It almost pains me to write this, as I know that part of what makes the restaurant I’m going to tell you about so great, is its feeling of exclusivity.  Everyone loves feeling like they have stumbled across something secret and special.  A little bolt hole that they don’t have to share with the unwashed hordes.

I very much doubt that the unwashed hordes have yet stumbled across this site, so I can give away this secret with some confidence.  Just round the corner from our flat is Hackney City Farm. We found it earlier this year when visiting Columbia Road Flower Market, and we instantly found our inner children; petting donkeys and giggling at enormous snoring pigs.

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I saw then that the farm had a cafe on weekends, and a restaurant on Thursday evenings.

On Paul’s sister recommendation (and I will be forever grateful to her for bringing it into my life) we’ve been back for breakfast several times.  Meaty sausages, rashers of bacon so thick they could almost be gammon steaks and perfect scrambled eggs help fight off lingering hangovers like nothing else.  I have been waiting for the opportunity to try the restaurant and when my mum came for supper last Thursday and I had the perfect excuse to go.

I booked a table, ringing and sending an email in my keenness.  The weekend cafe was transformed with lanterns and candles.  The menu was simple, just a couple of choices for starters and mains, with a pasta course that came in large or small.  We shared the two starters between the three of us.  We fought with our polite forks over beetroot salad, cheese, cold meats and pickles;  I could have happily had it all to myself (for me happiness and greediness are never far apart).

When we eat out the three of us scan menus for meals that will fill us up, as well as being delicious.  We agree that still being hungry after eating out is horrible. So, we all ordered the large pasta course. Tagliatelle was mixed with shredded, slow roasted pork shoulder and a reduced winey sauce. I’ve never had pork with pasta except the standard spag bol.  This was so delectable, you couldn’t rush it, forking it in quickly lost all of its rich complexity.  Instead we slowly spooned it in, our faces never far from the plate, all groaning with happy porky pasta induced pleasure.  (I am sure carbs release happy hormones.) It was BYOB, so Paul and I washed it down with a lovely (and cheap) bottle of red from the off license over the road. We then trundled home, which thankfully was just round the corner.

Not far off what we looked like after our pasta fix...

Percy tasted delicious