I’ve already told you, I’m not cool enough for East London.
It feels a bit like visiting that edgy exhibition that pushes boundaries, makes you question the uncomfortable, and leaves you feeling a bit twitchy behind the rope to either touch, photograph or stare what is inexplicably defined as art.
This is how I feel as soon as I cross central, emerging into the depths of the über trendy, often strange realm of what is East.
The thing is, these cool kids are knocking out some damn good food – and to my delight, they tend to be cooking up something wickedly naughty. Cue HOTBOX.
This isn’t new. In fact, if you’re a clever cookie, you’ve already been tempted by the foodporn and made your way to Spitalfields for a feast of epic proportion. This is what I did, and forgot to tell you about it. I’m sorry, I’ve been busy! Don’t give me that look, you’ve had your fair share of foodporn via my Instagram & Twitter @Alessandra_LDN… so no complaining.
Here’s your menu, have a little browse and try to control yourself for the cravings to come. Maybe you can even guess what I’ve ordered… although, unfortunately, it wasn’t one of everything. After serious debate, reasoning and compromise, we made our choice. This particular brunch managed to tick all my brunch boxes: savoury, sweet, filthy, indulgent, and naughty, with a side of comfort.
We started with a special that sounded too tempting to pass up: slow-cooked beef brisket sandwiched between sweet brioche buns, topped with homemade coleslaw and pickles.
Accompanied by a skillet of creamy mac & cheese, with a perfectly crispy, crunchy top. Beef rib tacos with crispy shallot, rocket, chipotle mayo and chimichurri – good enough for me to admit they satisfied my Mexican food standards. Ay yi yi, I could’ve eaten this all over again.
Last to compete for foodporn glory, the chicken and Belgian waffle. A fried chicken thigh with truffle salt atop a fluffy Belgian waffle, begging to be drizzled with maple syrup. The action shot of your foodporn fantasies.
That’s a pretty attractive lineup, if you ask me.
The servers are lovely, and the atmosphere lively, with the extreme comfort food even influencing a few diners to break out in song. Crawl there hungry on a Sunday morning, and I promise your every indulgent desire will be met.
Afterwards, wander around the streets to walk off your aching stomach and admire the aforementioned art: perplexing fashion, captivating street art and stylish shops selling something hip in a vast amount of space, mocking the extortionate rent prices elsewhere.
If you’re in the area, be sure to check out Mast Brothers.
These Brooklyn brothers are artisan chocolate makers, with a factory flagship located in Shoreditch. Tour their chocolate factory, sip special hot chocolate and make sure to pick up some pretty-papered bars as a gift for a friend or sweet treat when you finally come down off your brunch high. The goat milk chocolate bar was a personal favourite, and I’ve been a particularly good friend lately…