In East London, cool wine bars are as common as off-licenses. The Laughing Heart is beloved by local creative and meedja types not only for its natural wines, eccentric food (everything from Vietnamese-style steamed mussels to wild mushroom tagliatelle), and friendly rottweiler Hugo, but also for excellent vibes, especially on such a dead stretch of Hackney Road. It’s open until 3am on some nights, and they’ll do you cocktails in the basement if you ask nicely. It’s a good spot if you’re local to the neighbourhood and want an extended hang, or somewhere to drink and grab a snack in the wee hours.
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The Royal Oak
The Royal Oak is a gastropub on Columbia Road, great for avoiding the market crowds, drinking craft beers, and tucking into a roast.
E. Pellicci is an old-school classic in Bethnal Green. It’s warm and welcoming, and if you don’t get a Full English breakfast, you did it wrong.
Bistrotheque is a neighbourhood bistro set in an old warehouse, with art projected on the walls and an ambience best described as ‘trendy as fuck’.
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Top Cuvée is a wine bar and restaurant in Highbury that gets busy on match days but is an otherwise great spot for a drink or a low key date night.
Not only is Noble Rot one of London’s best wine bars, it’s one of London’s best restaurants. Hit it for drinks and dinner, or just drinks and drinks.
Sager + Wilde Paradise Row
Sager + Wilde’s Bethnal Green outpost brings good wine and Italian eats, and mixes it with railway arch vibes and plenty of outdoor seats for summer.
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Morito Hackney Road
The Spanish small plates, the wine and the mood lighting makes you want to be cool enough to hang out at Morito, Hackney Road, all the time.
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