In a market dominated by the (pizza) chains, a genuine down-to-earth pizzeria with sensible prices is a good find. Of the chains, I always say that Pizza Express sets a very good standard, but sometimes you want to get a bit more down-to-earth, eating in a place run by the owners and rubbing shoulders with the hoi poloi. That's when I head for LaLa Pizza, on the corner of Cambridge Road and London Road - not far from Kingston town centre. It's an absolutely tiny place, nothing fancy, with no-nonsense, quick service and delicious (approx) 8 inch pizzas, priced around £4.50 - £6.50. With generously topped thin crusts, they're nice and oily, how I like them. The menu is extensive, with all the usual suspects from 4-cheese to spicey pepperonis - and each of them named after an Italian of distinction. Start with a Peroni beer and the bread sticks before tucking into your pizza choice - which arrives in quick time. And perhaps pop down the road for an after dinner beer at the Kingston Tup.
If you are looking for a mid shopping lunch time meal don't bother with the Litten Tree in Kingston! Situated just off Fife Road the Litten tree is part of a chain of modern pub/restaurants. The menu is varied & offers 3 courses priced at about £3 for a starter, £4-5 for a main & about £3 for a pud. The starters on offer included various natcho's, potato skins & the like. The main courses offered burgers,traditional dishes like sausage & mash, veggie options & steak as well as wraps & baugettes. The puds looked very tempting but as the following paragraph will show, I didn't get to them. I ordered a Brie & broccoli rosti & my companions ordered mega burgers. After 55 minutes my companion went to the bar to enquire where our food was. The two burgers arrived within minutes, they were according to the menu acompanied by a generous amount of fries, the word generous may have different interpretations too many, what arrived was far less than generous. The burgers were 2 4oz patties, bacon, cheese & salad, of which the iceberg lettuce was well past its best. My meal arrived at least 10 minutes after the burgers, the menu said that the rosti had herby potatoes & petit pois with it. The meal that was presented to me had no peas, these were provided some 5 minutes later! In the mean time I started to eat the rosti, the meal consisted of frozen broccoli, cauliflower & carrots in a cheese sauce, the veg was disgusting & the plate contained as much water as sauce, I noticed the plate did not contain any potato rosti at all. I promptly sent the whole unappatising mess back & asked for a refund. My waitress offered a replacement meal, but after waiting in excess of an hour I refused. Maybe your local Litten Tree is a different story, I for one will never darken the doors of this particular chain ever again!