Fantastical, whimsical, and more like a Jules Verne novel and Jumanji hybrid than a restaurant bar in East London, it's around the world in 80 Trading House teasers as this New World Trading newbie has both theft and rum left laced across my brain.
I'll clear up that theft part, shall I? I have aspirations for my future home: vintage furniture, walls laced in foliage and taxidermy, a stuffed mongoose in a velvet jacket, and you know, one of those digitised food portals from Star Trek. While the latter two don't necessarily apply, Trading House keeps both those initial interior specs firmly in check, and my five finger discount as pending.
Cultivated by movie set designers, and based around antiquarianism and worldly collectors, Trading House is a powerhouse of gilded butterfly frames, tousled trunks, stag heads, winding filigree stairs and a stuffed peacock guardian at the bar. This wonderland housed in an old bank is certainly showing London's bars up with its contemplative curation, and pretty as a peach decor; Split between the main bar, restaurant area and second floor bar, Trading House is pretty much an incredible 'idea' as truth.
The Food and Drink
While my Mum may have taught me to clear my plate, it looks like Trading House taught us to clear all three. A menu of British flavours with gastro grabbers, Trading House doesn't pander, it pleases. Starting with a lemon mayonnaise plate of calamari (£6.25) and keeping to the ocean, I chased this fresh dish with the subtle spice of pan fried seabass fillets atop a Piri Piri laced dressing. They source well, source responsibly, and trust me, source deliciously. The kebabs are worth a mention too, with a hanging stack of prawns in garlic butter with chips taking to our table for £13.95, followed by the gorging of a warm chocolate fudge cake at £4.95. Imagine your fork cutting into half warmed heaven and you've got it.
Slay us not, we actually only stuck to the cocktail list at Trading House, but for good reason. With my Raspberry Amaretto Sour (£7.95) giving the licks of the classic drink a floral punch, we knew this was where we wanted to stay. To say we ploughed is an understatement; jumping from Blueberry and Apple Cooler, to Cardamom and Pineapple Martini and the bold, silkily brash Cherry Choc Coffee Tini it's clear that Trading House have collected more than just glass trinkets and zebra heads.
While yes, I could count more Zara suits than fingers on my hand at Trading House, it's to be expected from a restaurant and bar in City......where else will we put them? That counting, Trading House doesn't stand on its City trade and chatter alone. Amorous to the extreme, our plot in the restaurant was romantic, chilled and fluid to the sound of live piano cuts and a belting songstress. The service? An absolute credit to the venue. Not only willing to spare the time to crack jokes, and armed with hugs, the team at Trading House are as conscientious as the interiors.
I'm changing DesignMyNight's review rating regime. No longer will we waffle on about, well, waffles, or talk tepidly about cocktail tasters, it's all on a scale of one to how many hugs; Trading House has left me a body clenching philanthropist, but I can't put that on my CV. Whether it was the waitress hug on the way out, the absolutely amorous atmosphere or New World's ability to fill crannies with set design and style, Trading House is an asset to East London, and I want to see one in every home before the year is out.