Oscars, Ladywell Road

A new cafe called "Oscars" on Ladywell Road has just opened. The website is still under construction, but in-between the Lorem Ipsum you can find some work-in-progress photos, which give an idea of what the cafe now looks like. Here's a shot of the garden - stray ladders indicating that the photo dates back to when it was a building site.




The BC review will follow soon, but please post your comments and reviews here. BC reader Pete says:

"I went with my wife on Saturday and it was really nice. They do a good range of sandwiches, quiches and pastries whilst also having some very nice looking ice creams."

Which is a good start.

46 comments:

Pete said...

Yes it was really nice and very busy which was good to see. They do some toasted sandwiches and some other non-toasted ones all with a continental feel (Spanish Salami etc). The garden out the back was very nice on a sunny day. I didn't sample an ice cream although god knows I wanted to because they looked fab.

Anonymous said...

I can also add, being on the far-flung eastern side of the conservation area, that Oscars is a great addition to what is already in Ladywell (DOES Brockley have a tattoo parlour?)

Very fine coffee, which is almost impossible to find anywhere these days, excellent croissant etc etc

highly recommended

The Brockley Telegraph said...

aha, I will have to try it out and add my appraisal to the 'greater brockley coffee index'. So far:

Broca 5.5 of 10
TM2 5 of 10
Ecosium 2 of 10

Anything below 5 is not drinkable, unless you like the taste of Greek coffee (aka' mud').

Havnt tried matchbox yet, heard surprisingly good reviews about it.

abdou said...

I thought it was right nice and so did my wife

patrick1971 said...

I'm glad this place is seeing some business. I go past it at about 8.15 every morning on my way to work, and never see anyone in there, when it should be packed with commuters getting a coffee. I really hope it does well but the lack of morning trade seemed ominous.

Anonymous said...

where exactly is it? (I know the drs surgery for example as reference point...) thanks

Anonymous said...

I went in yesterday lunchtime and it was packed with mums, kids and pushchairs. I bought a lovely quiche!
Very nice place and very much welcome in Ladywell.

For the anon above: Keep going past the surgery and bear left at the roundabout into Ladywell village. It's down on the right hand side of the road, next to the DIY shop.

cath said...

I can vouch for the coconut ice cream,say no more!
And the coffee too. Lovely place,I'm sure with our support it will develop really nicely. I really like the multi level space and the decor.

Anonymous said...

What happened to the pseudo-spiritual 'life' cafe on the corner? Isn't the premises flogging second hand photocopiers now?

Sorry to be a bit negative, but I'm a bit skeptical about a business succeeding just as a similar type has failed in the same area.

max said...

I used to go to Life quite often and I think that the problem that it had was that it really struggled to make enough money with selling only the few meals that it could serve given the limited space but still cooled full meals and kept open all day only to serve the occasional coffee to the client mostly interested in reading the newspaper in peace.
I may be wrong but I don't think that Life has technically failed, only that the owner decided to wrap up and move on as that business as it was structured didn't give her enough income to make her want to commit herself and to change it in a more profitable way would have meant a serious financial commitment. The cafe wasn't her only income so she could make this choice. There are ways to structure an offer from a cafe so that it takes a bit more money in and costs less to run, I haven't been in the new one, only peeped from outside but it looks a different kind of place, still quite nice, I look forward to give it a try actually.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for that Max.

Clearly Oscars is more geared up to provide a full eatery experience from the outset, but I remember Life being fairly busy for the first couple of years after it opened.

The only sure-fire money-spinners still seem to be the builders' caffs. The one opposite the tattoo parlour is always busy. (I did a bit of labouring/painting with some non-local builders a few weeks ago, and wanted to take them down to TM2/Moonbows at lunchtime for half decent coffee and non-offal bangers, but they didn't want to know. Even with the added selling-point of Brockley's finest eye-candy to ogle.)

spincat said...

Shortly after the Coop reopened I bought some bread from there and thought "this is much nicer than the bread they used to sell". Then they ran out of the nicely-designed and sleek-looking Coop bread bags to put their 'fresh-baked' bread in and I'd got used to the rustic-basket displays, so I though "oh, no, they've gone back to the old bread", but of course, it was the same bread all along.

Although I love TM2 for its garden, its cakes, its main meal (though not so much for its breakfasts), there's many a builders caff where I'd get a better breakfast and better coffee than in the likes of Moonbows. Nothing against Moonbows - but the packaging ain't all.

Anonymous said...

Life was a very different experience from Oscars, as Max has said. Life was tiny, Oscars is bigger for one.

