January is over. Say goodbye to dry dinners and clean-eating at Spitalfields’ own corner of the Deep South: grilled meat heaven HotBox.
HotBox matches innovative takes on barbecue classics with cleverly named house cocktails and great craft beers. Take the inevitable Bruce Springsteam (£9), which mixes
Kamm & Sons, whiskey, lemon and steam beer: the perfect drink to start up the evening on a fresh note.
We started the evening with a mix of starters. First we had the smoked bone marrow, greasy and filling as it should be, accompanied by onion chutney and a toast grilled to perfection. Next up was a light yet tasty 18-hours smoked beef taco, served in a corn tortilla with crispy shallots, chipotle mayo and chimichurri, the best option if you want to save yourself for the main course.
The real feast at HotBox however starts with the mains, great to wash down with fresh Kona Big Wave ale. You better come prepared: whatever you’re having, it’s going to be a lot of food. We went for the 28 Oz black Angus grain-fed beef rib, slow-smoked for eight hours and served on a giant board with pickles and BBQ sauce. So tender it falls apart, the rib is a perfectly executed classic.
The mutton shoulder barbecoa is technically a main to share, but I got greedy and finished it all by myself – I’m a great date. Accompanied by blue corn tortillas and tomatillo salsa, this dish is the essence of the meat feast, one that will immediately transport you to a Tennessee barbecue with a bite.
Take all of this and add an impressive set of sides – a cheesy, melty mac & cheese and tender crispy sweet potato fries – and you have an unforgettable dinner in a restaurant you won’t be able to leave. Not just because it’s good – also because you’ll be walking away carrying double your weight in meat.
HotBox made feel like I was back in Nashville for a second. I haven’t been able to have such tasty meat since then… But now I know where to go!
Pictures: Carolina Are, Hotbox
Meal for two: £80.50
- Bruce Springsteam cocktail (£9)
- Kona Big Wave beer (£4.50)
- Smoked bone marrow first (£6)
- 18-hours smoked beef taco (£6)
- 28 Oz black Angus grain-fed beef rib (£22)
- Mutton shoulder barbecoa (£23)
- Smoked Mac & Cheese (£6)
- Sweet potato fries (£4)