Gunpowder, Spitalfields E1

One Friday I thought I’d be clever and arrive dead on 5.30pm, opening time, to beat the queues at Gunpowder. I came once before at 7pm with two friends and there were SIXTEEN people in front of us. They only seat twenty. I had to bargain with the waiter to  get him to put my name down for 7pm (it was empty and the boy hadn’t arrived yet). He very nicely did that and we went away and came back right on 7pm.

We proceeded with a lot of food. The Egg Curry Masala was a surprise hit. I overdosed on hard boiled eggs when I used to diet (HAH!) but the thick, rich, hot as hell masala (to me, weakling that I am) completely masked any unwanted egginess. It was just a wobbly vehicle to that unctuous powerful punch in the gullet sauce.

Porhzi okra fries looked liked whitebait – all crunchy spikes, the crispy little fuckers. Absolutely insanely good. Addictive. One of the stand out dishes (they all stood out, this place is the shit).

Sigree grilled mustard broccoli came dressed in a really lovely sauce. I don’t remember how it tasted exactly, but I do remember it being more on on the fresh side, surprisingly – I got super drunk after so some of this is a blur (sorry). The veg was cooked perfectly al dente, I love that.

Whole red snapper in shorshe (mustard) sauce looked disturbing (at a 90 degree angle with half a sad chilli plopped on top). It was pretty damn good though. The sauce was very sharp, almost sour, and didn’t really taste like mustard. The skin crackled and popped, with some soft bones that I had no trouble eating. It was a deceptively large portion – enough for two by far.

Saag with tandoori paneer came late, alone, but was so worth the wait. Thick wedges of cheese in a peppery green sauce, with a strong powerful hit. I’ll be honest, everything had this pleasant undertone of heat burn so by the final dish my mouth was sizzling. This was fucking fantastic though.

All in all, what a fucking treat. Love this place. Get yourself down there. Maybe not at 5.30pm though. Try 5.45pm.


Four and a half out of five stars (I like booking).

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