With its high ceilings, blonde wood, and pastel touches, Hoi Polloi is Scandinavian in looks but Anglo in personality. Adjoined to the Ace Hotel, the expansive restaurant is separated from the Shoreditch scrum by means of a flower shop at the entrance: a cunning deception, especially for a restaurant whose name means “the masses”. Still, the tranquillity inside is a suitable reward, as is the seasonal, accomplished menu. Snacks include addictive blackened sugar snap peas and chickpea fritters, and mains veer from low to haute: the crisp-skinned lamb belly with lentils was as good as the Hoi Polloi burger served with dripping-cooked chips.
Stay for an after-dinner cocktail, like the Meshigener Palone, which mixes vodka with almond and vanilla jam and pomegranate, and consider coming back for a hangover-curing eggy dish the next day: this all-day spot is welcoming from breakfast till late, provided you make it past the peonies.