Wright Brothers, Spitalfields
As spring fast approaches, we are becoming far less inclined to spend evenings hibernating in cosy pubs with hearty wine and fayre. Rather, we are looking to embrace the merry month of May – to spend long and lazy afternoons, moseying around in the sunlight and honey blossom, drinking Pimms and pairing up on the picnic blanket.
Wright Brothers fits in perfectly with the spring scene. The fresh and vibrant shellfish on offer anticipates trips full of sun, sea and summer lovin’. Both leisurely and luxurious, the interior features spinning fans, wooden banquettes, nautical paraphernalia and glass oil lamps. The elegant Carrara marble bar takes centre place, along with tanks overflowing with oysters, King crabs and lobster. Touch knees at the bar, sipping cocktails and picking out your dinner from the tanks, or dine indulgently in one of the intimate booths.
From ‘sea-to-plate’ is the Wright Brothers’ philosophy – you can’t get fresher than that. Begin with a dozen oysters, hand-picked from azure tanks and prepared before your eyes. Keep half au naturel and adorn the others with jalapeño dressing; creamy, light and zesty, it accompanies the oysters perfectly, without stealing the show.
Next depends on how adept you are with a pair of crackers. If confident in the handling of such implements, opt for a whole brown crab and bond over the process of foraging for your food. However, if you seek immediate satisfaction, share a selection from the “Shellfish” and “Kitchen”. The Crab Croquettes are not to be passed over: crunchy and light, they are generously filled with rich brown crabmeat. The Scallops served on the shell, Mackerel and Blood Orange Salad and Raw Sea Bream with a bright pistachio vinaigrette are also not to be missed.
To reach perfection, finish with a Chocolate and Salted Caramel pot, alongside a glass of fruity Hungarian dessert wine.
Spend a couple of carefree hours browsing round Old Spitalfields Market – gentleman, buy the lady a flower garland to really bring the romance up a notch. Break up the afternoon with a drink and fun game of pool at The Water Poet (avoid becoming over competitive around the pool table!). As the stalls start to clear away, and the bustling crowd dies down, wrap your arms around each other and saunter over to the Wrights Brothers for oysters sourced from HRH Prince Charles’s estate and a glass of crisp white wine. After such an idyllic supper, the evening is literally your oyster.
Aphrodisiac or not – if your date’s not a seafood lover, the evening may lack a little lustre. However, if they even hint at a liking for crustacean, this is the place to impress.
4. Seafood at its sexiest.