London Larder was devised in 2012 to bring you the ultimate eating and drinking guide to London. It was borne out of a need for up-to-date, quantitative and whole-heartedly recommended places to eat and drink.

Monday, July 15, 2013



As you walk down Broadway Market towards Stories, a few minutes walk away from the hustle and bustle of central Hackney, you could be forgiven for thinking that you had blacked out and ended up a mile down the road in Shoreditch. This is no accident. Stories is the latest venture from the owner of the Queen of Hoxton (with its popular roof garden) and the delightful Book Club, both of which are nestled within the rather cooler areas of Hackney.

Stories is no different to its sisters, and there are marked similarities to be found in the chic d├ęcor and menu presentation. The cocktails are just as punchy, with straight-to-the-point names like ‘Sob’, ‘Love’, ‘Adventure’, ‘Long’ and ‘Short’, whilst the food is conscientiously sourced. The waitress was even happy to address the concerns of a customer about the origins of the beef used in the burger.

As we were there in the evening, we selected from the bar food menu. First, we had the perfectly cooked marinated halloumi with roasted sweet red pepper and courgette. The marinade, which had strong hints of garlic, really added both flavour and a juiciness to the halloumi in a way we hadn’t previously considered, it was probably the highlight of the meal.

We also tried the beef and chorizo burger, which was nice, but not exceptional. Unfortunately, with the advent of the ‘posh burger’ that has made waves in London over the last few years, means that the average bar burger is struggling to keep up in a market, where once they were the lead players. This does not mean that we want to discredit the burger at Stories, and it really did bring through some lovely, almost unexpected, bites of chorizo. Alongside this, we also had a bowl of the triple cooked chips, which were gloriously thick and crispy - just how we like them. Triple frying seems to be increasingly popular these days and is a trend that we wholeheartedly approve of.

To wash all this down, we sampled a couple of the cocktails available on the menu. First we had the ‘Likely’, a heady concoction made using Sailor Jerry’s and Disaronno, which tastes like a cherry coke wrapped around a brick that someone has thrown at your face, in the best possible way. We also had the ‘Love’, a wonderfully decadent raspberry and vodka concoction topped to the brim with prosecco. Both were absolutely delicious and, in case you hadn’t guessed from the description of the ‘Likely’, extremely alcoholic, but we wouldn’t have it any other way.

Stories is open for brunch and bar food in the evenings. The menu is well thought out and varied; there is something for everyone here. The food is good quality, and there are definitely no questionable ingredients hiding in any of the dishes. It’s all fresh.

The bar, and the street it is located on, is a welcome, refreshing break from central Hackney. If you find your stomach rumbling as you wander along Mare Street you could do a lot worse than to make a detour of the beaten track and grab a bite to eat at Stories.

30 - 32 Broadway Market, E8 4QJ

Average price of main course: £7 
Average price of glass of wine: £6 
Food and drink: 4/5 
Service: 4/5 
Value: 5/5 


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