Esoteric London

No. 287: Fleet Street, EC4

Posted in Eating places by esotericlondon on April 5, 2011

El Vino, Fleet Street, London, EC4. Photo © Roger Dean 2011

Charles Jennings writes:

Havanas to Take Out. A Chained gaslamp. Harry Hall, The Coat Breeches Habit & Costume Specialists, gracing a barometer on a wall as brown as the suede of my shoe. Wines from, in order, Spain, Portugal, France and Germany, because, of course, El Vino. The ladies used to have to retreat to the restaurant space at the back so that the men –

 

– of course, the men. Well, El Vino. They had the run of the front half of the bar. The noise, the smoke, five p.m., copy in, not long before the presses rumbled, the Law Courts emptying out, elbows and briefcases and worsted, Harry Hall, the men

 

– quieter now, of course, the men can’t drink the way they used to, wines of Spain, Portugal, France and Germany, the Havanas must be taken out, the barometer doesn’t work, of course, are you about to steal my punchline?

 

Oh, for God’s sake, two more reds then. What was my punchline?

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