*Thank you Push Play Media for this invite 

Let’s be honest, who doesn’t love a rooftop bar? Particularly when it’s set conveniently close by to the city centre.

The new refurbishments for the already hip East Village Hotel comes with a delightful fresh vibe and fairy lights!

We arrived at East Village Hotel, made our way upstairs and were greeted with “Hello gorgeous!” every time we looked up. If that kind of flirting doesn’t motivate you to climb the stairs, I’m not sure what else does.

When we finally made it to the top we walked out onto what felt like a little wonderland. The overlooking fairy lights replicate stars against the sky and everywhere you look there are splashes of greenery.

The vibe of the bar is chic, relaxing and cool, with pastel themes throughout the room.
You definitely feel like you’re part of the cool club just being here.

Looking through the lengthy and versatile menu I was pleased to see some winter specials in both food and drink. Boasting anything from your healthy Buddha Bowl to the humble pub pie, you can find something for everyone.

We took some recommendations from our waitress Meg, who presented a great selection.

Salmon Poke Bowl
They say that 2017 is year of the poke, and they’re absolutely right.
With poke popping up in all sorts of places, it’s no surprise to see it on the menu at the newly refurbished East Village Hotel too.

Served delicately, the dish reminded me of a bibimbap, with the addition of rice and sriracha.

Every element, when mixed, plays a role and makes for a different kind of mouthful every time you take a bite. My biggest qualm though was that the black rice was stodgy and heavy, therefore it didn’t quite mix in like the rest of the fresh ingredients. And maybe it’s my Asian background but I usually have black rice in desserts, so it seemed a little out of place in this dish. I, personally, also found the pickled cucumber a little too sweet, whereas the Mister was head over heels for it.

That being said, the salmon was full of freshness and marinated with a citrus and soy combination that just worked with the other elements. I’m loving this new trend and can’t wait to see more of it. Trust me, it’s going to be a must at your next visit at East Village, particularly when the months get a little warmer.

Karaz Kebabs

We also ordered something small from the share menu, the Karaz kebabs;  seasoned lamb meatballs with a sweet cranberry sauce and cucumber yoghurt.

The kebabs had a lovely herby aroma throughout. It went really well with the yoghurt, which cut straight through the dish with a hit of freshness and acted as a palate cleanser with every bite. This was a nice little sharing plate that wasn’t too heavy and goes perfectly with a couple of drinks. A nice fit for the grazing section of the menu.

Honey glazed ham board 

As part of the winter specials, the honey-glazed ham caught my eye as thoughts of Christmas crossed my mind. We were served a feast of ham, bread and pear chutney – plentiful between the two of us to share.

The honey was roasted just enough so that the glaze had a nice char around it, allowing the glaze to really set into the ham. I really liked the contrast between the sweet glaze and pear chutney amongst the salty ham and crisp bread. A killer combination that tastes just like Christmas and comfort.

Blue Blazer 

We also managed to order one of the cocktails from this season’s specials.

Made with cinnamon butter and flamed to create a blue flame, this cocktail was aptly named.

Served warm, this cocktail reminds me of the kind of drink you’d be given in the snow to warm your frostbite. The cinnamon was a nice rounded aftertaste after the initial hit of cognac. After taking one sip we could feel the warmth spread across our bodies like a hug.

Our visit to the East Village Hotel rooftop made us forget where we were. We were enveloped in this unique wonderland of incredible food and drink which was intimate and made you feel like a local.

I love the new refurbishment and can’t wait to see the season specials change over time. You’ll probably see me back soon for a boozy late lunch.

East Village Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato
Written by Jay Santiago (@eatventures_)