Photography by Chris Osburn
Not content simply to revel in the chatter about his Shoreditch House being such the happening members club, entrepreneur Nick Jones has opened Pizza East, in the industrial chic Tea Building. A kinetic Lower Manhattan atmosphere, lots of beautiful people eating attractive dishes and a fairly impressive menu means long time East Enders are probably shaking their heads in disbelief at this upstart Shoreditch glamour. It also means that Pizza East is a pretty safe recommendation for all sorts of peeps looking for a good meal in a nice setting. Having only been open for little more than a month ,there's quite a buzz about Pizza East. Make a rez or prepare to wait. We dropped in early on a Thursday night to a packed house and assumed it to be ladies night. Girls outnumbered guys at almost two-to-one with more blondes in the restaurant than one would expect on a Thursday night at any but the most Scandinavian of venues. Just something to keep in mind.
As for the food, a few things are worth noting. Pizzas start at £6 (for a margherita) with most hovering round ten quid. We love the spicy sausage, mozzarella, sprouting broccoli, garlic pie (£11) as well as the veal meatballs, prosciutto, sage, lemon, parsley, cream (£12). Crisp crusts and quality ingredients are appreciated. However, the pizzas with red sauce disappoint. The sauce is just too sugary for our tastes. We reckon such a sweetly sauce might be in line with the taste buds of many Londoners though.
Starters are exceptional. Soft polenta with fried chicken livers and salsa rossa Calabrese (£5) is hearty stuff that we'd eagerly request again. Wood roasted bone marrow, radish, parsley and rustic bread (£7) is a savoury way to start a meal too. The rest of the menu looks tempting. Beef cheek, porcini, parsnips, horseradish gremolata (£14) baked in the wood oven sounds like one for next time! A well rounded (if mostly Italian) wine list, adequate service and a snazzy vibe should be reason enough to poke one's head in. Not sure it lives up to the hype (and the too sweet tomato sauce was truly a bummer) but Pizza East certainly has its merits.
Pizza East is located in the Tea Building at the corner of Shoreditch High Street and Bethnal Green Road. Check 'em out online at http://www.pizzaeast.com.
READ OUR UPDATED REVIEW OF PIZZA EAST HERE.