Sooo who knew that London’s favourite American restaurant, Dirty Bones, now offers a weekend brunch menu?! I certainly didn’t! Yes that’s right, everyone’s go-to burger and waffle destination, Dirty Bones, now do a a brunch menu, boasting a variety of different dishes… Some of which are quite unique! So it was safe to say that both me and Stew were very excited to head over to their Shoreditch branch.
Dirty Bones really step it up a notch with their brunch menu. With dishes such as Short Rib Crumpets, Matcha Custard French Toast and Banana Toblerone-Tella Waffles, there’s bound to be something that intrigues everyone. I was quite frankly mesmerised by the menu and the decadent, unusual mix of ingredients and flavours. Trying to decide on just one (well, technically two, as I tried Stew’s too – obv) was quite a task! And if that wasn’t enough to get my juices flowing, the cocktail menu was equally as lively. Spiked Iced Coffee initially caught my eye – a triple expresso cocktail with a shot of cognac and Mozart chocolate liqueur. But of course it was the gin option that I went for. The Uptown Spritz features Tanqueray gin, Aperol, Campari, pink grapefruit and ginger ale. Literally all of my favourite things to find in a cocktail. It couldn’t have been more perfect.
Back to the food though, and the menu was just too good to only try two dishes… So we opted for three! The portion sizes are good but not overly massive, so we were able to share three between the two of us fairly easily. (Saying that we didn’t have dinner that night as we were still stuffed!). We decided to share the Salmon Crumpets which consisted of beetroot cured salmon lox, complete with two poached eggs and lashings of hollandaise sauce. Stew then chose the Chicken & Waffles which came with a fried egg on top and a serving of maple syrup on the side, and I chose the Short Rib Hash – 14 hour slow cooked short rib finished with caramelised shallots, mustard seeds, potato, two sunny side-up eggs.
We both agreed that the beetroot salmon crumpets were the most unusual (and photo-worthy), but I don’t think I would’ve been able to finish the dish all by myself. Personally I found them quite rich, but I always feel that way about hollandaise. However, if Eggs Royale is your go-to brunch dish, this beetroot crumpet version is definitely for you!
The chicken and waffles were really fantastic. Perfectly sized, so that you didn’t feel disgusting afterwards, and just the right amount of fried batter. The chicken is slow cooked for 6 hours, giving it a beautifully succulent and juicy texture. It was really quite impressive. I’ve never tasted fried chicken like it, and equally the waffles at Dirty Bones are kept fairly light. Big thumbs up from the two of us on this one!
The Short Rib Hash was nice in it’s own right – beautiful flavours coming through from the caramelised shallots and mustard seeds. But the chicken and waffles just pipped it to the post! To top it all off we also ordered a side of Cheesy Chipotle Beans which were a mix of black eye, butter and baked beans, with a good kick of spice and a thick layer of cheese on top. This worked perfectly as a side for both the Short Rib Hash and the Chicken & Waffles.
Having polished off all three dishes, plus our cocktails, we weren’t sure whether we could fit dessert in, but Stew had already spotted the Shadow Milkshake and couldn’t resist, so of course I had to order one too. I chose the Peanut Butter Cookie Cup which include salted peanut butter gelato (which was literally a slice of heaven!!), caramelised chocolate ganache, dark chocolate cookie chunks and honey nut brittle. I was told this was one of the most popular desserts and it was easy to see why. You must try this, just for the salted peanut butter ice-cream alone!
The Shadow Milkshake consisted of double chocolate ice-cream, Oreo and chocolate sauce. You can make it into a boozy milkshake with a shot of Bulleit Rye whiskey, but Stew decided to keep it as it was, and it was beautifully creamy. Really in hindsight we should’ve just ordered one, as we were unable to finish them both, but I’m glad we got to try both as they were equally as good as each other. A nice touch that I appreciated, was that they tied a napkin around the metal shaker that the milkshake was served in, meaning you could pick it up without freezing your fingers. Ha! I love a good milkshake, but there’s nothing that annoys me more when it’s served in a metal shaker that is so cold you can’t touch it without getting your fingertips stuck to it. So kudos to Dirty Bones for thinking ahead.
In fact, Dirty Bones have really thought of it all with this Shoreditch location. The restaurant is absolutely stunning. The decor is easily 5/5! Think mint velvet curtains, deep purple velvet booth seating, gold finishes and neon signage. Plus the walls are adorned with fantastic artwork. I wish I’d asked where they had collected them all, as they’re a fantastic collection. I had previously only visited Dirty Bones Kensington which is set in a dark basement, so I was quite surprised to find that the Shoreditch one was light and airy with instagrammable decor. However, the Kensington one is currently closed for some TLC, so maybe they will re-create the same there. It’s really a winning combination!
We were also told that the Shoreditch branch have a DJ playing on Friday and Saturday nights, which I’d be keen to head back for as see the restaurant transform from day to night.
Price wise Dirty Bones is super reasonable. Brunch dishes are priced between £8-£12. Cocktails are £8/£9 and desserts £6/£7.
Dirty Bones brunch review: 5/5
- Unique flavours and ingredients
- Fantastic value for money
- Beautiful decor
- Great location – just a stone’s throw away from Brick Lane, Boxpark and Columbia Road Flower Market
- For the first time we left a restaurant not feeling overly stuffed. Bonus!