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Hill & Szrok
November 11, 2014
A butcher, a baker, a candlestick…shop. Broadway Market has it all. However, what it didn’t have until this March was a traditional British butcher shop that turned into a restaurant at night. Enter, Hill & Szrok.
Housed in an old butcher’s, which sits in front of the original slaughterhouse for the market, Hill & Szrok stays true to its East End roots whilst embracing the new trends of London Fields. The space is complete with tiled walls, a wood and brass window fridge, and a marble meat counter, yet it is given a contemporary twist such as amusing artwork of an animal carcass reclining on a chaise lounge, and the central marble worktop being transformed into a kitchen island dining table with guests’ feet dangling next to the fridges their dinners are kept in.
The food itself is obviously largely meat: Black pudding, chicken hearts, roast beef, pork chops, steaks, ribs and all manner of other cuts. There are attractive, if not scarce, vegetarian options such as Grilled Aubergine with garlic, almonds and Parmesan, however be warned, Chef Alex Szrok admits to having already turned two vegetarians who have dined with him, and once we tasted the food, it was not hard to see why.
We started with the Blood pudding with oven roasted cherry tomatoes on crisp white toast, as well as the Chicken hearts in garlic butter and breadcrumbs – both absolute bargains at £4 and £5 respectively. The pudding was fantastically flavoursome and crumbly. The seasoning was perfect and the tomatoes added a freshness whilst complimenting the strong tastes at work. The chicken hearts were wonderfully cooked, remaining tender and succulent under the fresh breadcrumbs. The sauce was reminiscent of Escargots à la Bourguignonne and we were offered bread to mop up the dripping remnants.
For our mains we opted for the Ribeye Steak with Watercress & Pear Salad, and the Sunday Roast Beef, which came with a fluffy Yorkshire pudding, large crispy potatoes and two hefty slices of medium-cooked beef, all dressed in a light gravy and accompanied with charred cauliflower and carrots. The roast was hearty and homey as Alex aims to replicate “the best roast” which is for him his mum’s but the Ribeye was a standout. Unsurprisingly, the quality of the meat was unparalleled, coming from 5 farms between Kent, Sussex and Brighton to ensure that everything is free range, slow-grown and grass-fed. We were also very fond of how we were not asked how we wanted it cooked – it came medium. The salad with its light vinaigrette and surprisingly ripe pears worked beautifully next to the beef with its mustard side dressing.
Hill & Szrok is a fantastic addition to the bustling Broadway Market scene. It is simple, down-to-earth, quality food served in a quirky environment by people who really know what they are doing. In the lead up to Christmas, diners are in for even more of a treat with the cookshop’s butcher, Richardson Hill, and its chef, Alex Szrok, inviting a few of their industry friends along to utilise the space each Sunday and create their own menus ranging from offal feasts to Spanish Sundays (more details below).
Name: Offal Sundays
Chef: Johnny C
Info: Johny C serves up his favourite Italian offal dishes.
Name: Sunday Lunch with Tutto Wines & Chef Tim Spedding
Chef: Tim Spedding
Info: Alex and Damiano from Tutto Wines work with artisan winemakers across Italy who have a respect for the grape, land and regional winemaking traditions and supply Hill & Szrok as well as many of London’s top restaurants. This time they have teamed up with their friend and chef Tim Spedding to put together the sort of Sunday lunch they like to indulge in.
As well as being the sous chef at Michelin starred restaurant The Clove Club, Tim is also a lover of real wine so expect a menu that speaks of autumn and the sort of simple, rustic and pure wines that makes so much sense on a Sunday afternoon.
Chef: James Ramsden
Info: The menu will be as following.
Ox heart tartare with gochujang and pickled kohlrabi
Wood-ash beef carpaccio, smoked olive oil, parmesan
Blood sausage with squid, chimichurri and pumpkin seed
Roast potatoes with tobiko, creme fraiche and shallot
Late autumn salad
Peanut, rosemary and olive oil chocolate cake, bourbon ice cream, smoked almond brittle
Chef: Mila & Joe
Info: Mila & Joe brings you an experience of what a Sunday in Spain is all about: Vermouth to nurse the Saturday night blues away, beers to refresh, wines to savour, all with the following.
Cocido (a Spanish traditional stew with chickpeas, chorizo, steak, ham, chicken, and a delicious soup)
Chuletas (Succulent lamb chops off the bone)
Mojo Picon Potatoes (Salted baby potato’s with Canary Island spicy sauce)
Pepitos (Fantastic steak sandwiches with a variety of fillings)
All as Tapas, quick, conversational, and above all,authentic Spanish recipes.
All meats supplied by our hosts the lovely Hill and Szrok Butchers.
Vicky Ilankovan – Lifestyle Editor