loti eats: bala baya

The Union Street arches is upping its food game with the latest branch of Macellaio RC and new Israeli joint Bala Baya both taking up residence recently. The Bala Baya team has really made the most of their arch, splitting the restaurant across two floors…bustling, cafe-style downstairs with an open kitchen and a more relaxed upstairs space, both decked out with bauhaus-inspired interior design.

There’s a custom pitta oven which has travelled all the way from Tel Aviv and spits out increds bread; pop in at lunchtime to get your hands on one of their pitta pockets. Whilst come dinner it’s all about sharing plates and chef Eran Tibi has created a good spread across meat, fish and veg. Our highlights were the tender lamb neck with dumplings and pecorino, sweet and nutty aubergine tea with milk, super fresh snapper tartar and the vivid orange and very moreish crispy sticky chicken with harissa and butternut squash. Make sure you leave room for dessert though because the chocolate and hazelnut babka with stewed plums is worth an order, and they don’t skimp on the portion either.

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With homemade Gazoz and Med-inspired cocktails making the drinks menu more than a match for the food, if you want a taste of Tel Aviv, you only have to travel south of the river.

Arch 25, Old Union Yard Arches, 229 Union Street, London, SE1 0LR

Photo credit: Big Shot London