I’m pretty sure there is some kind of disturbance of the space/time continuum on Hoe Street. I don’t make this claim lightly, I am after all a qualified scientist, and everything I learned whilst gaining my C grade in GCSE science tells me something isn’t right. I had a wander along Hoe Street on Friday and somehow lost a couple of hours. I thought my watch had broken, but no, time in the rest of Walthamstow was passing as normal, it was the time on Hoe Street that was different. What is this phenomenon that causes hours to vanish? is there a worm hole lurking in the back room of the Rose & Crown, is the old undertakers actually a damaged TARDIS, slowly leaking time vortex out on to Hoe Street? Having considered all the options with my massive scientific brain, I can say no, it’s none of these things. The reason hours, minutes and seconds are stolen away from us on Hoe Street is actually pretty simple, there is a shed load of things to do there. Cakes Aura Rosa can be blamed for some of my missing time, I popped in to have a look what they had, and before long there was a pot of tea and wedge of eggnog cheesecake sitting in front of me. 70 Hoe Street, E17 Art House, and the new chocolate shop can also be blamed for delaying me. The real time stealer was the new kid on the block, the Italian Delicatessen of Walthamstow. Newly opened and packed with cheese and meat, it’s my idea of heaven.
Located at number 38 Hoe Street, in what used to be a pop up shop, the deli opened its doors this week. I missed opening night, which is unusual for me as I’ll go to the opening of a match box if it’s happening in Walthamstow. I think Friday was day two, and I made up for missing the opening by going in twice, once on the way down Hoe street and again on the way back up. The transformation of the the shop is pretty incredible, it has sat closed and empty for a while, with nothing but a pile of unopened mail sitting inside. It now has a slick new sign, a glass counter packed to bursting point with food, and shelves and apple crates loaded with goodies.
As anyone who knows me will testify to, I can not cook. I once cooked a pizza and forgot to remove the foam base before putting it in the oven, I ate half of it before I realised. I even set the oven on fire once when I put the dinner in, took the dog out and forgot about the food that was gently being incinerated back at home. As such, I’m in no position to tell you about the ingredients available in the deli, I can tell you they sell things like squid ink, but I would not have the foggiest what to do with it, though I assume it’s not to refill your pen with. What I can tell you is that all the things I tried whilst in the deli where fantastic. There were tasters on the counter tops, melt in the mouth cheese and slices of cured meat, I tried to resist trying them but failed. The staff are friendly and helpful, I spotted something in the glass counter and asked what it was, before long a few sample slice has been cut off and handed to me, complete with an explanation of what I was eating and how it was made.
One of the things that makes this little shop special is it’s owners, in particular Liz who is also managing the shop. Liz is one of the friendliest people you could meet, and she is a committed foodie. Earlier this year I wrote about the Twilight Market and mentioned that a local lady had wanted to set something similar up, that Lady was Liz. She is also behind the Waltham Forest Food And Drink group on Facebook. Sometimes people have a real passion for something, and Liz is one of those people. She clearly loves what she does, and along with the other owners, she has obviously put her heart and soul in to the Italian Deli.
This latest new comer to an ever changing and ever more exciting Hoe Street, is open Tuesday to Saturday between 11:00am – 8pm, and on Sundays from 11:00 to 4pm. This is a small shop with a big heart, helpful staff and passionate owners make it a great place to visit. Don’t rush your visit though, leave your self time to try the food on offer, speak with the staff, and if Liz is in the shop, have a chat with her. The shop was busy when I went in so you may have to wait, but who cares, good food shouldn’t be rushed. The Deli makes a nice addition to Hoe Street, and I’m sure it will prove to be a massive success.