There is nothing more British than donning the knitted jumper Nan gave you, heading down to a quiet local and carving through a roast on a lazy Sunday. We’ve curated an up-to-date list of the tastiest pub lunches in Shoreditch and its sister neighbourhoods, to help add a touch of the warm and hearty to cold January weekends. Each venue serves up succulent cuts of meat as well as some pretty nifty vegetarian options, topped with the traditional helping of roasties, a side of yorkies and a jug of it’s-all-gravy. Tuck in!
The Royal Oak
73 Columbia Rd, E2 7RG
On the expensive side (by that we mean double what you’d normally pay), but well worth every penny; The Royal Oak on Columbia Road packs the punters into its upper floor thanks to seasonally produced Sunday plates. A Modern European gastro-pub, the current menu features melt-n-your-mouth 400g Sirloin steak on the bone, whole slow-cooked duck with salt-baked celeriac, 12 hour roast lamb shoulder with braised carrots and a pommes puree, and the vegetarian alternative of a chestnut mushroom, potato and spinach pie among others. Everything is rustically presented on wooden boards with a pitcher of silky jus and some form of crunchy root veg: wash down with a good old pint of ale.
The Princess of Shoreditch
76-78 Paul Street, EC2A 4NE
Full of character at 270 years old, this old girl isn’t ready to retire just yet. The Princess of Shoreditch is a softly lit and delicately ornamented pub that quietly proffers atmosphere, quality and service amidst the hustle and bustle of tech city. Awarded ‘Bib Gourmand’ in the 2013 Michelin Guide, she truly is royalty when it comes to Sunday roasts: with the provenance of the locally sourced menu providing a huge part of her appeal (though this honour is mainly afforded to the meat produce). The wording is kept simple with a nod towards the origin or farmer, letting the quality of the food speak for itself: roasts of Kilravock Farm pork Ribeye or Charles Ashbridge rare breed sirloin plated up with duck fat potatoes, seasonal greens, Yorkshire puds and a slathering of gravy.
The Cat & Mutton
76 Broadway Market, E8 4QJ
Established in 1729, The Cat & Mutton is a traditional pub on the corner of Broadway Market where locals can snuggle into the squishy sofas and settle down to a low set table for a proper supper on Sundays, along with a pretty mean Bloody Mary if you’re in the mood. Whether it’s a 28-day aged beef rump, pork belly with apple sauce or a veggie wellington, it’s guaranteed to be served up tender and in hearty portions. You can even order a whole chicken to carve up yourself and serve amongst friends, with a side of rosemary tatties, buttered veg and homemade puds making an appearance for every roast on the menu. Since it’s re-launch in the past year, service has become attentive yet subtle and the prices are pretty affordable for London: making this a must visit!
32 Rivington Street, Shoreditch, EC2A 3LX
As Damien Hirst's huge Cow and Cockerel installation looks benevolently down on the vast 150 seat capacity chicken and steak joint that is Tramshed, the incredible interior belies the restaurant's minimal menu. Serving roast chicken seven days of the week, it is a safe bet to venture to on a Sunday and manages to bring an edgy sense of cool to the occasion; families and friends can gather to enjoy shredding a whole chicken, feet’n’all, between them under the original industrial ceiling of a disused tram hold. Hix’s cocktail bar also gives a new elegant twist to Sunday lunch, with Tramshed’s expert mixologists shaking up storms like Blueberry Daiquiri (Pampero Blanco rum, blueberry juice, lime and sugar), Dalston Iced Tea (Black Cow vodka, Ocho Blanco tequila, pimento dram, Wray & Nephew rum, triple sec and lemon juice, topped off with Dalston Cola) and Elderflower Scrolls (Tanqueray gin, elderflower cordial and celery bitters). For a more contemporary yet just as hearty get-together, this is the place to come.
The Prince Arthur
95 Forest Road, E8 3BH
A pub roast doesn’t get much more old school than in the surrounds of The Prince Arthur; stained glass windows, wall mounted taxidermy and mix-and-match furniture ensure this charming local is at the top of the list of neighbourhood pubs to come to for some good hearty grub. The kitchen prides itself on serving up simple yet high quality gastro-pub food made with the freshest ingredients and sourced locally where possible. The most popular option not to be missed is the whole Suffolk chicken with bread sauce, sage and onion stuffing and tarragon gravy, or there's always the leg of Herdwick lamb; all to be enjoyed with the mixed crowd of in-the-know twenty-somethings and more mature locals that come here as much for the nourishment as for the winter-warming atmosphere.