Test Drives

08 frogTruffled cheese doughnuts covered in parmesan

What can you tell me about The Frog?

This is the new restaurant from young chef Adam Handling, who has been a big hit in while working in The Caxton Grill at The St Ermin's Hotel. Many have been singing his praises there, but he's been perhaps less visible working in such a traditional location. So this sees him coming out of the shadows for his first fully solo venture in Shoreditch.

He was fine dining before - is this the same?

While the food was of VERY high quality (more of that in a bit) this is way more Shoreditch than St James. The room is pretty stripped back with concrete floors and a pretty banging soundtrack.

02 frogBeetroot, Beetroot and more Beetroot

Where is it?

It's behind The Old Truman Brewery, more or less opposite DF Mexico. The closest stations are either Liverpool Street or Shoreditch High Street.

Where should we meet for a drink first?

There are all manner of drinking holes nearby - we stopped off at the new bar in St John Bread and Wine ourselves or you might want to try nearby Blixen. But there's also a big section at the front of The Frog and an alfresco terrace where you can grab a drink.

If you do come to the bar, there are snacks available too. So it may be worth popping by to just get a flavour of the food before you book in for a full meal.

07 frogSalmon, limestone potato, tarragon

Where should we sit?

We think the best seats are probably the ones by the front window, so grab those if you can.

Tasting menu or a la carte?

Both are available here, but we'd say it's worth going for the tasting menu if you have the time. It starts at £45 per person (for four snacks and five dishes and is very good value, in our opinion.

04 frogThe AMAZING bread with chicken butter.

Is there anything we shouldn't miss from the menu?

There is one very obvious thing that you shouldn't leave without trying, and that's the bread with chicken butter. Chicken butter is everything we ever dreamed of. If we had to compare it to something, we'd say there was a slight chicken flavoured crisps edge to it, but we mean that in the best of ways.

One of Adam Handling's signatures is also the "Beetroot, Beetroot and more beetroot" - available as a snack here. If you're a fan of the beet, then definitely get it.

06 frogLamb, artichoke, black garlic

Any other highlights?

It was a menu quite full of highlights if we're being candid here. We've never tried his food before, and could see quite quickly how he's built such a vocal fanbase over the past few years. Particular high spots were:

  • The lamb, artichoke and black garlic - essentially bringing together all the things we love.
  • The cheese doughnuts - stuffed cheese doughnuts covered in parmesan served as the cheese course. There is a £4 surcharge for this, but it's well worth it.
  • And we wouldn't normally highlight a pre-dessert - but the spearmint, milk chocolate and frozen aero was a textbook way of making that course more interesting.

If you're a lover of tiramisu you'll also want to get their nitro version featuring nitrogen frozen chocolate over the rest of the dessert. Essentially a theatrical deconstructed dessert. It has a £5 supplement too - but if you can't stretch to that, the yuzu, white chocolate and milk ice cream was very good.

What about drinks?

There's a big focus on beer on the menu - with a whole page featuring 20+ options (and a beer-pairing option is available). Cocktails are good at around £8-9 (the signature green chef's gin and tonic is a highlight) while wine starts around the £22 mark for a bottle.

11 frogSpearmint, milk chocolate, aero

Overall?

The Shoreditch vibes of the restaurant balance some great skills in the kitchen at The Frog. If you haven't tried Handling's food yet, it's an easy recommendation, particularly at this price.

Hot Dinners were invited to The Frog. Prices are correct at the time of writing. 

The Frog is at Ely's Yard, Old Truman Brewery, 2 Hanbury St, London E1 6QR. Read more about the Frog.

 

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