russet 'zine 002

THE RUSSET zine 002 The Russet Amhurst terrace London E8 2BT

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This 'zine features a selection of our cultural events, leisure activities, recipes we like, artists we love, ideas we believe in and other things you really shouldn’t miss — revealing the bustling world of London's Hackney Downs Studios (and beyond).


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THE RUSSET ‘z i n e 0 0 2The RussetAmhurst terrace London E8 2BT

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R U S S E T A L L S O RT SIt takes allsorts. Cafes, restaurants, pubs, social centres of many flavours provide spaces for allsorts to

meet and mingle, relax and refuel. People vary in their character, taste, wants, abilities and requirements

and as people employed in hospitality, our primary aim is to cater for this, for our community, to the best

we can. At The Russet we aim to appeal as equally as we can to the diverse ages, cultures, and trends of

London, all whilst still holding our own identity and integrity and furthermore staying recession proof as

we eat double dip chocolate strawberries. That’s a tough job. But we did choose to take it.

One fundamental difference we have seen between our customers, and a difference that is somewhat

black and white, is between those with kids, and those without. Recently out on the twittersphere we saw

a little storm brewing #cantmoveforprams

Mums looking for a space for their children to play, where breastfeeding isn’t frowned upon. Young up

and coming professionals looking for a space for meetings and deals or just a space to hang loose. The

way we see it, as long as we’re not too self righteous, there’s no reason why both can’t take place side

by side. We love the little ones, the playfulness, the inquisitiveness, they’re our future and they’re pretty

entertaining. We want to see people from all walks of life talking and eating, and being inspired by each

other. We’re blessed with a big enough space to be able to cater for allsorts and try our best to keep the

little ones entertained and well behaved whilst also doing the same for the adults.

So what’s the answer?

We’ve finally got enough money together to insulate the backspace, just in time for Summer, the steel for

structural work has been ordered and we’re designing a beautiful, big, glass arched panel through to the

rear garden, a continuation of thatbeautiful curve to the front. We’re designing and building fold out

tables, chairs and light boxes from recycled materials salvaged from the other building work taking

place.By day we’re looking to move the play area into the back and to curate a programme of entertain-­

ment for the Mums, the Dads (don’t forget the Dads, it takes two),and the little ones. Ranging from singing

and music sessions, to art classes, storytelling, dance and cinema. We’ve got some great kid’s menus

together and some funky colouring sheets to match. My favourite restaurant growing up was the Home-­

stead in Cobham, I won a free meal through the quality of my artwork in the weekly colouring competi-­

tion and was hooked. To my memory, the sheet had hills and animals and was always the same, a classic,

although my artistic touch always added a modern flair. Local artists are currently designing the sheets.

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We’re working on a programme with local schools to get

older kids in for cooking and gardening classes and provid-­

ing work experience opportunities for others.

There’s going to be more plugspaces for laptops, more tables

in the front and in the back, and more games for large, small,

and medium people. The garden is starting to bloom.

We’re introducing more gluten free, vegan and low GI options

for the menus and are excited about the new potential that the

bounty of Spring brings to menus. The evening tapas is hitting

all the right spots and the bar is flowing. Matcha is going onto

the drinks menus, we’ve argued over our favourite Coconut

Water, have finished our juice menus, perfected the Bloody

Mary and are sipping iced coffee like it’s out of fashion.

Fortunately it’s in fashion, Summer is just round the corner

and Hackney Downs is the place to be.

And what is the question? What sort are you? And what would

you like to see more of at The Russet? We want to make it


Descriptive answers and solutions to [email protected]

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L O B O C O L L E C T I V E : 1 0 0 % V I N Y L If you haven’t already been, Lobo Collective is a vinyl-­only DJ session at The Russet every Friday from 6pm.

It’s about the music -­-­ getting producers, DJs and music lovers to dust off the vinyl that inspired them back in the

day and get it spinning again. It’s about the hard to find 7”s from the 60s, the breaks that inspired hip hop, the 90s

classics and anthems, the new rarities, and about celebrating those that still press and push vinyl.

