Will anything ever change at this Soho institution? We doubt it. Stepping into the charmingly unreconstructed caff is like entering a culinary land that time forgot. The 1960s-ish decor consists of walls furnished in Anaglypta and wooden slatting, plus tables that seem to have been varnished time and again. The menu’s solid fare is all stodgy bakes, roast dinners and a school canteen-esque range of crumbles and sponges topped with runny, synthetic-tasting custard.
The real throwback is the bill, though, with most main courses costing about £6 and set menus letting you wolf down three courses for close to £10. As a result, the clientele tends towards shaky old gents hunched over slabs of stodge and chips, students eking out cuppas, and meedja trendies paying homage to an increasingly rare glimpse of old Soho. A word of warning, though: don’t expect to linger. When busy, the otherwise friendly staff can border on the pushy in their attempts to hurry customers along.