Maman and papa are spending three cold, November days in London. Arriving late on a Sunday afternoon they dashed over to the Courtauld and for a hot chocolate at the Fortnum's café there, before hopping on the tube back East for an early Sunday supper at Mission E2.
We'd heard so many positive things about this new Bethnal Green opening that we had started regretting that we had moved to a different neighbourhood in the Summer. It was slightly disappointing. Our consolation is that we don't need to be sad that we don't live just round the corner anymore. The grass is not always greener.
We were placed in the corner seat by the window. Not really an issue, except we were facing the reservations screen - blue and glaring in our faces.
There's no doubting that the wine list here is fabulous. Papa assumed his usual role of wine God and we shared a beautiful bottle of white from his friend's vineyard. Yum.
Bread and olives first. Bread pretty terrible - almost stale. The focaccia oil-free and dry. Olives, however, did a fabulous job at convincing B that olives aren't as revolting as he believes. (B's main conundrum is life is how olives can be so revolting but olive oil so delicious.)
B and maman both had venison pappardelle. Not enough venison. Not enough sauce. Pappardelle too clammy and sticky. No happy customers here.
Papa had pheasant kiev. Novel idea. But not quite perfect. Schnitzel for me has to have herby, melted butter squirting out of it. There was no melted butter on this plate, however tasty it was.
I had octopus and mussels with chickpeas in a tomato sauce. It was subtle and the octopus was tender and gorgeous. Scrummy, comforting food.
Vanilla and bergamot cheesecake was floral and therefore far too edible. The sweetness expected from cheesecake was cut into with the strong bergamot and the lime zest dusted on top.
A chocolate and caramel pot disappeared rather quickly. I'm not sure anyone can resist a smooth, dark chocolate pot with a dash of deep caramel hidden in the bottom on a Sunday evening.
Highlight: The most beautiful wine bar in this part of town
Lowlight: Sticky, and a little bit dry, venison pappardelle
Mission E2, 250 Paradise Row, London, E2 9LE