A modern, friendly restaurant serving up the best British cuisine I've had for a long time
Previously the home of the Arcola Theatre and a Victorian textile factory prior to that, Jones & Sons, which opened about 6 months ago is aimed at the more refined Dalstonites who are after a classic British meal with carefully sourced and prepared ingredients. Chef Kieran Hope is at the helm, and comes to Jones & Sons after working at Bistrotheque and Hix.
Jones & Sons (owned by Andy Jones, who previously ran the Cat & Mutton on Broadway Market) is a modern British restaurant tucked away just off the Dalston strip with coffee from Monmouth, meat from local Well Street Butchers and some ales from London breweries Meantime, Beavertown and The Kernel. The decor retains some of the charm from its industrial past with painted brickwork and dark wood along with some salvaged items including the hanging lights over the dining room from a shipyard in Exeter. The unique open kitchen with its own pitched roof, allows chefs privacy whilst still being on display.
We were a group of 6 and arrived just before 7:30 on a Wednesday night and were seated in a very cosy corner by the front windows. The first thing I noticed about the menu was that unlike some restaurants I’ve been to recently in the centre of London, Jones & Sons don’t add on a ‘London tax’ when it comes to pricing. The things that should be cheap, like bread & butter are just that at only £2, which (in my head) means that the more expensive things on the menu are going to be worth it. The wine is the same with bottles starting from an incredibly good value £16.
We ordered a couple of portions of bread & butter to start while everyone looked over their options as well as a couple of bottles of wine. One Terrain Viognier (£20) and a Pinot Blanc Maison Koenig (£26), both of which complimented our starters nicely.
We ordered two Chargrilled Artichoke, Radicchio, Caerphilly & Honey (£7.50 each), a portion of the Scallops, Caviar, Shallot Puree & Blood Orange (£9.50) and two Potted Pork, Coleslaw & Crackling (£7.50) to share amongst us. These were all delicious! I tend not to order anything veggie, especially as a starter but the salad was stunning with plenty of flavour from the charred artichokes and a lovely dressing which balanced perfectly with the shavings of Caerphilly on top. The pork was juicy, flavoursome and came with a large shard of crispy crackling and the scallops were perfectly cooked but outshone by the silky shallot puree.
On to the main course we shared two Pan Fried Plaice with Fennel Four Ways (£14 each), a Half Lobster, Wild Garlic Butter & Triple Cooked Chips (£24) and two Butcher’s Steak with Bearnaise (£14.50 each). The plaice was delicately cooked and worked very well with the various fennel textures, the lobster was as good I’ve had anywhere but steeply priced compared to the whole lobster for £20 I recently had at Lobster House.
The steak was the stand out dish for me – cooked to a perfect medium rare and cut in to man size chunks with a velvety smooth, rich bearnaise to dip in to… It brought a big smile to our collective face. We also ordered a few sides, all of which didn’t disappoint – Broccoli, Purple Kale and a couple of portions of very good Triple Cooked Chips. All of this was washed down with a couple of lovely reds – a Nero D’Avola Caleo (£20.50) and a Pinot Noir d’Autrefois (£25).
None of us really had space for dessert but that didn’t stop us ordering a Sticky Toffee Pudding with Ice Cream (£6.50), the chef’s signature dish – Puffed Up Chocolate, Hazelnuts & Passion Fruit Ice Cream (£7.50) and a Lemon Tart with Raspberries & Cream (£5.50). The sticky toffee was deliciously rich but I wasn’t sure about the Puffed Up Chocolate. The chocolate part was nice enough but for me, the passion fruit ice cream didn’t compliment any of the other flavours in the dish. Sadly, by the time I’d tried the other two, the others had demolished the Lemon Tart – must have been decent!
Our evening at Jones & Sons was near faultless. The food, wine and service from Liz & Emerald (yes, Emerald) all ranked highly and Jones & Sons really does offer very good value. We didn’t get a chance to meet the owner Andy but he sounds like a character and I love the personal touches in the restaurant, including ‘The Cabinet’ – tucked snugly by the bar, which is an antique drinks dispenser and family heirloom passed down from Andy’s grandfather.
Mondays are home to a 2 for 1 cocktail offer from 17:30 as well as a fixed price menu serving up two courses for £16, or three for £19. Sundays see brunch being served from 11:00 – 13:00 with (an apparently life-changing) Sunday lunch running from 13:00 – 17:00 then the standard dinner menu from 18:30.
I’ll be back, probably on a Sunday so I can have brunch, lunch and maybe even dinner.
|Bread & Butter x 2||£2.00 each|
|Chargrilled Artichoke, Radicchio, Caerphilly & Honey x 2||£7.50 each|
|Scallops, Caviar, Shallot Puree & Blood Orange||£9.50|
|Potted Pork, Coleslaw & Crackling x 2||£8.00 each|
|Pan Fried Plaice with Fennel Four Ways x 2||£14.00 each|
|Half Lobster, Wild Garlic Butter & Triple Cooked Chips||£24.00|
|Butcher's (Onglet) Steak with Bearnaise x 2||£14.50 each|
|Purple Sprouting Broccoli||£4.50|
|Triple Cooked Chips||£3.50|
|Sticky Toffee Pudding||£6.50|
|Puffed Up Chocolate, Hazelnuts & Passion Fruit Ice Cream||£7.50|
|Lemon Tart with Raspberries & Cream||£5.50|
|Pinot Blanc Maison Koenig||£26.00|
|Nero D'Avola Caleo||£20.50|
|Pinot Noir d'Autrefois||£25.00|
|Pacherenc Rive Haute x 4||£5.00 each|
|Courvoisier Vsop||£4.50 each|
23 – 27 Arcola Street,
London E8 2DJ