The Buxton sets the standard for high end pubs in London. At first, it feels more like an Italian bistro than a Brick Lane pub.
This comes from the building which looks like it should be sitting in a grand piazza, the marble countertops inside, the interiors covered in all kinds of mix matched wood, and the terraced space with vines and chalk boards dotted about. But The Buxton is firmly rooted in all things modern, taking influences from all over Europe.
And you only need to check the menu for that. They only have about three different starters and mains (plus a bunch of wicked bar snacks). These change regularly as there is a big focus on seasonal, locally sourced produce. We love seeing more and more restaurants taking this ethos and running with it!
We happened to pop down during tomato season, so got a giant bowl of mixed heritage tomatoes mixed up in a super simple salad with some basil, oil and capers. Here, the heroes were the colourful tomatoes. There’s absolutely no reason to mess with them, by adding too much.
But not everything is so simple. If you’re wanting to treat yourself to something a little more exciting, then you’re sorted there too. We tucked into a spectacular hake dish. This was served in a creamy dill sauce, with mussels and chunk of grilled hispi cabbage (hispi cabbage is so hot right now).
This dish did have a lot going on, but it all came together quite effortlessly. Clearly, the chefs here can do it all – even from their tiny little open kitchen by the bar.
They even manage to cater to a bunch of different dietary requirements, even with such a short menu. Vegans and gluten intolerant folks will be well taken care of.
But the fun doesn’t end at the food. It doesn’t even start there, to be honest. Because this is a classy pub and bar after all. Drinks are of the upmost important to these guys. Aperitivos bring that European spirit into The Buxton. These ‘starters’ of the drinking experience, come in the form of different kinds of vermouths (which are also very on trend these days). They are a great way to kick off an evening of treats, or be the only reason why you come here. It’s up to you!
But wines are what these guys really excel at. Most reign from Italy, France and Spain – with a few from the new world too. Plus, most, if not all, are natural wines. This means that some may be a bit funky. But it also means each will be unique and special. No basic cab savs or chardonnays here. Either grab a few bottles for the occasion or let the really friendly and knowledgeable waiters give you a cheeky wine pairing.
This isn’t something they advertise on the menu but is really worth it for any true wine lover.
Now, knowing that The Buxton is run by the same team who own The Culpeper in Spitalfields, we were expecting a lot. And absolutely nothing disappointed.
They carried on the same ethos of sourcing produce (even having their own rooftop full of herbs and veg) and carried the same high end yet still cool and relaxed vibe over to Brick Lane too.
But The Buxton is noticeably smaller. This is a huge win. You get a more intimate experience here. And there is clearly a strong community connection. Regulars pop in and out throughout the day and night, with staff and customers alike knowing one another’s names.
It might sound cheesy, but this is special. And it comes from the pairing of superb service with top-notch food and drink offerings. When we can’t get a seat up at The Culpeper’s rooftop, we’ll surely be heading here!