Behind the counter, a Napoli FC pennant hangs alongside a Charlton Athletic one, which just about sums up this unpretentious caff’s standing in the neighbourhood. The original 1930s decor sends traditionalists into raptures: the front space is bright with polished, peachy Vitrolite panelling edged with chrome, while the tables and moulded plywood revolving chairs date from the 1960s.
The menu – fry-ups and Italian specials – is a joy for the impecunious, with toast at 60p and a cappuccino for £1.60. Or you can push the boat out with a soft, toasty panini of chargrilled courgettes, tomatoes and mozzarella. Carb-loading options are plentiful: as well as a full complement of pasta dishes, there are pancakes and baked potatoes with a range of toppings, and comforting fuel such as steak and kidney pudding. Jam roly-poly with custard is £1.60 well spent. Note that it’s cash only.