The night is aimed as the social warm up to your weekend, a place where you can catch some warm analogue

sound, eat, drink and socialise with friends before heading out to the clubs in Dalston and the surrounding area.

Every Friday Lobo invites a special headline guest alongside a growing collective of resident DJs and spin a vari-­

ety of records encompassing Funk, Soul, Rare Groove, Electronica, Reggae, Ska, Hip-­Hop, Disco and House. So far

guests have included Jason Spinks of Kristina Records, Ollie Seaman and Myles Mears of Warm Agency, Wax’d and

Make Me.

Lobo Collective is curated by Tom Durston, founder and editor-­in-­chief of electronic music magazine Inverted

Audio. We caught up with him for a chat about what inspired him to setup Lobo Collective in a time where digital is

surely the dominant means of consumption [next page].

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“A lot of people ask me why I bother spending money on records instead of down-­

loading them from the Internet for a fraction of the cost. The thing is, is that I’ve never

been into digital music. I started buying records when I was 13. The music I was

listening to back then, mainly Jungle and Drum and Bass, you couldn’t buy digitally

or on CD. If you wanted the very latest tracks you had to get them on vinyl.

These days it’s a similar affair, I want to spin records that the majority of people don’t

know and when you buy a vinyl only release, it makes those tracks a lot more exclu-­

sive and special. Vinyl records are sculptures of sound, music has been physically

engraved into a disc for you to enjoy. You pick the record up, appreciate the artwork,

pull it out of the sleeve and place it on the platter and lower the needle on the groove.

There’s no skipping through tracks or endlessly scrolling through your entire music

catalogue on your computer. It’s a humble process and for me it is the only way to DJ.

A lot of DJ’s I know prefer to use vinyl as it’s the physicality and sonority of the

medium that attracts them to buy records. Digital files can be lost, deleted and cor-­

rupted. Records are like books; you’ll always have them, even if they’re on your shelf

collecting dust for the next 20 years. They’re timeless artefacts of sound that can be

connected to a particular moment or even environment, even the lo-­fi pops in the

vinyl groove give that track a unique character.

We’re living in an age where the mass digital consumption of music is lowering the

perceived value of music. Don’t get me wrong it’s phenomenal that you can download

music from anywhere in the world for 99p per track, but by doing so generations are

undermining the value of producers investing their life into making music.

Lobo Collective is a celebration of the vinyl medium, an intimate environment where

you can listen to a broad spectrum of music in a relaxed atmosphere that’s far re-­

moved from the confines and hustle and bustle of a dark club space. We want people

to appreciate vinyl records and support the people who keep the record stores open,

they are magical places full of knowledge and history that bring people together in

the celebration of the greatness of music.”

“ They’re timeless ar-­tefacts of sound that can be connected to a particular moment or even environment, even the lo-­fi pops in the vinyl groove give that track a unique character.”

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What is quinoa – and how do you pronounce it anyway?

Quinoa is pronounced like “keen-­wá”. Quinoa is a seed grain that has been

cultivated in the Andean region for over 7,000 years and was considered

sacred by the Inca Empire. NASA researchers too sung its praises, mainly

for its superior nutrient density which made the grain perfect as potential

astronaut food. Quinoa is high in protein, contains a complete set of essen-­

tial amino acids and contains no gluten. The grain is very tasty and actually

has a mild nutty flavour once it is cooked. Enough reason for the UN’s Food

and Agriculture Organisation to declare the year 2013 as “The International

Year of the Quinoa” (and set up a Facebook fan page for it).

From hot recipe to hot headlines

But as the grain grows in popularity in Western countries, a debate is

erupting in the media with thundering headlines such as “Can vegans

stomach the unpalatable truth about quinoa?” (The Guardian) or

“Quinoa: The Dark Side of an Andean Superfood” (Time Magazine). In

a short period of time, quinoa has gone from a local staple to a global

product. When a local food is suddenly transformed into a global

commodity there is an inevitable, and not always positive, shift in the

dynamic between those producing the food and those eating it. And

there can can be environmental costs too. So the question is, if we are

trying to avoid foods that are environmentally and socially destructive,

can we eat this super food with a clear conscience? Like every other

globally traded commodity foodstuff, quinoa is devilishly complicated.

