I hate slow service – one of my irritations in life!
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171 Bermondsey Street, London SE1 3UW
- London Bridge Station (0.8 km)
- London Bridge (0.8 km)
- London Bridge Railway Station (0.8 km)
- Contact us:
020 7357 6082
- Opening hours:
Note: there is strictly no entry after midnight on Friday & Saturday
22 reviews of Village East in English
-Foie gras burger: pricey but delicious. Definitely share-able.
-Club sandwich: pretty standard. Overpriced for what it is.
-Salads had generous portions and good flavor, but nothing amazing.
-Chocolate dessert was overcooked and disappointing
I'm hoping if I return I have a better experience as the place looks like it has so much potential. Could've just been bad timing.
Comment 1 comment on this review
bexb-d, 18 July 2012:
B was meeting up with her old Uni pals and Bermondsey Street seemed to be the idea place for everyone to congregate without too much transport fuss. A noon meet up was a little bit early for a full blow lunch so the search was on for a suitable brunch spot and after a bit of a google it was decided that Village East would fit the bill.
Despite my many wanderings up and down Bermondsey Street I had never paid much attention to this place and was pleasantly surprised when we entered. Lots of exposed brick, wooden floors and “designer” furnishings make this a deceptively large place which is very easy on the eye. We had a table for five near the entrance which was light, bright and good for a spot of people watching.
Our very friendly Irish waitress was chatty and very efficient. Menus soon arrived and a waiter had our glasses filled with water before we had time to even think about drinks; I suspect dehydration may be a problem for many weekend customers at Village East as the waiter seemed to spend most of the brunch session wandering round with his water jug regularly topping up glasses.
I’m a bit of late convert to the delights of the Bloody Mary but I am making up for lost time with a vengeance so it was a very well made Village Mary for me while everyone else stuck to coffee. The ladies all went down the traditional breakfast route while I followed Tory Boy’s lead and ordered the burger (worried about food envy yet again) which came in just shy of £15.
Our orders arrived pretty quickly and the chatter soon died down as we tucked in. Perhaps I have spoilt recently by too many top notch burgers as this one, while being fine did not quite hit the spot – possibly due to a lack of seasoning and the quality of the beef. The ladies seemed well pleased with their breakfast selections although there was a bit of a grumble about the fried eggs: one over cooked while another was very undercooked.
After more chat and a browse through the plentiful supply of papers we were ready for an afternoon stroll along the Thames.
If you are after brunch in the London Bridge area you could do worse than Village East – what the food lacks the staff make up for with their very friendly service.
Had a work night out here last week. Cool venue, friendly bar staff who didn’t bat an eyelid at a huge group of office people filling their bar and acting rowdy.
One thing that really impressed me was when about 10 o’clock I tried to order a round of jagerbombs for my team but they wouldn’t serve them to me. They had jagermeister, they had red bull, but they don’t do jagerbombs. The waiter took about five minutes to apologise and explain that they had all decided on this as a bar policy as its not really a jagerbomb type of place. Fair enough, I thought, you’ve got to have a system for these types of things, and nice of him to take the time to explain.
I've been to Village East a couple of times now. A pleasant place if a little pricey. The cocktail menu is quite extensive and there is something for everyone. I especially like the Borough Marketini.
Service can be a little slow as they make so many cocktails and there isn't much of a selection of beers. I haven't tried the food yet but if the quality is on par with the cocktails then it should be good but I hope the prices aren't too high.
I'll definitely be back to try further cocktails
I think its the posh bar and restaurent in a quitest bermondsey street... The food is great and the service as well, expensive but... Great cocktails but not many choice for beer drinkers... Good to try, and treate anyone...
I enjoyed a really delicious meal here, I thought the standard of preparation was very high as was the presentation. The pork belly I had for a starter wasn't the best - a little tough, but overall I really enjoyed the food.
I really liked that there was a cloakroom and someone to take your coats, I'd agree with comments that the place is upmarket but not too posh. The decor is nice, you can tell they are trying to create a certain ambience and it's a bit edgy. The lampshades seemed quite 1970s to me and a bit out of place, but some people might like that. I thought the tables were a little close together, which means it isn't great for an intimate meal. Also the toilets could do with some sprucing up.
