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Five Restaurants to Try This Weekend

Including a Thai cafe in Brixton, an Italo-British restaurant in Southwark and a Sunday roast residency in Homerton

Kaosarn/Facebook

KaoSarn

A Brixton Market institution since 2011, KaoSarn offers precious little of the hardwood elegance you’d find at Smoking Goat, or the regional Thai-Burmese-Yunanese-Lao fusion of Kiln. Nor does it offer the polish and refinement of the beauteous Supawan. What it does sell, with great efficiency and a minimum of fuss, is Thai cafe classics served at a speed that belies the care that has gone into them. Fish cakes have an authentically bouncy texture and thrum with makrut lime leaf; moo ping (grilled pork skewers) come with a roasted chilli dipping sauce that wouldn’t look out of place at Som Saa. The beef massaman — its meat slow-cooked in coconut milk to the point of total collapse — is probably one of the best examples of this classic dish in the capital; the som tam undoubtedly is. Note: it’s both BYO and cash-only; it accepts reservations for tables of six or more. Given the forecast for this weekend, outside seating may finally appeal again — close your eyes hard enough amongst the hustle and bustle and you could almost be on the most infamous road in Bangkok. —George Reynolds
Brixton Village and Market Row Markets, 96 Coldharbour Lane, SW9 8PR

The Food & Social Club @ The Gun

In a tiny, leafy room on the second floor of a Homerton pub, The Food & Social Club — run by chef Andy Evans and partner Julya — has taken up residency. It’s a thoughtful menu with dishes designed to be shared and is split into four sections: Meat, fish, vegetarian and dessert, with roasts on Sundays. The dishes are all about detail, even in their comfortness — from the slightly aniseed-y carrots on the Sunday roasts, to the delicately pressed lamb breast dish on the dinner menu. —Anna Sulan Masing
235 Well Street, Homerton E9 6RG

Legs

Irreverent and thrilling small plate cookery paired with natural/biodynamic/ooh funky label wine from an open kitchen in a vibey environment somewhere in Lower Clapton staffed predominantly by peppy Antipodeans and with a sideline in winemaker collaborations? Get those eye roll emojis in, haters! Or, act like a sensible, grounded adult, get along to the restaurant and revel in all of the above. There’s a bonus weekend brunch menu that includes a serious Vergano spritz to wash down toast plates that might be as direct as an anchovy wrapped in a sage leaf or as complex as an assembly of orange, walnut, fennel, endive and smoked ricotta. This is a place of generosity, wit, and deliciousness: don’t skimp. —James Hansen
120-122 Morning Lane, E9 6LH

Humble Grape

In the age of the humblebrag, humility gets a bad rap. But the real deal — a modesty of approach, a disinterest in wheel-reinvention for its own sake — can be a wonderful thing. And it’s very much in evidence at Islington’s Humble Grape. It has 400 wines on its list (including some beauties by the glass, like a 2011 Castelares Colheita Tinto; think port minus the fortification) but it doesn’t pipe them to the table and bore the pants off everyone present — and the same goes for the cooking. Ignore the menu’s smattering of embarrassing uncle-jokes and focus on lick-the-plate-clean dishes like pigeon breast with creamy polenta and crispy leeks, and quince crumble with cinnamon ice cream. At the end of the day it’s just food people want to eat, served in a way that makes them want to eat it again — but what a #blessed relief it is to find that. —Emma Hughes
11-13 Theberton Street, N1 0QY

Lupins

Set at the back of Southwark’s Flat Iron Square food hall, Lupins wears its small plates of seasonal food with a fresh, light and sunny disposition. There’s a cute (read: tightly packed) dining room upstairs. But ones and twos will enjoy sitting at the kitchen counter on the ground floor, watching the best of the month’s harvest being given the Italo-British-wherever’s-flavourful treatment. Think pigeon wellingtons, Keralan-spiced quail and Jersey Royals, and tangles of fried spring onions with a twisted aiolli (so probably wild garlicky right now). —Ed Smith
66 Union Street, SE1 1SG

som saa

43A Commercial Street, , England E1 6BD 020 7324 7790 Visit Website

Milk

18-20 Bedford Hill, , England SW12 9RG 020 8772 9085 Visit Website

Spring

Lancaster Place, , England WC2R 1LA 020 3011 0115 Visit Website

Legs

120 Morning Lane London E9 6LH, London, 440203 441 8765 Visit Website

Texture

34 Portman Street, London, W1H 7BY Visit Website

Humble Grape

2 Battersea Rise, , England SW11 1ED 020 3620 2202 Visit Website

Kiln

58 Brewer Street, , England W1F 9TL Visit Website

Brixton Market

16B Electric Avenue, , England SW9 8JX 020 7274 2990 Visit Website

The Food & Social Club @ The Gun

235 Well Street, Homerton , London, E9 6RG Visit Website

Kaosarn

110 Saint John's Hill, , England SW11 1SJ 020 7223 7888 Visit Website

Smoking Goat

64 Shoreditch High Street, London, E1 6JJ

Lamb

94 Lamb's Conduit Street, , England WC1N 3LZ 020 7405 0713 Visit Website

Supawan

38 Caledonian Road, London, N1 9DT Visit Website

Lupins

66 Union Street , London, SE1 1SG Visit Website

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