But, and I now that the bakers in Ladywell isn't the worlds best (although their croissants are excellent), I baulk (in fact refuse) to buy bread that cost £2.80 in Oscars, it's far far too expensive. It's not even baked on the premises, which would make a difference.

max said...

I think that because Lewisham is a commuter area those more sophisticated cafes don't make as much money out of lunches as they would do in other parts of London and that's a big problem that successful traditional cafes don't have as they indeed serve what the local working man wants.
Traditional English breakfasts around here are way ahead of nice cafes as income goes, I used to go to H's Cafe in Hither Green Lane when I had my studio there and one big selling point is that white vans (or even diggers) can easily park outside. I think that the number of meals they serve each day runs in the high hundreds.
Evidence of this is that there is a concentration of nice places open for lunch in Catford, next to the only large white collar employer of the Borough, Lewisham Council.

Anonymous said...

Spincat. I'm not being snobby (and can see through the packaging) - it's just that the builders' caffs around here serve pretty revolting food. (Agreed that Moonbows is no great shakes either for that matter, save for their cakes!). I'd even drive over to a greasy spoon in Chislehurst back in the day, when I wanted a good fry up.

To be honest, I'd rather buy the stuff and cook it at home nowadays. Didn't Hugh post something to this effect a while back ?

Anyway. Back to the point. Must check out Oscars!

Anonymous said...

I have used Oscars already and i have to say it is a triumph both for the owners and the people of Ladywell Village. This area really seems to be 'on the up' and it is nice to have an alternative to the greasy spoon.
I was in the other day and some woman baulked at the idea of paying almost two pounds for a coffee saying "I can get one for ninety pence at the bakery across the road"-And your point is love?
It may not be for the price concious but it is for the quality concious.
There also is a great hair and beauty salon two doors away which is also a great addition to the area. Ladywell deserves good quality business' such as Oscars and Geddes Hair & Beauty-good luck to them I say.

Anonymous said...

Ocscars is fantastic

spincat said...

Anon @ 17:51 02 Aug
Have you tried Maggies in Lewisham? I cna think of maybe 2 or 3 other good caffs round about but think that is the best

I liked Oscars too - it reminds me a lot of a place with same name in Hay-on-Wye, which is probably just coincidence?

els kitchen said...

Oscar's is totally great - a breath of fresh air with the beautiful decor and the garden. The ice cream is to die for (try the yoghurt versions - yumm!). £3.20 for an enormous sandwich packed with high quality European meats or cheeses & with salad is a bargain, if you ask me. The bread is fantastic (they get it from Boulangerie Jade in Blackheath). Most of the breads are £2.40 (only one is £2.80) and that is the going price for high quality artisan produced bread. And it's locally produced, keeping money circulating through the local economy and supporting local producers, who must be feeling the pinch now the credit crunch is starting to hit home. Oh, and wheat prices have doubled over the last year, to put the boot in even further. Anyway, I digress - Oscar's is a great addition to the slow rise of Ladywell. Along with the revamped Ladywell Tavern and Geddes hairdressers, I now have even better reasons to spend my money locally and so help put Ladywell back on the map as a village centre and hub of the community. Shop local – shop Ladywell!

Anonymous said...

blimey, "high quality artisan produced bread", I think I'd rather have one produced by a baker for half the price (and with no reduction in quality)

The baker opposite(ish) produces an excellent small farmhouse

Pete said...

I agree that the bread at the bakery is also very nice, but I would agree with els-kitchen that there is a difference between the two types of bread on offer.

Anyway, "you pays your money and you makes your choice" as they say where I'm from.

Do dah said...

I made a naan bread, with fresh coriander and garlic in 15 minutes following a recipe from the internet, a few nights ago. I don't know whether it'd be considered artisan but it really tasted good!

Brockley Nick said...

Pete, are you from the Southern States of the USA, circa 1870?

Pete said...

No I'm from Yorkshire and my Lancastrian mother uses that phrase all the time, as did my granny.

Headhunter said...

Nick - Is "you pays your money and you makes your choice" an American saying from the days of the wild west then? I always assumed it was a pretty common thing to say in the UK

Monkeyboy said...

No, "it's just bread innit" is what they say round 'ere.

(...he says, instigating class war...)

Anonymous said...

Is it?

Anonymous said...

'Artisan' bread sounds a bit like something you'd get where you also get 'pan fried' chicken or whatever. As opposed to fried chicken, which is almost always done in a pan of some description.

nobbly brick said...

means you can charge more for it

Sarah said...

