Carshalton and Wallington has been a Liberal Democrat seat since 1997, though never a strong one: in the 2017 general election, Tom Brake MP beat the Tories’ Matthew Maxwell-Scott by little over 1,000 votes. It will be another tight race this month in a commuter suburb few are rushing to declare a dining destination of note. Still, here’s where to eat when out canvassing.Read More
Where to Eat When Campaigning in Carshalton and Wallington
Award-winning kebabs, perfect paella, gently nostalgic baked goods, and more
Filling the proverbial boots with pub food is a campaign-trail tradition. There’s the classic kind a-plenty at The Sun: think gourmet burgers, elegant but substantial roast dinners, veggie Thai-inspired curries and big beer battered onion rings. A decent shout.
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Comfort is the thing here: Korykos serves what can only be described as happy-making Turkish food. After a morning mooching around Carshalton Park (which is lovely), the restaurant’s hefty meze platters, generous with silken hummus, richly spiced green beans and bulgar wheat salad, would do nicely. The halloumi fries aren’t bad either.
King of Carshalton chippies, this. Chipsmiths, on the High Street, boasts big portions of flaky haddock and soft fried chips. The crispy batter matches famous shops in town and the mushy peas are plentiful. It’s the safest bet near Carshalton Ponds.
Baked goods are another campaign-trail staple. Even though the quality is superior, Coughlans is arguably south London’s version of Greggs. It’s institution enough (going since 1937, in fact) and might have a delicate Percy Ingle vibe about it. The meal deal, comprised a sandwich, sweet, and a drink, would fill up any hardline political campaigner. Try a cheese toastie and the bread pudding.
Over on Manor Road in Wallington, El Nido, a convivial Spanish joint, has been run by three generations of the Garcia family since 1978. The food might be a little 1970s too, but that doesn’t mean it isn’t some of the best in the area. Expect decent gambas, hearty paellas, and well-cooked steak (Diane is available).
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Byrnes Pie and Eel House
Ross Parade is home to this culinary gem. Despite much ado about London’s pie and mash sphere, Byrnes Pie and Eel House flies largely under the radar on account of its suburban nature and lack of East End credentials. But it’s a fine place to stop for lunch: the pies are seasoned and the liquor is generous.
Impressively, Wallington Express was named London’s best at the annual British Kebab Awards last year. The place has been going for more than 15 years and serves a doner as it should be, garlic sauce and chilli abound, salad falling out of soft bread, ribbons of lamb tumbling into dewy onions at midnight or some other time. The shish are legit too. Lots of char on the succulent chicken.
Serving pasta and pizza, Vinoteca Italiana is nothing like Pastaio or Franco Manca: think old-school chequered tablecloths, big Chiantis and little candles. It’s a safe bet for a morsel of Parma ham and mozzarella. And there’s tiramisu, the finest dessert.