative combinations as well as a firm grasp of the originals, all served in cut glass or, in some cases, a teacup.
Arrive early, plead your case and stumble home.
Evans & Peel Detective Agency 310c Earls Court Rd, West Brompton, London, SW5 9BA 020 7373 3573 Open 5pm-midnight Tue-Thur; 5pm-00.30 Fri-Sat