Untitled, Kingsland Road: Dalston bar ‘with no name’ is rich in intrigue
- Credit: Untitled bar in Kingsland Road
The Gazette is impressed with the innovative nine-course Japanese tasting menu at Untitled in Kingsland Road, Dalston
Untitled’s uber-minimalism is the first thing striking thing about it, along with its name - which suggests it doesn’t really have one.
Hackney’s known for its trend-setting venues, and this is way up there in the stakes.
A concrete bar in a concrete-walled room is punctuated only by a concrete bust.
And the food matches the intrigue.
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An innovative nine-course Japanese-inspired tasting menu delivers an exciting foodie journey, and what’s more the price doesn’t the bank. At £52.50 for two people sharing, it’s exceptional value.
Something resembling a bit of plastic was proffered to “clear the palate”. It also had the texture of plastic, dissolving on the tongue and flavoured with rosewater and raspberry. It’s weird, but I like weird. Bring it on.
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Pears pickled in shiso with a topping looking like cobwebs is served first, in shiny black glazed earthenware. Fermented radish with purple shiso mint leaves and an unusually refreshing tomato salad with watermelon and mint come next. We marvel at the novelty of it all. A gloriously rich yet mellow sashimi with bright orange sea buckthorn juice looks splendid, and a lamb and brioche bun has a layer of shiitake mushroom jelly and ginger. Boneless chicken wings were perfectly crispy with a sweet kimchi sauce, and purple potatoes look like grey rocks amid a sea herb mayo - a potato salad with a Japanese twist. I generally avoid mussels but don’t want to miss out judged on what’s been served up so far. Piled on leeks in a tangy lemony butter broth, they are exquisite. Smoked aubergine is covered in hazelnut sauce - a bit like baba ganoush with Nutella.
Tangerine marshmallows are on the dessert with warm tempura chocolate balls. Don’t bite into them like I did, as the filling went flying out onto the table. It’s a nice feeling to put the whole thing in your mouth and feel the melted filling ooze out.
Cocktails with names like Dirty, Waif and Violin are as innovative as the food, with flavours like orange blossom, neroli and rose. Dining out doesn’t much more exciting than this.