Offspring of Milk and Honey, The East Room is accessed through a non-descript and unmarked doorway. The main dining and bar area is a huge space with high ceilings, large windows, bare brick walls, an amazing pressed tin roof and an eclectic collection of art deco style furniture. It all brings to mind a New York warehouse apartment or perhaps a Private Members club Shoreditch style.
Of course, this is what The East Room is. Don’t worry though, like Milk and Honey, you don’t have to be a member to take advantage of The East Room. Just make a booking for lunch or dinner or turn up before it is too late at night and you are in. Although our group of five were told when booking that we had to vacate our table by 9.30, there was hardly any one else in the place for dinner on a Monday night and so these admonitions were somewhat unnecessary.
There was a bit of consternation when we discovered the wine list, which acted as a place mat. We like our wine and this wine list was very brief on the details. All you got was the variety and the country that the wine was from with no indication as to the winery or even region. Having said that, the bottle of sauvignon blanc that we did order was very nice.
We decided to share a selection of the starters which mainly featured Spanish tapas style dishes. A small plate of bocarones was fantastic – I can’t get enough of these salty little fish. Over sized green olives were also popular, although probably the best starter was the large plate of grilled prawns served on a delicious slick of oil that we mopped up with crusty bread.
Continuing in the sharing spirit, three of us decided to share the “Big Fish” as a main. Monday’s fish was snapper, served whole in a large tray with a Mediterranean style red sauce, chunks of scalloped potato, grilled peppers and chorizo (pictured). It was sensationally flavoursome and it all felt very homely sharing from the big roasting dish in the middle of the table. It was like you were at a dinner party at a friend’s incredibly cool apartment. Other mains of sirloin steak and mutton shank were pronounced to be equally good.
We opted for dessert wine rather than dessert. It was one of those nights which turned out to be slightly more boozy than expected. Despite our reservations about the wine list we decided then and there that at least one of us should become a member. However, on reflection you can still get that feeling of exclusivity by just heading to The East Room for a meal.