Published on February 17, 2014 | by Sean McKee

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Theatre review: Southwark Playhouse

★★★★

Southwark Playhouse

The cheap food and drink prices make Southwark Playhouse an alternative to the eateries on offer at LCC. [Bethe Dabbs]

Elephant and Castle is now home to a brand new theatre/cafe-bar. Not unlike similar venues across London, this space can multi-task; with a restaurant area to the front, and two performance spaces, (named ‘little’ and ‘large’ as I was informed by a very friendly member of staff) to the back.

A great advantage of this set-up is that the front of house is for the cafe-bar area, which is completely separate from the performance spaces. This really helps to alleviate the awkwardness of trying to enjoy your food/drink when you’re very close to an area which is staging a performance, something I’ve experienced in other venues.

The playhouse has a great menu of classic cafe snacks and meals, including paninis and wraps, and you can get one of these for just £6 with a drink, which is great value for a Zone 1 location.

The portions are very generous, and the food comes superbly presented on flat boards and are full of flavour, with a real freshness that proves it’s all made on site.

This could also be a pretty cool hangout with a group of friends. A bottle of wine and a small cheese board can be purchased for £17, or if it’s just a social drink you want, a glass of house wine will cost you £3.70 (or a whole bottle for £12!). Both house wines tasted decent and they were very reasonably priced.

The vibe in the front area is relaxed and dimly lit with plenty of low seating, which I think makes it a perfect space to enjoy a relaxing lunch or a drink with friends.

The prices and location make this a very handy alternative to the eateries on offer at LCC, and with that all-important free wifi, you can nip over for an extended lunch break (or a cheeky vino) and still get some work done. Guilt-free lunching is the way forward.

Southwark Playhouse, 77-85 Newington Causeway, London SE1 6BD

 

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