In East London, cool wine bars are as common as off-licenses. The Laughing Heart is beloved by local creative and meedja types not only for its natural wines, eccentric food (everything from Vietnamese-style steamed mussels to wild mushroom tagliatelle), and friendly rottweiler Hugo, but also for excellent vibes, especially on such a dead stretch of Hackney Road. It’s open until 3am on some nights, and they’ll do you cocktails in the basement if you ask nicely. It’s a good spot if you’re local to the neighbourhood and want an extended hang, or somewhere to drink and grab a snack in the wee hours.
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Jolene is a bakery, café, and restaurant on Newington Green serving very nice, very grainy, very wholesome breakfast, lunch and (on some days) dinner.
Cornerstone is a classy but casual seafood restaurant in Hackney Wick. It’s a place that’s worth shelling out for, if only once.
My Neighbours The Dumplings
My Neighbours The Dumplings in Clapton is a dim sum parlour done East London stye. There’s a great bar and Chinese dishes, Totoro optional.
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Top Cuvée is a wine bar and restaurant in Highbury that gets busy on match days but is an otherwise great spot for a drink or a low key date night.
Not only is Noble Rot one of London’s best wine bars, it’s one of London’s best restaurants. Hit it for drinks and dinner, or just drinks and drinks.
P Franco is a Clapton wine shop that hosts guest chefs who serve stunning small plates to neighbourhood regulars. You want to be a regular.
Suggested by our writers
Morito Hackney Road
The Spanish small plates, the wine and the mood lighting makes you want to be cool enough to hang out at Morito, Hackney Road, all the time.
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