The two London Rivingtons could be called the mid-market arm of the very smart Caprice Holdings group (Le Caprice, The Ivy, J Sheekey), although prices still aren’t cheap. The dining space at the original is calm and white, with crisp linen and enough of both formality and trendiness to gratify different audiences. Contemporary art such as a Tracey Emin light sculpture add a splash of Shoreditch cool.
Menus follow the distinctively British style set by Mark Hix, chef-supremo of Caprice group when the Rivington opened, using fresh, seasonal British ingredients from sustainable sources. The wine list offers an excellent choice by the glass or carafe. Which is all to the good, but the cooking for our Sunday lunch was pleasant without offering any kind of zip. Queenie scallops with garlic butter had mellow flavour, but hadn’t been cleaned properly; strathdon blue cheese and chicory salad, and Sunday roast rib of beef and yorkshire pud were decent yet anonymous.
Fish and chips was somewhat better than you get in most gastropubs, though at twice the price. Since the Rivington opens early, there’s also a big choice of breakfast and brunch-style dishes. Perhaps these are what to go for.