All posts filed under: East London


Gluten Free Dining at Blixen, Spitalfields

Blixen is a new opening just around the corner from Spitalfields Market. It stands on the site of an old bank, two walls house huge windows with metal fanlights to let in acres of natural light.   The interior décor is all rough brickwork, whitewashed and surmounted with walnut wood. The ceiling’s a beautiful construction of pale floorboards. The bar’s a white shrine, cunningly lit, with bottles of spirits in glass-fronted cupboards, and globe lamps on stalks. Beside the kitchen is a cute pergola hung with vines, past which you’ll find an outdoor terrace for drinks. Downstairs there’s a little cocktail bar that takes up to 45 drinkers and a private dining room for 18 in the old vaults.   The owners are Clive Watson, who’s spent a decade doing up London pubs (notably The Garrison and The Riding House Café) and Justin Gilbert, a designer of immense style and swishiness. Their first restaurant is perfectly proportioned, cosy, bustling and instantly appealing to walk into.   Gluten Free Food at Blixen: Gluten free options on …


Gluten Free Fried Chicken at Bird, Shoreditch

Rejoice, one and all! Gluten-free fried chicken exists! Head to Bird in Shoreditch (42-44 Kingsland Road, E2 8DA) to stuff your face with enough fried chicken to make the Colonel jealous.   The chicken is fresh, free range and comes from Yorkshire farms. Bird’s gluten free honey ginger wings in particular are truly finger lickin’ good.   Accompaniments include chips cooked separately, punchy sauces (such as gochujang Nashville hot and buttermilk ranch), salads, padron peppers, slaws and giant ice cream sundaes. Who wants fried chicken? We want fried chicken!   Bird, 42-44 Kingsland Road, E2 8DA

Yalla Yalla, Shoreditch Pop-Up

Yalla Yalla, Shoreditch Pop-Up

These days Londoners love a good pop-up. Nothing makes a London dweller happier than the thought of eating food in a converted shack, out of a van or on a street corner. It is a very cool thing to do, you see. Very chic, as they say, before, all being well, they are punched squarely on the nose. Anyhow I digress, here’s a pop-up and it’s actually quite good. It’s called Yalla Yalla, an annoying name if ever there was one.     Yalla Yalla serves Beirut Street Food. And it’s in Shoreditch. And it is indeed housed within what looked to me like a warehouse of some sort. There is also shisha, and a wine stall. I know, so far it sounds positively hideous but do bear with – it’ll turn out alright in the end. The menu is a condensed version of Yalla Yalla’s full grown restaurants, with a few mezze bits and bobs and main meaty dishes of what are essentially poshed up kebabs. There are also wraps and lemonade, which a …

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The Old Red Cow, Smithfield

Looking for the perfect place for your Sunday Roast? Of course you are. Well the Old Red Cow isn’t perfect, but you could do a lot worse in the capital. This independent pub is situated on the doorstep of London’s legendary meat market, Smithfield, so there’s no excuse for shoddy roasts here. First impressions were good – it’s a homely, cosy little pub that was absolutely heaving on our visit despite being in the middle of bloody nowhere (Smithfield is deserted of a weekend, positively ghostly). On Sundays the Old Red Cow only does roast dinners. On this occasion pork belly, roast beef, or some sort of nonsense vegetarian option probably involving nuts and seeds (I jest, I jest, it was vegetable parmigiana). The wine list is a bit odd. It’s doing the Innocent Smoothies we’re oh so friendly and kitsch-ed up to our eyeballs thing, you see. Plonk, they say, with a hilarious smirk as if daring you to order it. I did though. Then the food arrived, and this just turned the whole …