After trying and LOVING our dinner at Aside a few weeks back, I couldn’t get down to Coal Rooms fast enough. A new one from the guys who are rolling out a string of GREAT restaurants in Peckham, and putting South East firmly on the foodie map, the special thing about Coal Rooms is its bespoke charcoal grill and oven, which inspire its meat and fish-led menu. It's located in Peckham Rye’s old ticketing office — slap bang next to the overground station, making it brilliantly convenient to come from afar. And just like Aside, the interiors are on point — warm feeling and scandi-inspired, with high ceilings, a slick parquet floor, and beautiful original station toilets that really remind you of what the building was before.
From a non-meat eater’s point of view, I’d say the menu here is a lot of more meat-focused than the delicious seasonal veg heavy menu at Aside, but there are still options, and the sides are definitely a strong point/ good enough to have as a main. For meat eaters, it’s gold. A modest but adventurous selection of dishes from ox cheek to blood pudding and mutton chop.
We shared the two veggie and fish starters to start: smoked eel gnocchi (delicious) and creamy coal-roasted cauliflower dusted with furikake — a black Japanese seasoning made of seaweed and dried fish.
For mains, I went for the brown crab which was as cooked as a light curry with puffed rice and fresh green chilli, whilst Ed went for the heartier mutton chop. We shared the tenderstem broccoli with breadcrumbs, and Vadouvan-spiced roast carrots, which, I’d go as far as saying, were the best carrots I’ve had in TIME.
Save room for dessert. We tried the apple and cheese pie with cinnamon ice cream, and the particularly naughty millionaire shortbread, made using waste barista milk (love that idea), it's really bloody good.
I’m really loving the stuff these guys are doing — everything from the food, to the interiors, and the proper friendly service is everything you want from a restaurant experience. We’re gonna be regular visitors.
COAL ROOMS, PECKHAM RYE STATION, 11A STATION WAY, LONDON, SE15 4RX