Though there is no shortage of restaurants in Shoreditch, the ever changing nature of the area means that is often difficult to actually select a place to eat. I had swithered with trying out The Jones Family Project since its opening back in November so when I received an email advertising a free Gin cocktail sampling I was sold.
Arriving a little early we hesitantly swung open the large glass door to the bright bar to be greeted by a cheery host whose enthusiasm soon put us at ease at about our uncool eagerness.
Seated with free popcorn (that kept getting refilled), a £2.50 happy hour beer and a shot glass of cocktail I was already content with my selection. The bar soon began to fill with punters straight from work and, though busy, the staff remained completely on the ball making sure that all customers were catered for.
I am easily embarrassed so often feel shy cracking out my camera in a bar or restaurant, however here it was encouraged – the cocktail waiter even helping me to get the best angle of one of their gin offerings.
I really liked 3 out of 4 cocktails, they all were very different in flavour so would suit most palates but I think my winner was Don’t Get in a Muddle which was made up of Hendrick’s, cucumber, rose, lime and prosecco which not only made me feel a like a posh Nanna with the combination of gin and bubbles but also because the citrus tones made it light – perfect for summer drinking.
After a brief financial discussion we had previously decided that we would just stay for the cocktail sampling however after a couple of drinks it seemed silly to end such a fun evening prematurely so we ventured downstairs to the restaurant.
The decor was quirky without being tacky and followed an indoor garden theme throughout which made it feel homely and gave a feeling of Alfresco dining. The main restaurant is large but is separated into areas by a greenhouse style structure creating a more intimate feeling.
Once we had settled at a nice corner table inside the greenhouse I took a wander around the rest of the space. Happily nosing around I was stopped by the friendly chap who first greeted us on entry.
He asked if I had seen the special 70’s table, I had not so he guided me over to the far corner where stood a dining room that was so carefully put together that it would not have looked out of place in a museum. He explained to me that every few weeks the table and surrounding area is completely ripped out to make room for a new concept that also comes with food to match. I loved the fact that they put so much detail and it was not just a gimmicky pop up.
After my little tour it was time to get eating!! First up was corn bread, when it arrived I was disappointed in its delicate portion size (as I have mainly had corn bread in America and am accustomed to a slab) however paired with the amazing chilli butter was a nice appetiser which I would not be kind enough to share next time.
The menu is very meat heavy so for my main I went for the garden salad which I know sounds incredibly dull. When it arrived I was impressed that they had presented a simple salad in such an artistic manner with splashes of colour and conflicting textures, it was not only pretty but also fresh and bursting with earthy flavours.
I was hesitant about trying out The Jones Family Project as I was concerned that it was just another soul-less mid priced restaurant that had crept its way into Shoreditch. Thankfully, I was completely wrong. This independent place is well thought out, friendly, atmospheric and if they continue to do things in their own heartfelt way I think will become a Shoreditch staple.
78 Great Eastern Street