The Most Beautiful Restaurant in Dalston? I Ventured East To Angelina

Fusion food; gorgeous interiors; quirky concepts… you can’t bat an eyelid without a restaurant popping up that boats at least one of these attributes. But all three? That’s where Angelina comes in. This Dalston restaurant centres on Japanese cuisine with Italian ingredients and I had to get a taste.

Underestimating just how stunning this east London hideaway would be, I was stunned to find such a gorgeous space. Even from outside, huge windows gave a glimpse of the open kitchen where lanterns hung above, and leafy plants dotted around candlelit tables.

A joint venture between Joshua Owens-Baigler (ex-River Café) and chef Daniele Ceforo of Bocca di Lupo, Angelina promised a 5-course menu. We kicked off with a delectable array of risotto tempura balls packed with unagi, fleshy venison tartare perfectly matched with focaccia chips and wagyu crudo spiked laced with blood orange.

The rest of the menu didn’t quite hit the spot; gnocchi topped with duck and lotus was reminiscent of mince meat while dessert in the form of Nashi pear and hazelnut tart with wasabi cream was overcooked and lacked that wasabi kick. But with wine pairings that really made my mouth water (think Merlino packed with brandy, wine and sugar), I couldn’t complain.

Still reeling from the pretty setting and glorious wines flowing freely, we had a lovely time at Angelina. The perfect east London date night pick, I’d definitely go back to see if the rest of the menu has picked up. If not, then the offer of a daily plate for £9 plus wine or beer at only £3 is an enticing bargain.

The verdict: 7/10

The damage: (£146 for two of us, but comped)

What we ate + drank: 

5 plates £38 + drinks pairing £35

  • Fritto misto:
    • Venison tartare with focaccia chips
    • House-cured salmon with truffle, salt, pepper and olive oil
    • Fried olives with parmesan
    • Unagi risotto tempura balls
  • Crudo of wagyu, venison and blood orange
    • Paired with a subdued Lagrein Riserva Amberg DOCG
  • Gnocci, duck lotus and morini
    • Paired with a light Chianti Rufina from Tuscany
  • Monkfish, hibachi pork and vignarola
    • Paired with a (white) Roero Arneis from Peidmonte
  • Nashi pear and hazelnut tart with wasabi cream
    • Paired with Merlino, Poerj e Sandri, Brandy & Lagrein, 2000

Dinner in pictures:

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You’ll find Angelina at 56 Dalston Lane, London, E8 3AH.

London Girl ✖️

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