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Maeve Binchy's legacy feeding expats in London

Irish expatriates living in London are heading to a newly opened restaurant on Lower Clapton Road to get a little taste of home.

Maeve's Kitchen has been set up by Dominic Dromgoole, artistic director of London's Globe Theatre, with the money that one of Ireland's most famous writers left to him, reports the Telegraph.

Here hearty stews and other one-pot dishes are served up in the homely surroundings that could be found in many of Maeve Binchy's novels.

She died at the age of 72 last year, but Droomgole remembers her and husband Gordon breaking bread with his family, as they were all very close.

He told the news provider: "We ate together numerous times; she was a much-loved friend."

It therefore seemed appropriate to use the small legacy she left to Dromgoole to set up a restaurant in memory of the woman he described as being like an "extra mother".

"I have no experience, but I think everyone has a restaurant in them. Once it gets into your imagination you're finished. Three hours later you're designing the napkins," he added.

Food is such an evocative thing and having well-made versions of the dishes mothers and grandparents made at home helps people to overcome their homesickness.

Sensibly for someone new to the business, Dromgoole has kept the menu brief, allowing those items that are offered to be done well.

He also says that the choice of just four different stews relieves the stress of deciding what to order, suggesting that fine dining can be a tiring experience.

The food on offer is by no means boring, with slow-cooked duck confit and rabbit stew a popular option.

Despite only having been open for a short number of weeks, Maeve's Kitchen is proving a success and even runs out of stew on some nights as diners fall over themselves to have a taste.

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