14E and 14D Market Row (Entrance from Coldharbour Lane)
This is a relatively new restaurant, whose website says it is in Brixton Village but it isn’t. It’s in Market Row. The map is also confusing as the links for the Tooting Market outlet lead you to Brixton and vice versa. They are not very wordy on their website but they describe themselves as a modern British seafood restaurant and add “innovative”, fish “delivered fresh daily from St Ives” and meat sourced locally. They are No. 8 in the Timeout top 20 sea food restaurants – but this is the Tooting outlet. The Brixton branch has a connected, but separate bar with cocktails that you enter through a different door. We will tell you more later. Decor is darkish with candles and small tables for two, but they were also setting up for a large party. We missed that as we went very early on a Friday.
The menu varies and they offer everything on their QR code menu but the internet was very slow so we opted for a paper one. Most dishes are expensive, so be prepared to share – they do expect that. Fish of course pervades the menu (oysters, battered fish, salmon, squid, prawns and crab) but they also have some vegetables and a surf and turf option. We ordered a crab bun (tempura soft shell crab, pickled carrot, kohlrabi, spiced mayo and oyster dressing), and creamed mussels (with bacon, cider, thyme and cream) and a portion of chips.
The crab bun arrived first, cut in half so it wasn’t just easy to eat but with an expectation of sharing. We wolfed it down. The chips were triple-cooked and seasoned with vinegar salt (who knew?), so we could eat them with the bun or later for dipping into the cream sauce of the mussels. A hearty bowl of mussels they were too and at the end of the meal we had no room for dessert.
Before eating we glanced at the cocktails and couldn’t resist the Seadog Martini (“dry Tarquins martini, stirred with Vermouth & complimented with an oyster and citrus”) – dirty with an extra canape. It came with lots of theatre, including dry ice. We also chose a Spiced Pineapple Margarita (A Classic margarita, based on El Tequiuleno Blanco plus a pineapple reduction and a piece of dried pineapple that was pretty but inedible) again lots of theatre, and an interesting way to start a meal.
The bill came to £68.06 but £26.00 was the cost of the cocktails. It is a bit steep but without alcohol that is a large reduction and if you work for the NHS you get 15% off. They also have specials every day that are cheaper. The food was really good and we will definitely be putting this on our return soon list.