The Gramaphone is a great find. It’s on Commercial Street about 5 mins along the road from the Truman Brewery. Upstairs, there’s a bar with very friendly staff and great wine (cheap at around £13-15 a bottle), which serves good Thai food during weeknights and is quiet enough you can get a seat and have a natter. Last Thursday, I was there with my friend Pip and had yummy dumplings and spring rolls as a bar snack.
On Fridays, there’s various DJs playing good tunes – I’m afraid last time I was in on a Friday, its all rather hazy thanks to the 2 for 1 before 7pm offer at Scarlett Dot in Spitalfields market, but I think it was hip hop, there were tons of people there and everyone was having a good old dance. Very relaxed atmosphere – I seem to recall falling over a sofa, which they were fine with. Downstairs, there’s a club where I ended up after The Luxe two weeks ago – they have various DJs on during the week and weekend and club nights like Electrotherapy, where you listen to house, dress up in neon and swap clothes, apparently. So, weeknights for nice thai and chat, weekends for crazy DJ rave up with someone else’s clothes on.
Got rather smashed with my friend Max at the Luxe last night. Its the baby of John Torode (him off Masterchef and of Smiths of Smithfields fame) and the first time we went, the man himself showed us to our table and brought our drinks which I thought was a great touch. As a massive Masterchef fan, I really wanted to chat to him about it, but all I managed was to ask him where the toilet was… On Sunday its a fantastic place for brunch inside or outside – great atmosphere, interesting menu, great spicy bloody mary. We had a chicken salad which was yummy and whitebait which were lovely and crispy and served with lemon mayo. You could never eat the amount that you get – great value too. Last night it changed somewhat – it was more of the City crowd and really noisy. Good music though and a good drinks list. Started with an amazing raspberry martini, then went on to wine, and finally prosecco, whoops. The bar snacks – chicken legs, falafel, whitebait and chips – were delicious and really good value at around £4 a pop. If you can bear the city crowd, then it is highly recommended.
Went to this gorgeous little Thai place by the Truman Brewery, opposite Spitalfields market, with my friends Lottie and Alice. Started with salt and pepper squid and prawns which showed a really light touch, and followed with stir fry duck and vegetables and rice. Good honest cooking and excellent service which is a cut above most thai places I’ve been to. Shared bench tables, but actually feels very intimate even though you’re sharing with other people. Highly recommended!
UPDATE: Rosa’s opens in Soho on Thursday 11 March 2010. I can’t make it – gah – but if it’s as good as the Spitalfields version then I’m sure it will soon become a favourite for good value and delicious food in central London!