The one thing that put me off was the waiting staff, they were kind of hanging around quite close to our table and chatting or they were chatting loudly in another area or they were staring waiting for us to choose our food. I felt a bit uncomfortable, but this could just be me being paranoid/grumpy (I have given this a 4 rating) or because we had taken a really early booking and the restaurant was very quiet. One other thing, the table wasn't ready when we arrived and no-one told us what to do. Gave us the chance to have a cocktail though and that was great.
Like HungryinLondon, we ended up here for dinner because we intended to go to Zucca, but, upon finding it was closed, went to Village East, as it was the only eating place we saw open that Sunday evening. However, I'm grateful my experience turned out to be very different than his/hers!
The bar area was surprisingly packed to the hilt given it was a Sunday. Thankfully, we got a table, even if it took the friendly staff a fair amount of time to set it up.
We had some difficulty figuring out what we wanted to eat, as I didn't particularly feel like having a burger, fish and chips or anything greasy and fried. Still, the options were interesting. I wasn't too sure what kind of theme they were going for as there were some Chinese-looking options on the menu, but, again, there were also burgers, steaks and other fried options. In the end, I had a chorizo and squid salad as a main. I loved the chorizo (I don't think I've ever encountered a chorizo I didn't enjoy) but the squid just seemed bland. Well, blander than usual. Still, given the limited options we had, and the state of my stomach, it wasn't too bad.
I really liked the vibe of the entire bar. It's definitely very cool and trendy, and - thankfully - not posh. It's upmarket, but not offputtingly so. If I'm in the area, I'll definitely pop in and try the cocktails next time!
Comment 2 comments on this review
HungryinLondon, 29 September 2010:
seems you were luckier than me! As bad as my food experience was, I have always enjoyed the cocktails there.
(I'm a her by the way :)
raistlyn, 30 September 2010:
I'll agree that the food wasn't fantastic (that's three stars at the most for me) but, yes, I certainly did have a better time than that with respect to food!
Ah, cool. I couldn't tell, what with the picture of the chilli padis. :)
For pictures please refer to
We were actually trying to go to Zucca but they could not fit us in, so we ended up eating at Village East, a trendy cocktail bar/restaurant roughly opposite Zucca on Bermondsey Street. I like going there for cocktails actually, they do unusual combination with herbs (e.g. thyme, sage) and I love their gingerbread old fashioned. I had never eaten there before so it seemed a good idea to give it a try.
Can I just say – the best thing about this whole dinner experience was the service. They were very friendly. They brought me the wrong starter, they did not tell us about the specials and we waited for about 15 minutes for our bill but they were still the best thing by far. Especially as they agreed on accepting our taste London card (50% off food).
The whole place seemed strangely soulless and the food was expensive and not good. We started with a small portion of the Village Summer Salad (6.6). A few leaves of tasteless green salad were decorated with a blob of equally tasteless ricotta. There also were some lonely pomegranate seeds and an even more lonely single spear of asparagus. I could not detect any kind of dressing, after I put loads of salt on it was maybe not that healthy anymore but at least we could eat it. Considering that this salad costs nearly 7 pounds it just went straight to the top of my ‘worst salads I have ever eaten’ list.
The other starter, Fig & gorgonzola salad (6.6.) was marginally better in comparison, at least it was not completely insipid (thanks gorgonzola!). But it was by no means a good starter either, they were too stingy on the figs and again I could have done with some kind of dressing.
This meal did not start well and it continued to spiral downwards from there.
The Black bream fillet (15.9) was maybe the best dish of them all. Having said this, it was overcooked and lacked any sophisticated flavours. The sepia ink around the plate looked cool (the presentation was in general really quite good) but did not add anything to the dish and together with the quite rustic potatoes it all seemed quite random.
