Pips Dish, Hoxton Square

Pips Dish , a pop up set up by Philip and Mary, recently relocated from Islington to Hoxton Square. They’re located in a beautiful show kitchen, that Philip found by chance after a fortuitous conversation with kitchen designers Plain English, however you might need to keep your eyes peeled for it as the signage is very discreet.
The new space has one table which seats up to 10 people, you can either book it entirely for a private event or turn up and see who comes along on the same day. I love communal dining as it means you get a chance to chat to people you wouldn’t normally meet, begone London conventions of not talking to strangers. Communal dining also makes it feel like you’ve gone round to a friend’s house for lunch, but a friend who just happens to be a really good cook! This impression is only enhanced by Mischa the dog padding around under the table. There’s one no choice menu, although I think they can accommodate vegetarians and pescatarians if they’re given some advance notice.
I went for a lovely summery lunch that kicked off with watermelon, feta and olive salad, accompanied by crostini and tapenade. This was a perfect combination of sweet melon and salty feta, something that took me straight back to holidays in Turkey, where I first experienced it.

Watermelon, Feta and Olive Salad

Watermelon, Feta and Olive Salad

Crostini with tapenade

Crostini with tapenade

We then moved onto sardines, stuffed with raisins, breadcrumbs and anchovies, something that Mary told me was Sicilian inspired. Pips Dish puts a lot of emphasis on using sustainable fish that is not popular with other restaurants. Although I find sardines a bit tricky to eat (all those fiddly bones!) I applaud this policy, and once I managed to separate the fish from its skeleton I really enjoyed the unusual flavours.

Sardines, stuffed with raisins, breadcrumbs and anchovies

Sardines, stuffed with raisins, breadcrumbs and anchovies

The final course was bread and butter pudding, which I defy anyone not to like. I managed to polish off mine in record time , despite Mischa eyeing me hopefully, I wasn’t sharing!

Bread and butter pudding

Bread and butter pudding

Pips Dish have set up a lunch club for wed-fri through July which means you can get lunch for £20 including a glass of wine. If you become a member you get your 5th lunch free. I recommend getting a group of friends together and letting Philip and Mary take the strain in the kitchen. All the joys of a home cooked meal and none of the fuss!
http://www.pipsdish.co.uk
41 Hoxton Square
N1 6PB

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About goantolondon

International food and travel blog by London based British Goan duo: Jason and Chiara Pinto. Twitter: @goantolondon @jasonpinto100 @chiarapinto About Goa: Goa is a small state on the western coast of India. Though the smallest Indian state, Goa has played an influential role in Indian history. Goa was one of the major trade centers in India, thus it had always been attracting the influential dynasties, seafarers, merchants, traders, monks and missionaries since its earliest known history. Throughout its history Goa has undergone continual transformation, leaving an indelible impression on various aspects of its cultural and socio-economic development. History of Goa: The East-West symbiosis of Goa makes it different from other parts of India, more than the historical and social niche. The history of Goa is a sweet and sour story of colonial heritage, oppressive rulers, a glorious culture, and uneventful immediate past. As a land with the identity of its own, Goa was brought into focus when it was liberated of Portugal from its oppressive rule of around 450 hundred years in 1961. Goa was captured and annexed to the Portuguese in 1510 following the urges of trade and demand of spices and also cottons and indigo. But, Goa has a history that starts much before Portugal even thought of Goa being where it is. Goa was coveted and ruled by a great number of Indian kingdoms and dynasties from the 4th century onwards. The first kingdom to rule Goa and Konkan were Bhojas, who were the feudatories of Ashoka in 4th and 5th centuries AD. The city of Chandrapur (present Chandor) was founded by Prince Chandraditya, son of Chalukya King Pulakesin from 566 to 597 A.D. after this, Goa was ruled consecutively by Silahara Dynasty, Kadamba Danasty, and finally Hoysalas from 1022 to 1342 A.D. From the 14th century onwards, Goa became a great trading center on the west coast, especially in the vast trade of horses imported from the Middle East. This was the time for bigger empires to move in and Vijayanagar Empire conquered it in 1344. But there empire was not going to last too long and in 1347, Bahmani Sultans defeated Vijayanagara forces in 1347 and controlled Goa. Afterwards, it was a time of great prosperity and peace for Gpa, especially during the rules of Yusuf Adil Shah and Ismail Adil Shah. They created beautiful houses, fortified Goa, and encouraged local craftsmen. Their liberal and progressive rule was not going to last too long and situation changed in 1510 A.D. Goa for all purposes was not on the Portuguese Radar even after a long time of their presence in India. When the Portuguese nobleman Alfonso de Albuquerque and his cousin Francisco de Albuquerque were sent with a powerful fleet in 1503 on the orders of King Dom Manuel I, the purpose was to defend the cargoes of spices, mostly pepper, against Arab Muslim raiders. The center of spice trade was Calicut at that time and Portuguese had built forts in Cochin and Cannanore. It was in 1506-08 that an opportunistic pirate, Timoja, persuaded Albuquerque to attack Goa and acquire a better land base. This made Goa, Portugal's first real territorial acquisition in Asia. After a brief period of recapturing by the Muslims, Goa Albuquerque finally captured Goa in 1510. The inquisition of Goa in 1540 reversed the previous liberal policy of Albuquerque and imposed strict censorship of literature and new laws to forbade non-Christians from professions. Forced conversions took place continuously, censorship was established on literature, the temples were destroyed, and non-Christian priests, holy men, and teachers were evicted. This led to continuous fleeing of Hindus from Goa to other parts of India. It is not that the relationship with Portugal brought only destruction for the Goans. Portuguese also built great churches like the church of St. Cajetan and Bom Jesus basilica in Old Goa, which is a pilgrimage site for the Christians from around the world. But it is also true that pre-1961; Goa was a highly impoverished region very backward and primitive. It is after the liberation that Goa of today has emerged and it has surprised even the locals many of whom had left their homeland before its liberation. Portugal and India are today friends and Goa continues to be a fascinating blend of Latin and Oriental. Information sourced from: http://www.royalorienttrain.com/goa/goa-history.html
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