Beetroot is one of the most fashionable ingredients around and East European food is currently all the rage.

Beetroot is one of the most fashionable ingredients around and East European food is currently all the rage. Baltic is the best exponent of these two trends. What's more, it's a mere vodka shot away from that other temple of cool, the Tate Modern. Housed in a former coach works building, this spacious restaurant, designed by Seth Stein, specialises in modern Polish and Russian food, with Armenian, Georgian, Latvian and Lithuanian influences. The striking interior boasts a glass-topped atrium, smart white tablecloths, amber chandeliers and sculptures, while the menu includes such delights as venison with honey-roasted pears and sour cherries, and potato dumplings with spiced veal and wild mushrooms. Caviar and blinis abound in a menu that successfully marries the modern with the traditional - and the desserts, such as white chocolate cheesecake, are legendary. There's also a long bar area with cosy alcoves, comfy banquettes, vivid artwork, an amber wall and rows of pickles and cigars. Polish and Siberian vodkas make up the drinks list, including some of the best cocktails in London, such as caramel vodka and infusions made with rose petals and rowan berries.

Baltic, 74 Blackfriars Road. London 020 7928 1111, Mon-Sun 12-3pm, 6pm-11pm. Meal for two, excl wine: £30

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