This doesn’t mean we shouldn’t eat quinoa. It just means we shouldn’t

take it for granted or eat it without thinking it through. What do you

think? We would love to hear your thoughts.

Food  Fact  >

Food  Fact  >>

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Q u i n o a r ö s t i with melted goats’ cheese, raw beetroot & elderberry reduction


1 grated beetroot

1 grated carrot

1 parsnip

1 cup of quinoa

Thick slice of goats’ cheese

1. Cook the quinoa by putting 1 cup of quinoa in a pan with the double amount of water for about

20 min. Grate the raw beetroots.

2. When the quinoa is cooked, mix two tablespoons of butter with the still-­warm quinoa along

with salt and black pepper to taste. Then add the raw beetroots and mix with the quinoa. Knead it

through your fingers a few times, and it will clump together. Make multiple smaller patties by sepa-­

rate the mixture into appropriate balls (double the size of a slice of goats’ cheese).

3. Put a slice of goats’ cheese on top and place in the oven (220) until the rösti is crisp and the

goats’ cheese is melted. For around 8 to 10 minutes.

4. Serve with a few green leaves and the elderberry reduction (elderberry, sugar, water reduced

down through simmering. For every 3 parts of elderberry put 1 part sugar and 1 part water).

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People love talking about food. How it tastes. Where it is from. Is it good for me?

Is it seasonal? How much does it cost?

Food for Thought is a new monthly event exploring all things food related. We

want to kick start conversations about food by showcasing amazing projects

and people that work with food and providing an open forum for questions and


For instance Dr Lucy Gulliam from New Dawn Traders, who told us about sail-­

ing to Barbados in search of organic fair trade spices and rum. She is helping to

revive slow cargo and inspire change through adventure under sail.

Made In Hackney also gave a great talk on creating a positive food culture. They

help groups re-­imagine what you can do with food on a tight budget, how to cre-­

ate cosmetics good enough to eat and how to recreate food in a way you’ve never

even considered.

Our second Food For Thought focused on local food, local growers and produc-­

ers. Urban growing has made a full revival with now 8% of London area produc-­

ing fruit and veg. There are lots of great projects making this happen such as

Get Growing. Alex, one of their community growers explained why local food is

important to build a communities’ resilience.

Urban growing is taking on new forms every day; Seattle has just announced

plans for a 7-­acre public food forest. London can learn from this. How amazing

would it be to turn Hype Park into the biggest public food forest in Europe; why

not start with Hackney Downs? Can you imagine walking into Hackney Downs

and picking your weeks worth of organic fruit?

Come down join the conversation, fill your mind and your bellies with new

thought provoking sensations. Help us kick start new conversations. The next

Food For Thought will be on foraging.


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Food For Thought was started by Steve Wilson, founder of The People’s Kitchen, co-­

founder of Dalston Cola and Chef and General Manager here at The Russet, and Nicky

Spear, People’s Kitchen committee member and long standing volunteer in all things

food waste related and community assistant at Project Dirt, the green social network. It

takes place the third Wednesday of every month to explore a new topic or inspiration.

Join this month’s #FoodChallenge @FFTRusset – buy one new local fruit or vegetable

every week.

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C A R D B OA R D C A BA R E TCardboard and cabaret an unusual combination? Not according to performer Margherita Franceschi. Being part of the

theatre and cabaret underground scene she now organises Cardboard Cabaret at The Russet and explains how you can

create enchanted worlds through simple things.

What can we expect from the second Cardboard Cabaret?

Great fun! Cardboard nights are intimate, cosy and quaint. On the first of May students from the London International

School of Performing Art (LISPA) will join us on stage, as will a singer with a ukulele and The People Pile -­-­ a community

of creative movement enthusiasts. Expect powerful physical theatre acts, a very unusual clown solo, a dance with card-­

board and more…

Where does your inspiration come from?

