Brick Lane’s Indian restaurants and vintage shops better watch out as there’s a new kid on the block called Hopscotch, an inspiring new restaurant and basement-drinking den at 202 Brick Lane. The philosophy of this new two-floor golden pineapple filled hangout is social sharing plates and experimental cocktails served until the early hours, with a choice between upstairs for casual-fun and downstairs for gatherings and dates with moody lighting and booths.
Nestled upstairs in a cozy corner, I enjoyed a full view of the energizing turquoise color scheme complimented with tan leather seating, vintage art and oak warm wood floors and copper & gold decorations.
Jonathan Cowley, restaurateur and founder of Hopscotch has brought on chef Luke Findlay whose exciting and powerful combinations were presented before me. Gut-friendly dishes, locally sourced ingredients cooked over oak or coal, duly impressed and left the chefs with a new fan.
I started with the House Pickles of cucumber, turnip and cauliflower, each vegetable marinated with different flavor and unique in color. The perfect side to compliment my first cocktail called Mexican Breakfast (spiced peach, apricot, lemon, tequila, egg white).
Then followed a delicious counterpoint of classic cabernet sauvignon against bright green Kohlrabi 5, a layered dish of za’atar and dill on smooth cultured cream. I tried the Grilled Spring Cabbage covered with 6 miso butter and parmesan, this was a taste bomb, fresh and light but full of intense flavour. My friend’s favourite was the Smoked eel, served on rye toast, kraut, ranch & apple.
The dishes come out in a steady flow allowing you to mindfully enjoy each dish without being overwhelmed. Our final arrival was the Smoked Goat Flatbread, a spicy rich stack of 10 Tamarind and bitter melon with a side of Slaw 4 (the usual suspects). You only need 3 plates each to feel totally satisfied, striking a balance between hearty portions and the novelty of multiple smaller dishes. To our delight we unburied ceramic plates adorned with brightly colored patterns as each dish promptly vanished, bringing a final joy to the meal.
When I return next, I look forward to being seduced by their drinking den in the basement as I’ve yet to try their Aficionado cocktail, a luring blend of orange & lemon sherbet, red wine, nutmeg and rum and more….
202 Brick Lane
Follow Hopscotch on Instagram @HopscotchLDN