Typing Room
Bethnal Green, London

Typing Room in Bethnal Green, chef - Lee Westcott

When I met Lee Westcott at Wilderness Festival this year, he was so casual and unbelievably modest about his ‘little restaurant’ in the heart of Bethnal Green, that I thought I might have misunderstood. Or maybe I’d just had too many rums. (There had been much rum that night.) (Is the plural of rum, rums? Much rum.)

I’d heard of Typing Room, LM and I had been dying to go there since it opened, so when Lee was surprised that I’d heard of it, I had to wallop him with a breadstick (we were in the dining hall. I don’t carry breadsticks around with me) and tell him that he was a silly sausage.  Of course I’d heard of it. And of course I’d heard of him – he’s the chap from Typing Room.

That, and I’d also seen him on the Saturday Kitchen Omelette Challenge.

Typing Room in Bethnal Green, chef - Lee Westcott

A warm and crusty Rye IPA sourdough, served with whipped marmite butter and pearl barley

Typing Room in Bethnal Green, chef - Lee Westcott

MARMITE BUTTER – I could have eaten three courses of this alone and gone home happy.

Typing Room in Bethnal Green, chef - Lee Westcott

He said “COME”. I said “OK”.  So one evening after I’d had my hair chopped at Drama Parlour, it was a hop skip and a scuffle across the road to Typing Room, where I met LM for dinner.

Lee Westcott is head chef at this Jason Atherton restaurant, situated in the Town Hall Hotel, which was built in 1910. The restaurant takes its name from the building’s original typing room in which all communications from the mayoral, council and judicial system were put to ink.

Typing Room in Bethnal Green, chef - Lee Westcott

The space itself is so easy going and relaxed, with a scandi-English feel… Scandlish. (No, it’s not a thing.) The open kitchen gives you the feeling that you’ve been invited to dinner round at Lee’s and the laid back environment, charming waiting staff and candlelit cosiness instantly put you at ease. I was very happy indeed, and once I’d had half of the loaf of glorious warm sourdough, smeared with lashings of marmite butter, I was near on delirious.

Typing Room in Bethnal Green, chef - Lee Westcott

Onion bhaji, yoghurt & mango chutney

You can choose a five or seven course menu… and we went for the seven. Because once you’re there, you realise that it won’t be long before EVERYONE knows how amazing the place is… and the chances of being able to get a table again any time soon are fast diminishing…

Typing Room in Bethnal Green, chef - Lee Westcott

Pig’s head and smoked apple

The first course were ‘snacks’, consisting of an onion bhaji with yoghurt & mango chutney,  crispy fish skin with drops of smoked cod, oyster and dill and pig’s head & smoked apple.

Typing Room in Bethnal Green, chef - Lee Westcott

Crispy fish skin, smoked cod, oyster & dill

It became immediately apparent that we were in the hands of someone brilliant. Everything we saw that popped out of that kitchen looked absolutely exquisite, and undeniably pretty. The menu at Typing room is creative, exciting and forever evolving… and we were in for a total treat.

Scattered fresh flowers, scorched elements, burnt edges, piped purees…  gorgeous little details were everywhere… I am not a food critic, and by that I mean my palette is not highly advanced and I couldn’t possibly say whether a dish was right or wrong or how to improve anything… but I DO know when something is delicious, when something is beautiful and when something is exceptional.

And every single course at Typing Room was all these things….

Typing Room in Bethnal Green, chef - Lee Westcott

Celeriac, pear, fermented mushrooms & hazelnut

Typing Room in Bethnal Green, chef - Lee Westcott

Typing Room in Bethnal Green, chef - Lee Westcott

Scallop, clementine, chestnut & caesar mushroom

Typing Room in Bethnal Green, chef - Lee Westcott

Typing Room in Bethnal Green, chef - Lee Westcott

A cosy fire place adds to the living room feel…

Typing Room in Bethnal Green, chef - Lee Westcott

Yeasted cauliflower, raisins, capers & mint

Typing Room in Bethnal Green, chef - Lee Westcott

Turbot, jerusalem artichoke, walnut & miyagawa

Typing Room in Bethnal Green, chef - Lee Westcott

Typing Room in Bethnal Green, chef - Lee Westcott

Typing Room in Bethnal Green, chef - Lee Westcott

Roe deer, beetroot, cabbage & blackberries

And for dessert, we had sheep’s yoghurt, apple & dill… which I absolutely loved. So light and refreshing… and blimmin clever too. Look how thin the meringue is!

Sheep's yoghurt, apple & dill - Typing Room

Sheep’s yoghurt, apple & dill

Typing Room in Bethnal Green, chef - Lee Westcott

And, even though we had no morsel of space left in our tummies, we couldn’t help ourselves when faced with these after dinner treats…

Typing Room in Bethnal Green, chef - Lee Westcott

Typing Room in Bethnal Green, chef - Lee Westcott

This is such a special place to go for dinner – the 7 course tasting menu is £75 per person, for 5 courses it’s £60, or if you fancy popping in for a 3 course lunch it will set you back just £29, which I think is excellent value.

Lee, you knocked our socks off.

(And I have got some VERY jazzy socks.)

Poppy Loves - a London Lifestyle Blog

Typing Room
Town Hall Hotel
Patriot Square, London E2 9NF

This post was shot on my LEICA D-LUX – dinky but dynamic ;)

 

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5 thoughts on “Typing Room
Bethnal Green, London

  1. No wonder you had seven courses! I think I would have been down the chippie after, the portions look tiny.

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