I love theatre and cabaret, but we often associate the word cabaret with glamour, burlesque and glitter, whereas for me

cabaret is more about being together and having fun. It is about sharing that feeling of being in a secret situation togeth-­

er in which you do not have to stick to the usual rules of society. That sensation that we are together here, tonight! I visited

The Russet many times last year; it is one of my favourite venues in London. I like the atmosphere, the people, the food…

So I asked Steve if he was up for doing a theatrical night. The Russet offers an opportunity for brilliant performers to show

their work in a warm and inviting environment.

“we often associate the word cabaret with glamour, burlesque and glitter, whereas for me cabaret is more about being together and having fun.”

What does cardboard mean to you as a material?

I personally really like cardboard. It is an everyday material we

all know, have touched, used... Cardboard triggers memories

too. I have been collecting my old toys and diaries in cardboard

boxes and every now and then, when I open those boxes I find

myself jumping in the far away past. Performance-­wise, I like

the idea of using a simple (and recycled) material to make

something beautiful and powerful. Some years ago a friend and I

created a clown skit; a love story between a bin bag and a card-­

board box. It is universal, simple and funny, exactly what I like

when I go to the theatre.

Cardboard Cabaret takes place every first Wednesday of the

month. The next one is on the 1st of May.

Ticket £5

Meal (from 5pm to 8pm) + Cabaret £12

Cabaret starts 8.30pm (Sharp!)

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Every tonne of recycled cardboard saves

17 trees, 2 cubic yards of landfill capacity

and 4100 Kw hours of electricity!

Did  you  know...?

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B o r n i n L o n d o n t o w nLyrics by Theo Bard

Well I’ve seen a million cars go by on thousands of our streets

I’ve missed a million people’s eyes, they look down at my feet

Sang with millionaires and beggars, sang in every season’s weathers

So I know the season’s fashions, and their fashion is to change

I’ve seen 14 bedroom houses, I’ve seen babes share beds with spouses

I’ve seen opium and cocaine taken long before midday

And inside the concrete walls bed the bankers, bards and whores

Living worlds apart, with inches in between

I was born in London Town

Made my mark on the concrete, my name on the ground

And I know these old streets like the back of my hand

But I’ve never been here before

Well in these streets I’ve learnt and grown, but these streets are not my


For who could lay a claim to the organs of a beast?

And all these people I have known, still living life alone,

My feet pounding out that steady path to peace

I was born...

If the time comes to be free, if I can’t find the space to breathe

I’ll let the city slip behind me into grey

Give up the places that I love, for some sunny sky above

But wherever my feet take me I can’t leave...

I was born in London Town

Made my mark on the concrete, my name on the ground

And I walk these old streets with no one by my side

Still looking for the man I am inside.

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U N D E R G R O U N D F O L K N I G H T WO O D B U R N E RWoodburner began in the darkest depths of Hackney, at The George. It was an old, closed down,

run down pub which was rented out as cheap housing. A small group of students moved in, and

around them grew a community of musicians and likeminded souls.

At the first ever party there, two Theo’s made acquaintance: Theo Bard, singer-­songwriter and

folk musician, and Theo Brown, then anthropology student at SOAS, and a man extremely good

with people and tools.

Time went by and Brown renovated the pub space downstairs, transforming it into a beautiful

space of bare wood. It seemed like the perfect place to host acoustic music, harking back to

older days when music was live, drinks were cheap and local people came to convene at the

nearest pub to hand.

A deal was done. Bard would programme folk music each week, if Brown would build the wood-­

burning stove of Bard’s dreams for the musicians to sing beside. Brown came through with a huge

beast of a stove, and thus, Woodburner was born.

In those heady days, pints were just £2 from a keg, served by pub residents (‘Georgians’), and

other ‘volunteers’. The bar broke even or lost money, as there were so many people helping

(themselves!). Entry was £3, which went to the musicians, as it still does today!

It was a very special, intimate, underground affair; invites went out via word of mouth and text

message, and it had the air of a speakeasy or members club.

At the end of 2010, The George was tragically redeveloped into flats, and Woodburner had to

relocate. Since then, we have run weekly event ‘seasons’ at Dalston Boys Club, Servant Jazz Quar-­

ters, Hackney Downs Studios, and Stoke Newington International Airport, before moving to our

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“It is the dawn of thenew generation and

The Patchwork Paper are here to bring you

the future in creativity.”

