How convenient that as my love for the Clerkenwell area grows, so too does the array of cool restaurants that keep opening there.
The Fourteenth Colonie has sprung from a concept that started in the US, in Brooklyn in fact. ‘Brooklyn’s Colonie’ is New York’s first crowd-funded bar and restaurant, and the Fourteenth Colonie is a partnership in London. For those who think I am misspelling the word ‘colonie’, I’m not. I believe this might be a play on the Dutch word for colony, as they were the first foreign nation to colonise Brooklyn.
Unsurprisingly, the Brooklyn influence is evident in its Clerkenwell counterpart – expect rough, distressed walls, lots of wooden and dark metal furniture and an injection of colour in the form of the bright blue leather banquette. It works very well; the space is bright during the day, with large windows allowing for people watching. At night though, with its orangey, dim lighting, the place is dark and atmospheric. Most of the dining area is raised above what they call ‘the Pit’, their very cool bar. I’d highly recommend a cocktail here before moving on to dinner.
The food is all Brooklyn inspired – think burgers and pulled pork, craft beers and citrusy cocktails. They also offer breakfast/brunches and lunch. I was impressed by the service; friendly and efficient, though our waitress did recommend the Shrimp Po Boy (a prawn baguette) to Vita, which she didn’t like as much (‘too much bread, not enough prawn’). I loved my Drunken Piglet Burger – I’d never had a beef burger WITH pulled pork. The most indulgent thing you could eat. Their starters (I had the Duck Rilette Crostini, Vita had the Hushpuppies) were really good too.
The company behind this concept, Ruth and Robinson, aims to open another 8 Brooklyn inspired ‘colonie’ restaurants around London soon, so keep your eyes peeled.
45 Clerkenwell Road, London EC1M 5RS
020 7253 4924
Photos Fourteenth Colonie’s own