Chef Mark Jarvis’s pint-sized and gloriously understated restaurant epitomises the capital’s ‘bistronomy’ movement – a pared-back, unpretentious affair where exceptional modern British cooking does all the talking and prices are never greedy.
Buried away on a slightly tawdry street near Hatton Garden (clue: look for the parked Rollers and Bentleys), the bijou interior is almost brutalist in its approach – think grey-beige walls, a polished concrete floor and iron-framed, bare-wood furniture. The room only holds a dozen or so tables, which means that the no-choice seven-course tasting menu arrives at a decent pace (there’s also a three-course carte at lunchtime).
Right out of the traps, we were blown away. Little bites of creamy dressed crab with red pepper granita boded well, but the first dish of thinly sliced, raw scallops with earthy dollops of chopped shiitake mushroom and preserved ginger reduced our table to awed silence.
After that, the standard rarely dropped as one starry creation preceded another: a “mouth-coating” bowl of English peas bound in egg yolk and black-garlic purée with a topping of whey foam; a seared slab of pink trout in an umami-loaded shellfish and seaweed broth with roasted baby summer vegetables; an almond ice cream with skinned almonds, dehydrated cherries and cherry compote – each dish as pretty as the proverbial picture.
Details such as the soft home-baked sourdough with whipped butter are in keeping with the restaurant’s high aspirations, and there are some fine cheeses too. To drink, a list of mainly biodynamic wines is loaded with left-field surprises, although the sommelier is equally happy to throw in beer and cider pairings – a gesture that typifies Anglo’s uncomplicated, accessible and forward-thinking approach.