Thursday, 21 June 2012

Pizza East review Shoreditch High Street - a hip pizzeria


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Address: 56 Shoreditch High Street,
London E1 6JJ
Tel: 020 7729 1888
Nearest Tube station:
Shoreditch High Street

Ratings (out of 5 *)
Price: below £25 pp
Service charge: 12.5%
Taste: ****
Service: ****
Ambience: ***
Despite staying in East London (I've been told that Angel belongs to the east despite having a postcode with an 'N'), I've never ventured much beyond Commercial Road when it comes to filling my stomach. Perhaps if I'm a couple of years younger, you'd find me roaming the streets of Shorditch during mealtimes. There is so much the stretch of area has to offer.

It so happened that Wife had a session at Cowshed, just opposite Shoreditch High Street station. When asked where's good to lunch, the reception at Cowshed recommended Pizza East immediately. "Just round the corner," she said "it's quite good."

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Opened in 2009, Pizza East has its loyal followers. Set on ground floor of Tea Building means that there is no shortage of space. Tables are set wide apart, which means ample space for LO to run wild. Pizza East sure ranks up there in terms of child friendliness. The ever so friendly staff were playing peek-a-boo with LO before long. A highchair, colouring pencils and even babycinno soon follow upon request.

Despite the name, Pizza East is much more than just pizza. Other than a healthy list of pizza, it offers the likes of fried chicken livers and calamari, mac 'n' cheese, beef lasagne, rib eye steak, salads, veal bons marrow and ham and cheese boards. A mix mesh really, in fact, I'm surprised to see no burgers on the menu.

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Lunch was San Marzano tomato pizza (£10.50). I was looking down the list and stopped at the mention of goats cheese. The tangy taste of goat cheese cuts through the bittersweet tomatoes with a tinge of garlic. Unlike the pizzas that I've come across, Pizza East's come with puffed up edges. They almost look comical. That said, biting through chunks of that soft bread was more than satisfying with tomato base on my palate.

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Garlic bread (£3.50) was ordered for LO's benefit; she was quite taken with La Divinia's. She gave Pizza East's a wide berth and I can see why. The top of the thick bread was soaked with a greenish garlicky spread, which didn't quite flavour the entire chunk. Disappointing, it would have been left untouched if not for the lamb meatballs.

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Now, the lamb meatballs (£5) was a totally different matter altogether. They were packed but not too dense, firm yet yielded easily to the knife. The spice infused in the lamb minced came through nicely. The best bit, however, was the spicy tomato sauce generously doused on the meatballs. That was where the garlic bread fitted in.

With an almost hip atmosphere, I imagine that Pizza East would be packed during the evenings. If you are looking for a quiet place to hang out in the afternoons, look no further. The range of newspapers neatly laid out on the bar counter helps too.


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