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Smokestak, London: ‘one glorious, considered pose’ – restaurant review

Some might mutter ‘filthy muck’ at the piles of blackened meat, but Jay Rayner sees only lunchSmokestak, 35 Sclater Street, London E1 6LB (020 3873 1733). Small plates £4.50-£9.50, big plates £8.50-£17.50, desserts £3.50-£7, wines from £27Some people would take one look at the items in front of me at Smokestak, push their gnarled, slatboard chair back from their aggressively battered table, mutter “filthy muck” under their breath and walk away. Is it cooked food, or something you’d cook food over? Both the sawn-off beef rib and the plank of pork belly are not just darkly sauced. They’re mostly black, like something you’d rescue from the wreckage of a house fire while sobbing over what has been lost.The crisped, sauced, charred surface of the pork belly rib gives way to fat almost melting away, then the soft meat below Continue reading…