All Star Lanes

The scene: Filled to the gunnels with indie types in search of some grub after a game of all American bowling, All Star Lanes’ Brick Lane restaurant is your typical all American diner. The bright leather booth-style seats are brash and the red, white and blue theme isn’t confined to the US flag hanging on the wall.

The grub: The menu has just been given a some extra fine-dining touches, so as well as the likely culprits of BBQ ribs, Texas chili and the All Star 1/2lb prime beef burger, you can pick from dishes such as truffled wild mushroom and porcini soup, roasted pork belly and beef Carpaccio. We opt for English asparagus with poached egg and hollandaise to start, which is a beautiful contrast between crisp, comforting and sharp.

The Asian-style seared tuna steak is pink-centred and tender, and its accompanying wilted Asian greens are swimming in ample quantities of a chilli and soy-laced sauce. It all feels incredibly grown up after ribbing each other over poor bowling skills and requests to put the sides up, so we end on a decadent and chocolatey rocky road sundae, which has the welcome extra scoop of coffee flavour ice cream as well as chunks of fudgey brownie.

Behind the bar: The six-metre-long copper bar stocks premium and rare American spirits and aged bourbons. Beers and speciality cocktails are classic American and the All Star Julep is refreshing, sticky-sweet and intoxicating. For the even more sweet-toothed, there are alcoholic milkshakes, but if you’re feeling sophisticated, there are champagnes and a longer-than-your-usual-diner wine list.

Bill please:
Cocktails from £5.95; starters from £5; mains from £9 for a burger to £17 for a sirloin steak; desserts from £5.50.

This is still a fun venue (with its bowling, karaoke booth, live music and clubnights) and it hasn’t lost its sense of excitement. Like its clientele, it has grown up and refined its tastes, but it still knows how to have a good time.


95 Brick Lane, E1 6QL 
Tube: Liverpool Street; Shoreditch High Street

– Clare Vooght