254 Paradise Row, London, E2 9LE
The Guardian says... "If I was asked to choose a restaurant that sums up where the best of London eating is at right now, I’d send them here. It’s not that it’s located in a refurbished railway arch, or that light bulbs dangle from the ceiling, their filaments in view...I’m more interested in the mood: in a noisy elbows-on-the-table room, wherein the inked and bed-headed staff serve seriously impressive food, call you “my darling” and don’t so much pour booze as foist it upon you."
Town Hall Hotel, Patriot Square, London E2 9NF
Evening Standard says... "A tone of culinary alacrity, vivacity and attack is set for the meal. This will be no wandering through a meadow sucking on grass stems. The chicken is a squat cylindrical Kiev with pungent verdant green filling to spill on a shirt or table and the pile of sweet white crab is dotted with “kernels” of spicy mustard-yellow emulsion. The following bread course (no one in the know begins the meal with bread any more) comprises one little loaf that is soft, glazed, almost sentimental, and another more rigorous and demanding served with whipped — topped with toasted barley — and smoked flavoured butters. We do our best not to finish them."
23-27 Wadeson St, London E2 9DR
The Telegraph says... "Puddings were the undoubted triumph of the evening: a fabulous chocolate and almond cake, which was moist but not claggy, served with vanilla ice cream (£6.50); and a strawberry pavlova (£5.50), which wasn’t a true pavlova as I understand it. Rather it was a meringue with the fruit and light-as-air chantilly cream served on the side. A deconstructed pavlova, then. Whatever, the meringue – brilliant white and just the right blend of chalky and toffeeish – was quite the best we have ever tasted."
Sager + Wilde Paradise Row
250 Paradise Row, London E2 9LE
The Nudge says... "This is where you'll find food put together by Australian wünderchef Sebastian Myers. He's putting out simple, reasonably priced, regularly rotating four-course tasting menus (you can add on two more if you're famished) featuring the likes of clams with white asparagus & almonds, Iberico pluma with leek miso, and grilled watermelon with frozen sheep's yoghurt."