I went to meet with Robert Wennberg and Jaime Foà who own and run The yellow house in Lower Road SE16. They welcomed me with homemade nibbles and lots of stories. It was a pleasure to get to know them and to find out about the background to the kitchen and bar but the real reason for my visit was to uncover the details of their newly announced art competition. Robert explained how it began.
“We were thinking about commemorating our 12th Anniversary in Surrey Quays this year with a calendar and that’s how the idea of the art competition started. Wouldn’t it be great if customers and local residents of all ages could contribute to the calendar!?
So we are inviting our customers and local residents to enter The yellow house art competition by submitting artworks inspired by our name “The yellow house”. The twelve winning entries will be reproduced in The yellow house 12th Anniversary Calendar which will be sold in aid of Action Against Hunger whom we have supported from the outset.
With three age groups so the whole family can enter, the competition opens on 6 April and all entries to be in our Calendar need to be submitted by 4 October. CGP London -who manage the Café Gallery and Dilston Grove in Southwark Park SE16 – will help us with the judging. Prizes include a £100 voucher for a meal at The yellow house and everyone who enters will be part of a draw for a two course meal for four people in the dining room. Everyone who wins will get a free Calendar as well.
We plan to display the selected artworks at The yellow house and to host a party for the winners and their families in December.
Anyone inspired to take part can find more information about the art competition on our website.”
Clearly Robert and Jaime are very excited about the art competition and want more people to hear about it and to enter. I asked about the history to their business. Years back, I’d eaten at The yellow house in Plough Way but didn’t know the rest. Robert filled me in.
“The yellow house restaurant opened in Plough Way, Surrey Quays SE16 in December 2003 after we renovated what had been a vacant Victorian corner shop (originally a dairy). From the start, the restaurant was popular so we searched for additional premises in the area and in July 2006 we offered to purchase the Caulkers Public House opposite Surrey Quays station. The Caulkers was in very poor condition and had closed months earlier.
Following a major refurbishment of this lovely old pub, The yellow house bar & kitchen finally opened in May 2008. We planned to operate the original ‘restaurant’ in Plough Way, offering a short, weekly changing and seasonal restaurant menu, alongside the ‘bar & kitchen’ in Lower Road with its bar, grill and wood-fired pizza menus. Sadly, by December that year we decided to ‘mothball’ the restaurant in Plough Way as a result of the economic crisis. Since then, we have focused our efforts on making the bar and kitchen a real centre for good food and company.
Now in our 12th year, we remain an independent local bar and restaurant with a cocktail lounge serving food prepared by us on the premises using fresh, good quality ingredients and offering a great selection of wines, draught beers and cocktails. Our aim is to bring a little joy to our customers with good food and drinks, friendly service, monthly live music performances, regular wine tasting events and – during this year – with The yellow house art competition.
Sam Dowling will be performing live in the dining room from 20:00 on Saturday 7 March. That evening, The yellow house will be offering a special Jazz Dinner three-course menu including a cocktail. Find out more about The yellow house Jazz Nights on their website.