SquareMeal Review of
The Whitechapel Refectory
The perennially interesting art gallery gets its café-bar right, thanks to Luke Wilson and Cameron Emirali (the chaps behind 10 Greek Street and 8 Hoxton Square). In 1920s art deco surroundings with tightly packed tables, a daily changing menu is served from 10.30am to 6pm: pastries, filled baps, salads and small plates at pleasing prices. We’re drawn to sweet-potato soup; Provençal-style mutton stew; pillowy chorizo and potato tortilla; and smoked-trout, horseradish and watercress sandwich. On Thursday and Friday, the space morphs into cool hook-up After Hours (open until 11pm), when the focus shifts to charcuterie, cheeses and wine – the latter a compelling mix of classics and uncommon bottles such as Huber Zweigelt rosé, a summery, grassy Austrian. Cult London craft ales also make an appearance (Walthamstow’s Wild Card among them) as does Hawkes Urban Orchard cider, made in Forest Gate by blending rural apples with those from East End gardens.