This French / Modern European restaurant is in Bethnal Green and is one of the original restaurants in London to pioneer a minimalistic modern aesthetic. Having not been since 2009, I was pleased to find it had maintained its standards when I visited in Sep 2016. Good solid fare served in a stripped back cool setting with a mixed crowd. Reservations recommended
A traditional gastro pub look downstairs with a hip casual dining room upstairs designed by Martino Gamper. Simple wooden tables, chairs + brown leather sofa chairs make for grown up dining; the playful element coming in via the primary coloured patterned floor. FYI, it has a cute little roof terrace. Order their famous beef barley buns but avoid the Sunday roast which is rather bland. Reservations recommended.
Morito is a chic tapas & mezze with Spanish and N.African influences. It has a lovely central bar perfect for dining. It’s got quite an industrial feel to it with lots of zinc running through the room. There’s one on Hackney Road – the original is in Exmouth Market next to its sister restaurant, Moro. Only had a small bite to eat here, so keen to go back and check it out properly. Walk Ins and Reservations. Read more here.
Oklava serves up tasty ‘modern’ Turkish fare in a contemporary setting. There are a few individual tables with marble tops, plotted across the room but the seating mainly comprises stools dotted around the outer edge of the room and at the bar itself. It’s a smart, modern looking space with blue x rose gold accents. NOTE: Manager can be quite abrupt. Reservations recommended. Read more here
Banging plates of Thai food coming out of this deservedly hyped restaurant, housed in a pared back tropical, sophisticated space. The beef curry and deep fried sea bass we had when we went were packed with flavour. Yes, the wait is painful (we spent 2.5 hours at the bar) but it is well worth it. This is a place I would happily come back to again and again. Reservations recommended. Read more here