The real disaster came in the form of veal escalope (17.2). I mean 17 pounds!! For a bland piece of meat with the texture of a shoe sole lying on beans that might be nice if you got them as part of your fry up in the morning when you have a really bad hangover. They should however not be anywhere close to a dish that claims to be part of a ‘modern and intelligent’ cuisine. And what did they think in putting this celeriac mayonnaise thing on top? I mean really, who makes up these recipes? Apparently someone who should not have become a chef…
We would have been so annoyed if we had paid full price for the food. Cafe Luc in comparison, where I just ate a couple of days ago and which falls in a similar price category, is million times better and you get what you pay for.
I always wondered why Village East was on Toptable (40% off) and Taste London (50% off) – now I know. No one would ever go there otherwise. For me, even for a quarter of the price, I want to enjoy my food. Village East is a waste of money, time and calories.
I've had two wonderful meals here in the last month. The food is delicious, fresh and nicely prepared. Also, it's the best mojito I've had in ages. It's a great spot for something special, meeting up with mates who like a lively vibe because you can stay in the bar area, and they do a great lunchtime which can just ooze on into the afternoon. Worth a second glance in a city the size of London
This is one of my favorite places to eat and drink in London. It takes a bit of effort to get to, but it's on trendy Bermondsey Street and worth finding.
The bar area mixes up original martinis and cocktails, as well as the classics. The drink menu alone is an engaging read. The bar itself is a rustic New York loft-style design. It's minimal, yet inviting. The downstairs bar is the perfect place to grab a drink while you wait for your table or friends to join you.
Dining here also lends a bit of the New York feel. I would order almost everything on the menu, but I am a sucker fortheir specials and am rarely disappointed.
The whole experience is good from entry to exit. The staff really takes care of you.
There are rooms available for private parties and I hope someday to be hosting my birthday dinner there!
We went here for Sunday Lunch, we had originally tried the Garrison just up the road but that was packed out. Village East was busy but they fit us in. On first thoughts I was concerned that it was a bit too formal atmosphere for a Sunday lunch as has an evening dinner look when you walk in. However, when we walked into the back it was a nice spacious, bright, laid back room with wooden seats and tables. The menu is really imaginative, a range of dishes for all tastes, immediately I realise I could eat everything. There is a good offer of two courses for £14.95 as well on a Sunday. It is a Sunday so I’m craving a roast dinner and opt for the slow roasted leg of lamb. It comes with roast potatoes, yorkshire pudding, carrots, green beans and mint sauce on the side. This is truly one of the best roast dinners I have had outside of my own kitchen. The lamb is tender and delicious, the vegetables taste fresh and are cooked to perfection. I’m not a fan of Yorkshire puddings but this homemade yorkshire was divine. Originally we set out to just have one course, however, the dessert menu lands on our table and we can not resist. After much deliberation I go for the Summer Berry Trifle, it is out of this world, absolutely delicious and wish I could have another! The staff here are extremely friendly and very organised. They have a number of cocktails on the menu as well which looked great to accompany an evening meal. All round a great place and will definitely be coming back.
Now this is a place that is just up the road from me and I always avoided it thinking it soulless and pricey. How wrong I was. Not only is it not overpriced but it feels like you are in your cool NYC friends apartment. The food is excellent, oh and I recommend a pitcher of Virgin Mary to start that slow post big night brunch. P.s. I almost didnt write this review cos I wanted to keep it secret.
I had my birthday party is Village East this year and it was a great venue. The reservation for group service was free of charge and the service of the staff were fantastic. They were arrange and getting people out of the area which I had booked and trying to reserve sufficient space as more of my guests arrived for the party. I had dinner there as well before the drinks. The food was reasonably price; however was a bit disappointing in terms of taste. It was generally a bit salty.
Drinks was great and the setting offered a great place for friends to gather and chat. Some of my friends went outside at the entrance for fresh air and it was quite pleasant as well…
On the whole, I would recommend this place.
