Newly reopened for another summer, Frank’s Café (actually a bar that also does food) is the sort of open-air venue that a competitive, cosmopolitan city as London should aspire to.
However, it comes with some caveats. The already notorious queues seemed to be worse than ever, even on hot midweek nights - if you time it wrong you might wait fifteen minutes just to buy a drink; ten minutes to hover for a table, and then another ten minutes queuing at the separate food queue.
The bar has a choice of Meantime beers on tap, and there's a separate cocktail bar too. The food counter this year is serving a vegan platter, mackerel pate on rye bread, buffalo chicken wings, paprika and pamesan corn, jerk chicken with potato salad, barbecue pork bulgogi, Peckham pastrami and house slaw – in other words, a decent selection of modish fast food, most of these dishes costing in the £4-£9 range.
But for those that like a lively scene, there’s a sea of sweaty twentysomethings to hang out with. The clientele seems much younger, more homogenous and consequently less interesting than in previous years – though the panoramic rooftop view is still worth the journey around the back of the cinema multiplex and up all those smelly stairs.
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