It's still early, so we decide to head over to the Salibsury Hotel in Haringey for a few drinks. The Salisbury Hotel is pretty neat…it's Victorian…ornate. Nooks & crannies. It was too dark to get a picture of all the wrought iron on the outside, but I found this picture on Flickr that hopefully no one will mind me using…
The Salisbury Hotel
1 Grand Parade, Green Lanes
020 8800 9617
We're wandering around the Salisbury, looking for somewhere to sit when we run into my friend Alex, the world-traveler and the only person I know whose CD collection is larger than mine. He and Fripp are sharing a cozy little nook (note, they're not a couple or anything) and we join them for a beer. Well, one beer turns into four and before we know it, Fripp has disappeared and Alex is falling asleep at the table.
But the night is not over yet! No! We hop on a bus–how we love the bus!–towards Holloway for what else but a kebab at nowhere else but…
Crystal Restaurant (also known as Crystal Kebab and Crystal Charcoal)
522 Holloway Road
020 7281 2846
The lamb rotating on the spit doesn't have that overly processed look to it…it looks like real meat! And guess what? THEY ARE OPEN 22 HOURS A DAY.
My Chicken Doner is one of the absolute best I've ever had. Actually, it is THE BEST. It's not in a pita, but rather is wrapped in something almost tortilla-like. If they're Turkish, can you call it chapati? I ask for no tomatoes and no onions and the staff cheekily hand me my doner and announce that it has extra onions and extra tomatoes. And you know what? The staff are kinda cute. (But I will not deny the possibility of beer goggles at this point in the evening.)
So part of me is wondering if I am imagining the deliciousness of this kebab, but I did a little research and founds all sorts of positive reviews. BBC boards. London-Eating. And a site all about kebabs. And this from Restaurant Spy. I am not alone in dreaming about my next visit to Crystal.
We enjoy our kebabs and I tell all my stories of refusing to share hotel rooms with single girl friends anymore. (I've taken one for the team two times too many.) We wander to the bus stop–the 43 runs all night!–and digest our kebab and our best day ever.
Me: "Wow, I wonder what time it is. It must be around midnight or so."
Ben: "Yeah, probably around midnight."
Me, Looking at Mobile Phone: "Holy crap! It's 3 a.m.! We met at 3 p.m.!"