For a long time, eating out in Hackney meant a fry up in a greasy spoon cafe or a polystyrene box of stew chicken from a Caribbean takeaway: both pretty perfect in their own right, but not exactly the stuff that elegant evening meals are made of. Then along game a smattering of independent neighbourhood restaurants offering imaginative food at reasonable prices, of which Wilton Way’s elegant new joint Mayfields is the current jewel in the crown.
The restaurant itself is minimal enough to blend seamlessly with its lowkey East London surroundings, but the menu wouldn’t look out of place in a Michelin-starred Soho hotspot. On any given night you might find a dish like mackerel sashimi with sesame and lemon, or venison tartare with Jerusalem artichoke, followed by ricotta with honeycomb and fig. Plates are beautifully presented and built to share - order two or three each, plus a cocktail from the appealing menu - and you’ll probably spend around £30 a head. A bit steeper than your average Hackney dinner, perhaps, but then Mayfields is far from average.