Eats and treats

Earlham St Clubhouse – London

In the Seven Dials area of London and fancy a pizza and a cocktail? Head for Earlham Street and the Earlham Street Clubhouse. You are in for a treat.

It was quiet that noon-day lunch time and apart from chef, three front-of-house staff and two young couples, we were on our own. Did I say quiet? Not exactly, toe-tapping jazz was coming out from the juke box which absolutely fitted in with the theme of this subterranean pizza and cocktail parlour.

Retro New York

Parlour isn’t the right word either! This is retro New York. It’s fun and funky. The walls and sometimes the ceiling are either reclaimed wood panelling or brick, covered in old American advertising signs and posters. The seats are in some kind of distressed suede. There are cosy booths tucked away down passageways; a vintage gas pump dispenses beer, phones in the shape of red high heels link some of the plain wood tables and the lighting is in a league of its own. There is a huge bar extending along one wall with pull-down cocktail menus and in a corner the pizza kitchen.

A Ross and Rachel

The only ‘either or choice’ from the kitchen is what sort of pizza you are going to order. They only serve pizzas. But no problem the pizzas are terrific – the best ever, we agreed. A selection of New York thin crust sourdough pizzas, wood fired and created by the award winning and very talented chef Toni. The toppings are highly original and delicious. Sold by the slice, or in 12” and 20” sizes, the pizzas are perfect for tearing and sharing, and range from £3.50 – £18 for a 20”.

We chose a Ross and Rachel – a 20”half and half pizza chosen from the menu so we could try two of the different toppings. Knife and fork? Forget that; though we did ask for a knife to help us cut the sliced pizza into slightly more elegant slices for our dainty fingers.

Jellybeans and cocktails

One of us isn’t a cocktail fan – but the one who is, reckoned it was a real humdinger – very moreish and on the packing-a-punch side of alcohol. Cocktails are from £7.50. We both managed a glass of wine – from £4 per glass. The service by the way was fun and friendly.

To make up for lack of coffee or dessert the bill was served in a glass tumbler – along with a generous helping of Jellybeans.

We both reckoned we were a bit too mature to feel really comfortable in Earlham Street late evening, but for lunch time or maybe a pre-theatre supper perfect. Though we did rather wish we could be a fly on the wall in the evening to see the Clubhouse in full swing. Definitely one of the best pizzas places we’ve experienced.

Earlham Street Clubhouse is open weekdays 12pm till midnight – and all day Saturday and Sunday.

35 Earlham St WC2H 9LD. www.esclubhouse.com

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