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Friday, 20 December 2013

Satan's Whiskers, Bethnal Green

Satan is an anagram of Santa - from whom comes an early Christmas present in the shape of this devilishly handsome new American neighbourhood-style cocktail joint. Great name! An inspired choice for a gaff aimed at Bethnal Green's hirsute hipsters, nu-Edwardian gay boys and their beards. Tonight, however, the table next to mine is populated by hardcore indiginous Bethnal birds - think Eastenders' Big Mo Harris (played by Laila Morse) with the foghorn voice of late Eastender Frank Butcher (Mike Reid) after he'd chain-smoked 20 packs of Embassy Regal. Vintage French advertising posters and tongue-in-cheek taxidermy - gangsta squirrels, unicorn skeletons, a fish called Rhonda, I reckon  - set the scene for deadly serious drinks. Satan's Whiskers is by the people behind The Hemingway in Victoria Park and Hunter S - a De Beauvoir Town pub I didn't fall for TBH. (see ) Here, I'm a lot happier. £8.50 (including service) gets classic cocktails brandy Alexander, penicillin, clover club, and (prosecco-based) French 75. Less familiar suggestions at this hip E2 hole-up include E8 hold-up (vodka pineapple, lime and Aperol) and joint venture (rum, Campari, passion fruit and limonata). Lager and wines appear to be included as after-thoughts on a menu that also offers classic weekend brunch of eggs Florentine, royale or Benedict (annoyingly fiddly arranged on faffy wee black plates); brisket sweetcorn and coconut slaw, or scallop and bacon roll; Thai style moules frites (£7.50), and Bethnal breakfast of black pudding, bacon, sausage, poached egg and toast.
343 Cambridge Heath Road E2 7739 8362 Facebook: satanswhiskers

"Oi! Who are you calling a 'ipster?"

(image by 

Laila Morse is an anagram of mia sorella - Italian for my sister. The name was given to the actress by her brother Gary Oldman's one-time squeeze Isabella Rossellini. (Wikipedia) Cor blimey! Who knew?