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23 September 2015

food | platform 1, east dulwich

last wednesday i joined rosie at east dulwich's newest fine-dining pop-up restaurant; platform 1. located on lordship lane, it's only a twenty(ish) minute walk from my local station, so i met her there slightly sweaty, and a tiny bit late after a last-minute crisis at work had me hanging back twenty minutes too long. 

from home, it would have been a thirty minute walk. from work in north london, it was an hour and a half, door-to-door. and even more for poor rosie, who'd come all the way from the west. breezing in - huffing and puffing, we both agreed that the night had better be worth it after the journies we'd had; once a delicious citrus cocktail was placed in our hands, we knew we'd made the right decision accepting the crew's generous offer.
local girl chloe gounder-forbes has created a platform for up and coming chefs to create and manage their own hybrid menus while simultaneously establishing a name for themselves on the foodie scene. in last week's case the talent came from a combined ten years of fine dining experience by way of smoke and salt; chefs aaron webster and remi williams say that the idea behind smoke and salt is to create food that's not only delicious, but also to learn and recreate different techniques along the way.

the restaurateurs are also devoted to growing their own produce too; their micro-herb and vege garden out the back is maintained on a grow-to-order basis from the kitchen and bar - in fact, the signs on the walls in the beer garden clearly state "please don't ash in the garnish!" a nice touch i thought, and i was excited to eat their home grown goodies once i'd seen the menu.

you'll have to forgive the photos; my phone camera has turned to absolute crap at the moment, and i can't get it to focus in low light. reason #52739 why i need to upgrade it stat. nevertheless, despite the picture quality being terrible, i can assure you that the food quality was not. within minutes of being shown to our table, we were treated to some table treats from the bar, including pigs tails, which i was terrified about trying. i needn't have been, because despite the pink-and-curly images dancing around my head, they tasted just like pork belly. and i love pork belly. so as it turns out, i guess i now also love pigs tails.

my starter was the ridiculously delicious confit duck, served on a delicate salad of summer squash, white plums, and ribbons of raw courgette, and drippings of a sweet hoisin sauce. it was an incredible mash up of flavours, and quite possibly the tastiest confit duck i've ever, ever had. i could have easily eaten that course again, if not for my main course making it's way to my table: grilled pork belly. served with watermelon panzanella, lime and chicory, it was another mouth watering course that left me wanting moar. not because small dishes, but because deliciousness.

the piece of belly was huge in comparison to similar dishes i've had, and the two courses had left us completely stuffed - rare, in any fine dining sitch i've ever been in. i do despise the "mini meals" you often are served when you're paying through the nose, but at £16.50 for a main and £8 for a starter, i was pleasantly surprised by the local restaurant's portion sizes and value. not to mention the quaint little home made oreos and mint sorbet that made their way into my already-full belly.

we were there just over two hours, and were incredibly full. plus a bottle of the restaurant's finest pink wine had been consumed, and we each had a journey ahead; rosie, an hour on a bus, and me a half an hour walk up a hill, which wasn't an ideal situation to be in. knowing that the restaurant is a short walk from mine means that i will definitely be heading back there soon. i had no idea that lordship lane was in walking distance either, so look out south london nightlife, erica's coming for you! (probably a lie).

thank you so much to the whole team at platform 1 for having us over for dinner. if you fancy trying them out yourself, you can keep up to date with their social on twitter and instagram, and find them at:

71 lordship lane, east dulwich, se22
0203 609 2050

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