That bakery doesn't actually bake its own bread, apparently. It used to, but it hasn't for a long time now.

Richard said...

Have been in twice now - very nice. Not trying to be anything showy, just a nice, simple café. I hope this works for them.

Honeycomb ice cream was very nice, but I dropped it and the croissant was good.

Anonymous said...

Oscars is great. But the quality of the whole experience depends who is on duty that day. There is a very grumpy woman who can't make a good cappuccino. Other times, I have had great coffee and it is a very relaxing place to sit.

They always seem to run out of the excellent croissant, quiches etc.

Anonymous said...

they claim to do breakfasts-but where's the bacon and egg?

Anonymous said...

It can be a good place to sit, if seemingly every young mum in Ladywell hasn't turned up with their out-of-control kids!

Kake Pugh said...

Does anyone happen to know the opening hours for Oscars?

patrick1971 said...

0800 to 1800, Monday to Saturday. IMHO they're missing a trick by not opening on Sunday; when I lived in Crouch End that was always the biggest cafe day.

Anonymous said...

I think they would like to open on Sundays but they are finding it difficult to get the right staff who can be left on their own to run the place for the day. Working seven days a week is probably unsustainable in terms of the mental and physical welfare of the owners! Maybe they could close on Mondays instead? Would still leave them no time for family life though. Bit of a conumdrum I think.

The quiche and salads are still mighty fine. And the addition of fresh soup for a more wintery menu is great. Let's hope they can widen the offering to include more hot food over the winter months. The idea of salad in December after a walk in the park on a blustery day doesn't really float my boat!

patrick1971 said...

Just a quick plug for Oscars - they are now open on Sundays! Enjoy. (N.B. I don't work there, nor do I know anyone who does; I just like the place!)

Anonymous said...

And there's an Art Gallery around the back of the Ladywell Tavern as well which is well worth a visit (as is the pub)

Comment said...

But most importantly the food is delicious!

Vixil Fundraiser said...

Fabulous addition 2 Ladywell village - especially now that MBJ is gone from other side of the field....stay tuned 4 a local fundraiser that Petra (owner) has agreed 2 host - 14th June from 3-5 o'clock 4 diabetes week - http://www.diabetes.org.uk/About_us/News_Landing_Page/Diabetes-UK-marks-Care-for-a-Cuppa-Day/ - stay tuned 4 further details...

patrick1971 said...

Is the new cafe opposite Oscar's open yet? Had a bit of a peek in when going past on Friday, it looks like it will bridge the market between the more traditional caff next to the bakery and Oscar's. Not quite a greasy spoon, but not as smart as Oscar's.

Vixill Fundraiser said...

New cafe - Yes & Yes (I think) not open yet, but no doubt will be by the time I have my fundraiser at Oscars - hope U can make it...details 2 follow & will be published on facebook events....

Vixil Fundraiser said...

Care 4 a Cuppa afternoon tea fundraiser for diabetes week announced - please join us on Sunday 14th June, for wonderful afternoon tea delights - £15/head (£5 from each sale to Diabetes UK). Petra's homemade delights will feature sensible healthy options for everyone to enjoy. Special 75th anniversary commemorative merchandise will also be on sale on the day or can be ordered on-line.

Musical entertainment generously donated by local talent Jed Dmochowski - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EVYckb2PABc&eurl=http%3A%2F%2Fwww%2Efacebook%2Ecom%2Freqs%2Ephp&feature=player_embedded.

Diabetes UK was founded by the inspiration of author HG Wells 75 years ago. Please come and support Diabetes UK and help us to raise vital funds for the Charity's 75th year.

For further information, see events page on facebook -http://www.facebook.com/event.php?eid=85629028103&ref=mf - or pop into the cafe for a cuppa & book your place before the 14th. Advance bookings only.

Supercez said...

On the afternoon of Sunday 2nd October, I popped into Oscar’s Coffee Shop, in Ladywell Road, to ask if I could use their bathroom facilities. I am a regular customer and local to the area. Most importantly, I am currently 8 months pregnant. I am pretty certain that the woman I spoke to was the owner. She snappily told me that the facilities are only for customers. I found this most upsetting as I am indeed a loyal customer who has always frequented this coffee shop. To then be denied use of the facilities just because I had not purchased something there and then, when they could clearly tell that I am heavily pregnant, was disgraceful. Needless to say, I shall not be going to Oscar’s again!

tip said...

Whilst it does appear a bit mean, best to always carry some change so you can offer to pay, to pee.

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