As shops, restaurants and pubs up and down Kingsland Road fall to the army of hipsters making this part of London their home, Faulkners soldiers on in a defiantly old-school way. The takeaway side does a brisk trade; on the right is a surprisingly formal restaurant, with quaintness added by mock wooden beams, a fish tank and dimpled windows.
The food is similarly from a bygone age (as is the soundtrack – Phil Collins, Jennifer Rush). To start, there’s prawn cocktail, scampi, fish cakes, rollmops or mussels. Catch of the day (cod, haddock, plaice, rock, salmon) is fried in batter or matzo meal, or grilled. Accompaniments are chips or boiled potatoes, and a standard portion of mixed veg.
All this, plus the heavy napkins, net curtains and service from a weary old waiter, should be a classic nostalgic dining experience – the problem is that the food isn’t quite as good as it should be. Chips are a little wan, tartare sauce all mayo and no punch. A grilled plaice was generous but slightly soggy. Tradition is fine, but it’s not always enough.
424-426 Kingsland Road
|Opening hours:||Lunch served noon-2.30pm Mon-Fri. Dinner served 5-10pm Mon-Thur; 4.30-10pm Fri. Meals served 11.30am-10pm Sat; noon-9pm Sun|
|Transport:||Tube: Haggerston rail or bus 67, 149, 242|
|Price:||Main courses £10-£18.90. Set meal £16.90 2 courses|
|Do you own this business?|
Average User Rating
2.5 / 5
- 5 star:1
- 4 star:0
- 3 star:0
- 2 star:2
- 1 star:1
I used to love Faulkners but what has happened to it? Possibly new management? I dined in and my cod and chips was disappointing; overcooked, soggy fish and the chips were there usual wan selves. Mushy peas OK though! The vinegar had an odd, metallic flavour that suggested some cheap stuff had been bought in bulk; not good when my cod and chips with a jellied eel starter and a bottle of Sauvignon Blanc topped £38. Think twice about this place now.
The only good thing about Faulkners is that if you arrive just as they're closing up you'll be treated to some freebies with your oders, with any luck one of their admittedly pretty fine fish cakes - but that's any fish shop no? Fish is inconsistent, chips are awful, and the frier is forgetful, so orders take longer than they should when the smiley ladies working the take out counter remind him he hasn't fried the scampi you ordered 15 minutes before. Which leads to more freebies, often a cup of their radioactive looking mushy peas in a polystyrene cup. Yummo.
A not so hidden gem in the middle of Dalston. Where else would you find Prime Halibut of the World alongside homemade fishcakes? No-where. And when you add the talents of the frying man, psychic Natasha and other matey (who work tirelessly and with great humour in the takeaway section) this that makes Faulkner a very special place.