A classic mid-Victorian East End corner pub, with Gothic revival windows at first-floor level and lofty ceilings. A long bar serves ale and cider from that venerable East End brewer, Truman’s. Neighbourhood suppliers are important to The Empress, with meats and fish from Victoria Park suppliers Ginger Pig and Jonathan Norris respectively, and coffee from Climpson & Sons. Head chef Elliott Lidstone’s great value bar snacks include whitebait and spicy aïoli; puffed pork skin and fennel salt; and cecina. Among the thoughtful mains are dishes such as smoked eel, blood orange, radicchio and hazelnuts; hake with black lentils, cauliflower purée and smoked almonds; or braised goat, harissa, sumac and yogurt. The short list of sweet things may include vanilla pannacotta, rhubarb and almonds. There are roasts on Sundays, a popular weekend brunch menu and a meal deal on Monday evenings.