We don’t expect elaborate things from the BOTTLES weekend brunch. Wine bars — particularly dainty ones fitted into one of the small units on the edge of Old Spitalfields Market — tend to keep it pared-back on the food front. Charcuterie and cheeseboards, bread and oil, terrine. The sort of low-key, pre-prepped stuff that soaks up alcohol without needing kitchen space.

The brunch menu at BOTTLES — a collaboration with Italian kitchen Sood Family — looks a bit more ambitious than that, but not enormously. It’s a restrained, three-dish job: on the day we visit that’s a fried egg sandwich, or tortilla with salad, or poached eggs on avocado toast.

Restrained in length, but not remotely when it comes to the dishes themselves. We can’t quite cover the entire menu between us. But boy do we ogle the fried egg sandwich arriving for other brunchers. We decide there’s almost no chance a breakfast butty scattered with sweet friggitelli peppers and with the bacon swapped out for fat-crisped guanciale, isn’t going to be as magnificent as it looks (which is very).

And our poached eggs are a thing of lavish, off-beat beauty; sourdough toast topped with avocado, smoked salmon, eggs and a thick blanket of seaweed and orange hollandaise. We go from hollandaise-sceptic to fanatic in a matter of heartbeats, the zestiness-umami marriage turning the brunch standard into something unfamiliar and lovely. Equally lovely is Sood’s no-waste policy, everything made fresh every day, every unused scrap reborn into sauces, stocks, pasta stuffings.

As another Italian known for turning out works of art claimed, “Art lives from constraints and dies from freedom”. That might explain why the alchemy of this small space, and the restrictions imposed by Sood Family’s rigidly zero-waste, hyperfresh, hyperseasonal approach is leading to such a masterpiece of a brunch dish.

BOTTLES, Spitalfields Market, E1 6AA.

from Londonist https://ift.tt/2Q8peiF