7 Ethical places to visit in East London
An ethical day out in East London, from your morning coffee to your evening meal.
If you’re visiting London for the day, or you’re a seasoned local getting to know your home a little better, we highly recommend choosing one particular part of the city and exploring it a little further; dip into local coffee shops, stroll through quiet residential areas and get to know the area properly.
London is a special place and there is a lot more going on here than first meets the eye. So, if you’ve chosen to hang out in East London for the day and want to make a positive impact at the same time, this is for you. We’ve put together a guide of some of our favourite ethical, East London hangouts that we think you’ll love.
If you’re looking to start the day right we have to suggest heading to Dusty Knuckle for a coffee and a fresh pastry. Originally born in a 40ft steel freight container in 2014, The Dusty Knuckle Bakery and cafe can now be found in a permanent space just off Kingsland Road in Dalston. Everything is freshly made in house and they serve Ozone coffee.
If you’re looking to pick up something special, perhaps a gift or a well-deserved treat for yourself head down to Hackney Road where you’ll find Henri.
Henri produces ethically made women’s shirts. The designs are simple, elegant and well-made, everything you could ask for in an everyday shirt. But, their store also offers a thoughtfully curated selection of pieces from other ethical brands such as Zoe Morton, A Woven Plane and Ren London.
Botany is one of the most beautiful shops in Hackney and well worth a visit if you’re in the area. You’ll find a carefully curated selection of ethically sourced, hand-crafted homewares, organic skincare products, stationery, paper goods, clothing alongside an ever-changing abundance of indoor plants, plus a weekly selection of cut and wild flowers.
Botany is a little further East than the others on this list but it’s well worth a visit if you’re heading that way.
Whether you’re in need of a quick trim, a full colour or something for a special occasion, Glasshouse Salon is the perfect stop off. Part of the creative community at Netil House, by Broadway Market Glasshouse Salon specialises in modern cuts and colour, with an emphasis on the long-term condition of your hair.
If you’re looking to pick up a few ingredients for tonight’s dinner head over to Bulk Market. Bulk Market is a social enterprise based in Hackney, East London who are on a mission to tackle food and packaging waste by ditching disposable packaging. Remember to take your containers.
If you’re looking for something ethical, different and simply delicious, you have to try Cub. Cub is a partnership, collaboration, restaurant and precious project from a collection of great minds, including Mr Lyan (of White Lyan - famed for its no-waste, no-ice policy) and Doug McMaster (of pioneering zero waste Silo, Brighton). They use considered ingredients and apply sustainable methods to create delicious stuff that does good too.
The set menu costs £45 for 5 courses, and gives new life to ingredients often overlooked, such as chervil root, grapes and whey. Whilst not entirely vegetarian, the menu is ‘flesh free’.
Finally, if you’re tired after a busy day and fancy grabbing a takeaway on the way home, try downloading the Too Good To Go app. By downloading the app, you can browse restaurants and cafes near you that will be selling their surplus food. Pay for it, then collect it later during the allotted time slot. All the food is fresh from the day, just unsold. Eat it for dinner or save it and take it in for lunch the next day.
If you come across any other ethical treasures whilst on your travels do let us know!