By Maggie Majstrova
Having been particularly lucky with the weather over the first May Bank Holiday Weekend (for a change!), my fiancé and I were looking forward to being similarly lucky on our anniversary this year, which conveniently fell on the Tuesday after the Bank Holiday (hello four day weekend!).
We’d planned a nice walk through Shoreditch – a completely different experience to the same walk over a weekend, mind you – and fell back on some of our local favourites to help us make the day extra special. I wonder at which point in this post you’ll notice that we definitely are hipsters, even if we vehemently deny it! Or perhaps I’m too late with that statement already?
Anyway, skipping the walk itself (there are much better people to take you on a photo walk through London than I am!), we popped into our second home for ‘a quick pint’ – which by the way in our case has to date never been quick nor a single pint! – at BrewDog Shoreditch.
For those of you who don’t know (I understand there are one or two people like this out there!), BrewDog is a Scottish Craft Beer company, which has been taking the UK by storm, opening new bars at lightening speed all over the UK and internationally.
Their menu changes regularly, though with a set of favourites (Punk IPA anyone?) firmly at its top regardless. This time, we opted for the Jet Black Heart, which at 4.7% is actually one of the weaker pints on the menu. It’s described as a ‘nitro stout … black as pitch and smooth as hell. An abyss of chocolate and espresso, with flashes of dark berry and citrus.’ and while I cannot vouch for the citrus and berry, chocolate and espresso are definitely there. This one’s a definite keeper for me!
After a couple of Tuesday lunchtime pints, I can’t think of anything better, than some hearty food to soak up some of that alcohol (point me towards anyone who can!) and this time, I couldn’t think of anywhere better but Bierschenke. Just off London Wall, Bierschenke is ‘London’s Munich Beer Hall’ – think long benches, staff in ‘costume’, the Bundesliga on the projectors and even some live music from time to time.
The menu boasts some German classics and we just couldn’t resist the Currywurst mit pommes frites (Curried sausage with fries) and 4 Nurnberger auf sauerkraut (Nurnberger sausages on sauerkraut). Now these are technically ‘small plates’ according to the menu, but I for one was very happy with the portion size on the Currywurst. I imagine the Nurnberger portion could have been larger, but we were duly warned! Regardless, I can honestly say that having sampled both dishes in Germany previously, these definitely match up. Plus, it’s a much shorter journey to Bierschenke!
With it being our anniversary, we let ourselves be persuaded to order desserts as well, and we definitely didn’t regret it.
We decided on the Apfelstrudel in Vanillesose und Preiselbeeran (Apple Strudel with custard and cranberries) and Mohnschupfnudeln mit Vanillesose (Bavarian poppy “Schupfnudel” with vanilla sauce). Now, I realise the second of those dishes, even when translated, probably doesn’t give you much of an idea of what it was we were eating.
The best way to describe this, in my humble opinion, are small sweet dumplings, with poppy seeds and a sort of runny custard. Unfortunately for me, this dish is fairly similar to some sweet mains we have in the Czech Republic and although I imagine my mum would not be able to get enough of them (as did my fiancé), I am very happy to pass (but that’s definitely a matter of personal taste!). The strudel on the other hand – well, how could you go wrong with a real apple strudel?? You can’t. It’s pure bliss.
I would definitely recommend Bierschenke, I must say. Especially as I’ve just found out they are starting a buffet menu from May 18. Hold me a place guys!