Brawn, Colombia Rd, Hackney, London, UK

Dear Ed Wilson, sorry to be so slow on the uptake here, but has anyone nominated you as the new challenger for the best nose-to-tail in town yet? Having been an avid St John-er, it took me a few visits to Brawn to decide, but I've been won over, and I'll tell you why. True, no one can touch a St John doughnut with a ten foot jam-filled pole, but no one can touch Brawn's sophisticated use of all things grown in the ground with a ten foot rake; and the holistic dining experience is improved for it. 

Heirloom tomatoes sing with a vivacious flavour that surprises even me, almost as much as my surprise at how appalling that phrase looks in black and white. #foodietwat . Beetroot salad, nettle soup and wild mushroom and polenta all remind me that the pidgeon/foie gras/pork belly need not always be the only hero on my plate. Vegetarians everywhere just held a mini-celebration, but probably too early, as I won't be passing up the lamb and ox dishes on offer at Brawn any time soon. 

Menu - 9
Atmosphere - 9
Originality - 9
Service - 7
Shifting my perceptions - 9

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