Restaurant review: Wigwambam @ The Queen of Hoxton, Shoreditch, EC2

Some nordic inspired treats from the Wigwambam

Some nordic inspired treats from the Wigwambam - Credit: Archant

Like the night’s drawing in, winter jackets coming out and supermarkets stocking Christmas decorations, you know its October when a massive tent appears on top of the Queen of Hoxton.

There Wigwam Bam has become a bit of an annual institution, heralding the passage of the seasons amid a cosy fug of warmth, food and drink.

You can smell the aromatic wood smoke as you make the rather exhausting five flight climb on to the roof terrace, but its a worthwhile ascent because the tent is enchanting; subdued lighting, the enticing smell of various meats cooking on the grill and atmospheric beats playing in the background.

To drink, there’s a variety of winter warmers. Hot buttered rum, mulled cider, gin punch and boozy hot chocolate all give the cockles a bit of a hug.

The theme of this years ‘bam’ is Eastern Lights – inspired by the Nordic Polar regions – and this is reflected in the menu. Elk meatballs are presumably a big hit among ice-dwellers and it’s easy to see why. Slightly gamey, delicately smoked meat swimming in rich gravy.

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Less adventurous, but also tasty were the wild boar sausages and roast lamb or pork with stuffing. Unusually for a barbecue, vegetarians get more than a token quorn burger – thick and satisfying vegetable stew and sausages are also available.

All the reasonable priced mains come with lashings of potato and red cabbage and are pretty much guaranteed to fill you up, or at least leave you with just enough room to toast yourself some marshmallows over the ubiquitous fire pits.

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It’s probably a bit of a stretch to suggest the wigwam is a dining destination in it’s own right, but coupled with the homely, congenial atmosphere and delicious hot cocktails you get a quirky and fun way to spend the long winter nights.

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