Roe, Pop Brixton, London SW9: restaurant review
Try poitín-spiked ceviche, spicy squid 'noodles' and earthy Guinness bread at this fish and seafood restaurant in Pop Brixton
Looking for places to eat in Brixton? Read our review of seafood restaurant Roe, or check out our Pop Brixton round up here...
Roe in a nutshell: Sustainably minded outfit serving delicate fish and seafood dishes with an Irish twist.
Head chef Simon Whiteside trained and worked under the likes of Raymond Blanc and Robin Gill before setting up seafood stall Bia Mara in his home town of Dun Laoghaire in Ireland. He then decamped to Belgium, establishing restaurants in Brussels and Antwerp, before returning to the UK to open fish joint Hook in Camden in 2014. He’s now taken over a shipping container at Pop Brixton to launch ethical fish and seafood restaurant Roe.
What's the vibe?
Space is at a premium here so Roe has wisely kept the décor unfussy – think white-tiled walls, retro bulkhead lights, shelves lined with wine bottles and two long communal tables made from reclaimed wood.
What's the food like at Roe?
The menu – peppered with Irish ingredients – is made up of small and large plates – the former of which especially impress. Squid ink and Guinness soda bread is earthily soft and crumbly, matched with umami seaweed butter and a light yet rich whipped cod’s roe. Salty battered anchovies are a clever twist on classic whitebait.
Raw squid is playfully sliced into soft, slippery ‘noodles’ – dressed in a punchy, addictively spicy fermented chilli sauce, while meaty yet delicate grey mullet ceviche is pepped up by a dash of poitín (a clear Irish spirit) that you can also order a shot of as a chaser to the dish.
There’s only one dessert on the menu but it hits the spot: stout cake with chocolate soil and Baileys-spiked cream is a satisfyingly rich, boozy conclusion to the meal. Check out more Baileys recipes here.
And the drinks?
Simon sources all of his spirits from the environmentally friendly Sustainable Spirit Co, serving up the likes of honey and pear margarita, and plum and thyme prosecco smash.
olive says: Light, imaginative and elegant dishes deliver on flavour at this welcome new addition to Pop Brixton.
Words by Hannah Guinness
Photographs by Justin de Souza