Just on Bermondsey Street, this is a great venue if you need to hire a room for work meetings. It also looked to be a really good place for lunch too, but we didn’t stay long enough for that! We were here for a morning meeting and used the room downstairs. It was small but kitted out really nicely with a lovely big table and wooden chairs, and there’s a nice screen for those all important presentations. The only food we sampled was the breakfast pastries, which although very unhealthy and definitely not good for the fitness regime, were absolutely amazing – still warm and some of them stuffed with cinnamon, what more could a girl want! Sister to the Garrison public house up the road, this is a lovely venue and I’ll definitely be coming back to sample more of their food.
we had a work meeting in the private room here and they looked after us very well. Although the room is downstairs and a bit hidden away and doesn’t have a lot of natural light I can see it would be a nice place to have a private dinner. When i got really jealous is when we emerged back upstairs and saw everyone coming in for lunch.
This would a be very nice place to have an early Sunday brunch and then while away the last few hours of your weekend with a few friends. I need to go back when I’m not on office time!
Oooh Village East, you spoil us!
I came here last night for a wonderful dinner with the Webjam team. (Webjam was founded over several dinners in Village East so it’s clearly quite special.)
I can see why now. Tucked away on a street you’d be forgiven for walking past (I did, got quite lost) when i finally found it, I was greeted by a lovely lady and a really pretty bar.
We had dinner in the private room downstairs, not before being led through the entire restaurant (past the open kitchen) and feeling like we were much more important than we really are. nice.
Dinner was amazing. I had a few problems with the starter - I asked the waiter if the veal was free range (picky i know) and he forgot to check. When he did check, he couldn’t tell me and thought it 'might be organic’. Not the same thing. He then said 'but it’s tastes really nice’ and i know he was trying to help but it really didn’t so i had a lovely Ham hock terrine instead. Everyone seemed to have steak for main which was really brilliant. Perfectly cooked and as it’s quite a posh place, i was expecting it to be much smaller. The sides as well mean that a main dish creeps up to about £20, which is a lot, but the food is great.
The wine was good, the desserts were brilliant (I managed to have truffles, chocolate fondant AND a tiramisa martini so i can definately comment on how good these are!)
I’m never convinced by private rooms in restaurants, and I know it’s sensible if there’s such a huge group, but other than the bar, I’m not really able to comment on the 'vibe’ of the place. I seemed fun though. I like it here. I’m not sure the service was that good - I thought it was a bit slow - in the bar and while we were eating, but I guess there was a lot of us so it’s not a huge issue.
They do cheaper lunch menus if the a la carte is too pricey and hopefully i’ll be back here soon. I really like village east.
You’re in safe hands here with the both the bar, and their fantastic cocktail making skills, and the kitchen no matter what time of day you’re after something to eat (Sunday brunch is as good as Saturday dinner)
The interior of this place is pucka mucka. It’s got two bar areas, two dining areas, an open kitchen and a private dining room. get them, a dining room! One of the bar areas has cool leather sofas, a U shaped bar and is pretty chilled. The other bar does have some cool seating but its a bit more standy, as in people stand….around the massive porcelain bar (a bit like a bog but a lot nicer), there’s lots of wooden touches and clever finishes with the exposed vents, tinted mirrors, the lighting and floating music which is never too loud. Its pretty much the only place in the whole area that you can get a decent cocktail…in fact its one of the few places you can get a decent drink. Great wine list too. Bar staff are extremely professional, you won’t have to wait like a mug for a drink if its busy. Clientelle are very cool, lots of different folk, post-work in the area people, lots of locals, not too trendy, not stuffy at all. The restaurant itself is in two area either side of the kitchen, one area is pretty slick and takes on the the vibe of the rest of the place, the other is bit more low-fi like their other place The Garrison. Food is high quality gastro, it’s not that cheap but its no worse than any other top London restaurant…and most importantly, food is always delicious. Service is solid. And the wallpaper in the toilets is worth a visit on its own, you always tend to spend a few minutes longer in there than you normally would…unless you like hanging out in bogs generally…in which case I probably wouldn’t advise going to Village East, its an eatery you sicko not a cottage-fest! Is this a normal kind of review? Probably not, but people should make their reviews more like this. Who am I talking to?
This bar/restaurant is a bit of a hidden gem in this part of town. They have the most fantastic wines, spirits and cocktails on offer and a friendly bunch to serve them.
The decor is great! Good use of contemporary and retro fixtures.
Definitely worth a visit!
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