Sunday, 8 November 2020


Seafood modern counter dining

Oyster taco, gentleman’s relish

Kitchen table/counter dining as a concept is somewhat a rising trend in the UK, great if you are a serious foodie wanting to be up close to witnessing all the dishes preparing in front of you. I personally enjoy such a concept so when I hear there is a new counter dining restaurant launching with a focus on seafood, I have added to my to-visit list right away. With 18 seats only surrounding the open kitchen. The chef behind it is Andy Beynon, the former development chef for Jason Atherton. So on paper, you just know the cooking would be of good quality. Behind only serves a tasting menu, which contains 8 courses, and every dish is served by a chef, along with a sommelier who takes care of the drinks. All the table service are done by the chefs too.

Native Lobster muffin

Mushroom ‘tea and toast’
Crab, jelly, plum, cardamom
Roasted Hake, cockles, sherry

The tasting kicked off with some canapes sizes dishes, the Cornish blue lobster muffin was the best of the lot, I enjoyed the yuzu dressing which really uplifted the natural sweetness of the fresh lobster. The mushroom course contained no seafood but was solid, the hen of the wood mushroom had a lovely chewy texture with just the right tone of earthiness, the thin layer of parmesan crisp act at a great combination with its bold salty umami taste, it was a classic flavour done in a modern and clever way. The roasted Hake dish was the highlight of the evening, the fish was cooked perfectly, very moist and finely seasoned. It came with a sherry sauce that offered a soft dry and sweet taste, which uplifted the savouriness of the whole dish, it was wonderful.

Chefs at work

Guinea Fowl, Pumpkin and seed
Chocolate, salted pine and ricotta

Behind as a concept really tick for me, the food was great and the experience itself was fun as I always enjoy engaging with the chefs. I visited when the restaurant was only 2 weeks old so for sure it was far from perfect, I found a shell in my crab course, and some chefs are better than others when it comes to communicating with diners, but nothing major. I think the concept does works and for 68 pounds to have a proper fine dining level meal with some great quality seafood ingredients used, it is a pretty decent value as far as London standard goes. Behind opened at perhaps the worst time with COVID 19 really has an impact on the restaurant industry, but once that is all behind us, I can see it does really well and I wish Andy and team all the best.

Food 3.5/5

What I paid:
£125 with wine

Average cost without drinks and services:

20 Sidworth St, Hackney, London E8 3SD

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