Monday, 11 May 2009

Little Georgia

24/05/09
Beautiful hot Sunday morning, just as well I decided to stay inside
Overly strong and indeterminate cup of black coffee. I didn't sleep till 3AM this morning I suppose drinking this is like a couple of slaps on the face- fortuitous bliss no less.
Fry-up with a twist. Georgian sausages, bacon, beans and scrambled eggs with both white and brown toasts. Like the first encounter there's a degree of spiciness in the cooking; the beans are a tad like chili sin carne and the sausages taste not too dissimilar to faggots. Lovely breakfast. £7 for coffee and food.

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An achingly gorgeous place you wouldn’t want to share with the rest of the world


One day someone’s going to get a contract out on me for revealing his or hers best kept secret. Little Georgia in Hackney is such a place.

The location of the place between Hackney Road and Broadway Market is near promenadelust. I don’t profess to know much about this place except that I have to walk past it every weekend to allay my caffeine fix at Climpson. Like the latter, come rain or shine Little Georgia is always well patronised by its regulars. I’ve always, well at least initially anyway, perceived the place as an extension to someone’s else’s kitchen and dining room; hence the reluctance to saunter in and proclaim hail! The opportunity to pop in for lunch was aided by my lunch date, D.

The dining room is best described as endearing, I love the ‘lived-in’ drabness of it. Props like a wind–up gramophone and an early film projector simply make your MP3 player somewhat inappropriate in here. This time-stood-still approach to the ambience also applies to the service. The people who work here (the whole place quite obviously echoes a family run establishment) are friendly enough but the service from taking orders to the food arriving on the table is snail-pace slow. If the word patience doesn’t mean anything to you, then this place is best avoided.

Little Georgia is effectively a place that offers all day breakfasts that’s more discerning and I dare say healthier than the usual greasy spoon fare. With the disastrous Central Asian experience at Dastarkhan still niggling, I was a trifle apprehensive about the Caucasus’ take on all things foodie. Thankfully the fear was short-lived.

The short and concise lunch menu convinced me that the Georgians (well this place at least) are rather keen on their salads. D chose her dish of the day from the board and I requested to the chap who waited on us to bring us some dishes that Ms Melua* would be proud of.

Fresh apple and carrot juice £2.50
I'm no health food junkie and this was certainly disgusting!

D’s chicken stew and trimmings.
This tasted surprisingly spicy, not too sure whether it was paprika or chilli pepper that made it so. Overall it was perfectly edible, well seasoned and assuredly home cooked. £7.50

The Little Georgia salad with chicken roulade.
This is a generous platter, personally I felt it was more than enough for one person. Once again spiciness was detected in the carrot salad and the beetroot salad confused us a bit; the intense sweetness of it evoked caramelised onions instead. Russian salad is Russian salad- yawn! Chicken tasted pretty decent. This dish represented excellent value at £7.

Pelmeni.
Pork and beef ravioli served with fresh mint yoghurt. Confusingly this dish according to Wiki is Russian and there is a Georgian equivalent called Khinkali. I don’t think it matters, despite the bland looks (a prerequisite of most dumplings) I was rather enthralled by it. The filling was well seasoned and pretty much delicious. £4.50 for this hearty bowl of no nonsense eating.

Little Georgia is an absolute delight of a place. For a Notting Hillbilly the discovery of this place has made me even more envious of the folks living in this part of E2. Highly recommended, just don’t all turn up at once!

NB I actually forgot to ask D what she thought of the place, apologies!

*She’s is very pretty but by enlarge her songs rather like my aversion to apricots make me violently ill!


87 Goldsmiths Row
Bethnal Green
London E2 8QR

9 comments:

Mark Ngui said...

Great review. I first read about this when Lily Allen celebrated her birthday here a couple of years ago.

eatmynels said...

i love this place.. the breakfast beans are top dollar - beet and other veg mixed with hearty beans make for a edible alternative to heinz... you must return to try!

Lizzie said...

I can't say I've ever had Georgian food before, so thanks for sharing the secret!

mymaterialvoid said...

hey! i hope you waved to me in my flat - maybe I cycled by on my bee-cee-clop and waved!

And yes, I am now taking a contract out on you for revealing my little secret, i reckon I could find someone in the immediate area...actually with my new job situation - i could do it myself!

glad you enjoyed it :)

bellaphon said...

Mark- Oh no the mere mention of Lily Allen might put me off altogether!

eatmynels- Beans...heed taken.

Lizzie- You're welcome.

MMV- LOL! If you see me here next, you can have my Russian salad.

Little Miss Random said...

I thought Little Georgia was nice and quaint. That being said, I felt service was quite slow, but my lunch hours are usually very short anyway, so I'm not used to having meals like they do on the continent!

I really liked the beetroot. Yum!

Thanks again for the invitation and for letting me steal so much of your lunch!

bellaphon said...

LMR/D- Thanks for your company.

gawain said...

The dumplings shown are indeed pelmeni; kinkhali are a different shape, have thicker pasta and have a different meaty filling. Not to be confused with either Kazakh or Turkish manty (which are different to each other....)

bellaphon said...

gawain, Sir- I'm hereby indebted to you and thoroughly clarified. Thank you for stopping by.