It has been 3 months since I moved to East Dulwich and I still don’t particularly feel like I’ve settled in.
Lordship Lane, its backbone, is lined with expensive furniture shops, wine bars and nice cafes, a far cry from the 24 hour Londis that I used to live opposite (in New Cross). Now I miss its impressive array of instant noodles and instead, I can grab myself a loaf of sourdough for Saturday brunch, previously unheard of. I don’t know why I reject it so; I imagine it’s because I feel more of an affinity to the skint art students of New Cross than I do with the moneyed young parents wheeling their prams along the Lane.
In any case, at least I have several nice pubs to pretend I’m still a skint student in. The most recently opened is The Draft House, fourth of its kind, which I was recently invited to for a burger and a beer.
Bedecked in its signature green furniture, I was amused to hear they’d used parcel paper for the wallpaper. ‘Foot-long’ pork scratchings are so before they’re cooked; once puffed up and ready for munching, they’re served poking out of a glass. Salty and with the right amount of squidge underneath the skin, these were a great little nibble.
The Draft House have their own take on the current on-trend soft-yolked scotch egg. Served with a curried mayonnaise, the meat around the egg is gently spiced with a little sweetness. A big beast, I managed 3/4 before I got scared I wouldn’t be able to finish my burger. If I liked beer more – sorry, it’s true – this would make a great Sunday afternoon snack with a pint. As it happens, it goes well with cider too.
The menu is split into 3 burgers, with a few other salad/pasta mains. I went for The Poke; a burger with chillis, cheese and battered onion rings within. Requested medium, the burger was a bit overdone but the chillis had a proper kick. I squished the thinly battered onions into the cheese and patty for easy eating, and the salad came on the side so that you could construct your own. Besides the over-cooking issues, it was a decent burger in a sweet, sesame bun. Chips were thin and crisp – my favourite – and skin-on.
With its wide selection of craft beers, The Draft House looks welcome to the scene; on a Wednesday night it was pleasantly busy, and not just with crusty-bearded beer nerds (I know, I know, beer is cool now). Now all I have to do is start loving beer and then The Draft House and I would be inseparable.
The Draft House
21 Lordship Lane,
London SE22 8EW