I’m all talk. I’ve been talking about eating Ghanaian food for ages, about visiting that lovely lady on Holloway road. But, the (uncharacteristically) amazing weather Saturday, stellar reviews, perfect location between our apartment and London Fields/Broadway Market, and a recommendation from @RWGaptastic led Pete and I directly to Little Georgia, a small Georgian cafe in Hackney.
Pete and I enjoyed a fabulous, but confused Georgian meal last summer in St. Petersberg, and were eager to make a more informed decision at a restaurant where we could read the menu.
Little Georgia is small, but cozy. A perfect cafe to lounge in on a lazy Saturday. But that, too, presented a problem. The lunch menu was not overwhelmingly “Georgian” (though to be fair, I didn’t do my research) and offered fairly standard sandwiches, breakfast platters, coffee, and smoothies.
So, we picked what we thought might be the most traditional Georgian dishes: blini (pancakes) and pelmini (dumplings) though we had eaten and enjoyed both these dishes in Russia, too. They were, however, out of pelmini. So instead, we split the blini (and a banana shake), had a look at the dinner menu, and decided to come back another time.
But, based on the blini, the homey decor (particularly the funky bathroom collages!), and the constant stream of Georgian friends/family and non-Georgian locals, alike, I would absolutely recommend this place anyway, and I can’t wait to go back myself.
I’ve never understood the hype surrounding crepes, and I ate my fair share of underwhelming blini in Russia, so my expectations were low. I expected a sloppily presented, bland, less-delicate-than-a-crepe pancake like you get at the cheap, student cafes in Russia. This particular blini, however, was superb. The pancakes were served plain and folded with smoked salmon and a generous dollop of creme fraiche on the side. The accompanying salad was not an afterthought, but full of fresh olives, avocado, and sun-dried tomatoes. All in all, it was the perfect Saturday brunch I didn’t know I wanted…even if it could have fit seamlessly onto an American, English, or French brunch menu as well.
So good, in fact, it made us reconsider the sandwich menu, realising that they too were probably more exciting then they let on. We ultimately opted not to order one, and instead keep grazing at Broadway Market and return to Little Georgia for dinner sometime soon. Also on offer during lunch were two specials of the day, both stews, which, for a 75 degree morning, seemed inappropriate. (Broadway Market also had a vendor selling Ghanaian stews that looked lovely, but too warm and hearty for a summer market snack.)
We’ll definitely be back for dinner which includes a mezze platter of Georgian appetisers (which they were willing to make for us during lunch, but said it would take some time, the cheesy-bread we fell in love with at the Georgian restaurant in St. Petersburg ), and several more dishes that sounded interesting and unfamiliar.
I suppose Eatabetical isn’t about finding the strangest item on the menu, and if the two Georgian meals I’ve had are typical Georgian fare, than perhaps I should plan my trip to Georgia! Here’s to another Georgian meal soon and a new (semi) neighborhood favorite, even after only one dish. To be continued…