The Forge in Shoreditch is an interesting space. It is part of a setup which offers short/long term desk rental, meeting rooms for hire and social spaces. It is great for freelancers or sole workers who just don’t have the capacity to have a full-on office space, but need an affordable professional base for a dedicated mail address, meeting facilities etc. Rental is via a monthly membership which gives you a desk, WiFi, discounts on meeting rooms and more. Call it a business centre if you will, but certainly with a much more funky and modern approach to it.
Their casual dining space is open to residents and outsiders alike. Even better, as a Tastecard holder, you can enjoy 50% off food all day, every day (a rarity for member restaurants).
The Forge is light and airy, with restaurant tables dedicated to the left and a sprawling lounge space to right. My favourite spot is on the large sofas next to the floor to wall windows where you can people watch whilst sipping on a chilled chardonnay. They have a small wine list and a solid cocktail offering.
In the restaurant, the food is not cheap, so this little Tastecard offer makes some really good food affordable. The menu is simple with dishes categorized by sharing, salads, meat, fish and “others”. This makes it simple to get to the nitty gritty of what you want to eat.
Recently for lunch, we opted to try out the 8oz Rump Steak served with grilled mushroom, tomato, watercress and chips. Whilst the welcome was warm, the service was a little bit slow. We went there on a Monday, so it wasn’t very busy – but the space is warm and welcoming enough and with the right company you can overlook this.
When the food arrived, the steak was cooked to perfection. I do like medium rare (more on the rare side). This is a steak-eaters steak, as it is full of flavour. Being from the backside, it is quite firm, but they managed to flash fry it to ensure the texture was not too tough. I had béarnaise sauce with mine, whilst my dining companion had peppercorn. The fries were crispy and a good portion size. We opted for a glass of Borsao, a dry Spanish Grenache blend red.
It was a good dining experience and the discount made it even better. What I also liked is that with the current controversy surrounding industry service charge and its lack of distribution to staff, the bill clearly stated exactly where your money goes. So there were two good things about the bill.
154 – 158 Shoreditch High Street
London E1 6HU
T. 020 729 0007