Hackney Coterie, run by Lyon’s Seafood & Wine Bar founder Anthony Lyon and sommelier Kelvin McCabe, has been since last summer but they’ve just made the move to a tasting menu format, Dominic Auger (ex-HIDE and Scully) is still heading up the kitchen but he’s now cooking regularly changing five- and seven-course meat, pescatarian or vegetarian menus, so we popped by to give it a try.
There’s an emphasis on minimal waste cookery, which was shown off to great effect with the first dish of fish crackling with smoked tofu dip, perfect to snack on with a glass of wine. The thousand layer szechuan potatoes with black tea mayo that followed were reminiscent of the confit tatties at Quality Chop House; golden and crispy although the Asian flavours promised in the description didn’t come through nearly enough. The same goes for the charred leek with horseradish and garlic butter milk sauce, which could have been much punchier with the horseradish.
The execution of the main was much stronger; the mutton loin was pink and tender, the coal roasted turnip puree was smooth, the artichoke crisps added texture and the mint oil really lifted all the earthy flavours. The menu finished with a celeriac cake, akin to baba as it was soaked in porter syrup, and topped with malted cream. We’re fans of veg in desserts as it can stop them from tipping over into sickliness and this one had a good balance of savoury and sweet.
The meat five-course menu comes in at £35 (with supplements for bread and cheese courses at either end), which is decent value for what you get. If you don’t want to commit to a full meal, Hackney Coterie is also a wine bar with a focus on low intervention, organic and biodynamic vino, so it’s somewhere you could pop in for a few glasses, and they have well stocked shelves too if you’re after a bottle to take home.
230 Dalston Lane, London E8 1LA