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A N U G G E T O F A RT A C T I V I S MLast month a bunch of ridiculously talented poets, musicians and visual artists took over our back space in the name of free ex-­

pression. Hosted by art and activism ‘zine The Patchwork Paper, the funds raised will go towards the printing costs of their next

issue. Sophie Robins and Holly Strauss explain the importance of Art Activism.

What is The Patchwork Paper all about?

The Patchwork Paper is a patchwork quilt of truly original poetry, prose and visual culture for everyone to get involved with.

The magazine was built out of a desire to create a platform for art and literature, publishing free opinion, fiction and encourag-­

ing political (and personal) expression through art; so we have created this nugget of Art Activism.

What is Art Activism?

Art Activism, in the context of The Patchwork Paper, is any kind of creative expression that merges the political, the personal

and the artistic. The Patchwork Paper is a platform for free expression and has an inherently political form, because the act of

writing without censorship and within the margins of freedom of speech is a political act, one that works against the ideologies

of mainstream media. Whether the published piece is a photograph, a poem or an article it will combine artistic talent – writ-­

ing, drawing, composition – with political or personal opinions and feelings.

Why is art important?

Art is important because without art there would be no individuality. Art is important because it is the product of creative

thinking, and without creative thinking there would be no originality. Art is important because it allows us to see the world, and

ourselves, differently. Art is important because without art the artist would be dead.

What does it take to become an ‘art activist’?

In a nutshell, the arts activist uses their art as a vehicle for political change and so to become an arts activist the artist must

communicate their own political ideologies through their art. When creating art with the intention of instigating some level of

political change the artist performs a political act. The arts activist does not create art for art’s sake, the arts activist creates art

to have an impact on politics, and to make a mark on society that may encourage others to instigate social change. To put it sim-­

ply, think about a political issue that makes you angry, express that anger through art and do so with the intention of encourag-­

ing political, and social, change.

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J A M S A N DW I C H is the fruitiest live music

night in London, taking place every last Wednesday of the month,

bringing you live music with an eclectic line up of emerging artists, ac-­

companied by live art from the magical Novemto Komo. The next Jam

Sandwich is on the 24th of May. Stay tuned!

Are you a musician or artist who would like to take part in the next Jam

Sandwich? Please get in touch with [email protected]

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C I N E - R E A L is a non-­for-­profit film club taking place every last Thurs-­

day of the month with the aim of bringing together film makers, actors, writers, direc-­

tors, producers, photographers, cinefiles etc, to enjoy classic films as film and share a

passion for the moving image. The films shown are all 16mm prints. They are also all ex-­

amples of how technical or financial limitations actually led to the development of a new

style, such as the use of jump cuts in French New Wave, due to lack of film stock. Crea-­

tion from limitation! So far Ciné-­Real has shown On The Waterfront, Dial M For Murder,

and King Kong. The next Ciné-­Real will take place the 25th of May.

For more info please contact: info@cine-­

Y O U R W E E K I N C H A L K To stay up to date with the

latest upcoming events, please check the blackboard in the back of the café or go to our

website (, like our Facebook page or follow us on Twitter for daily


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C R E D I T SEditor-­in-­chief Annabel Troost

Cover Sara Gelfgren

Type Design Cezanne Noordhoek


Russet Allsort Steve Wilson

Lobo Collective Tom Durston

Quinoa Recipe David Castro

Food For Thought Nicky Spears

Cardboard Cabaret Margherita Franceschi

Woodburner Theo Bard

Art Activism Sophie Robins

Holly Strauss

Jam Sandwich Lou Wellby

Cine-­Real Liam Saint-­Pierre

The Russet ‘zine is a quarterly ‘zine featuring a selection of our

events, recipes we like, artists we love, ideas we believe in and

other things you really shouldn’t miss -­-­ revealing the bustling

world of Hackney Downs Studios (and beyond).

Are you a photographer or illustrator and would you like to con-­

tribute to the next ‘zine? Or do you want to see your project/event/

amazing idea featured? Please send an email to: annabel@crea-­