I like to challenge a restaurant to see how they will approach my being gluten free. Don’t get me wrong, I am not playing Russian roulette with my health, because the kind of places I seek out, I have a hunch are going to serve me well. And man was my instinct right about Lyle’s.
Situated on the corner of Shoreditch High St, in the industrial warehouse that is the Tea Building, this pared back, elegant, but rustic dining room is a simple setting to let you focus on the food.
For dinner it is a set meal focused on incredible, seasonal ingredients put together with real creativity. And it was all gluten free. Speaking with them about the reservation, they said they would cater for me. I had no idea what that would entail, but was hopeful. On arrival, the evenings menu was entirely gluten free, including the amuse bouche snacks, pettit four and even gluten free bread (which needs rescuing by Wild Thexton or Romeo’s) but at least they had some!
Calcot onions were sprinkled with pan fried buckwheat groats, that were ingenious. Mackerel came in a sea of wild garlic sauce, pigeon sat with slithers of roasted beetroots and crunchy walnuts, but the best was simply apple, sorrel and goats curd. Like a savoury ice cream it was weird looking, but blew my taste buds. Dessert was to die for; dehydrated blood oranges, yoghurt sorbet, and a intense almond cake. It felt like the menu had been made for me.
Talking with the staff, this is how the food is normally. Lunch and dinner. Largely cab free, with fresh, seasonal ingredients combined simply to let them sing. The wine list is packed with unique and almost retro bottles, but each we tried paired the food exceptionally.
To be catered for in this way, was such a joy. It is a long time since I have been inspired, excited and truly blown away by the complete offer from a restaurant. Service, ambience, food, wine and all gluten free.