Restaurants devoted to eggs are hatching out all over the place. Resident eggspert Alexi Duggins has the scoop on the latest London food trend.
Sorry? Eggs are trendy? Eggs… as in the things that have been around since the beginning of life?
Yeah. Weird, huh? You’d have thought the previous millennia had given them plenty of time in the limelight. Still, no doubt about it, opening an egg-based eatery is the hip new thing for London chefs to do.
Let me guess: it’s a Dalston thing?
Yes and no. We’ve counted six new egg-specific outlets planned for the city in the last couple of months. But yes, Dalston is the site of the capital’s first 'poached egg bar'. Located in Beyond Retro, it’s run by the folk behind Soho café Foxcroft & Ginger, and the eggs are cooked sous-vide-style at 63C.
That’s very precise.
They reckon it’s the optimum temperature, as it lets you slowcook them for an hour, resulting in a perfect runny yolk to dip your toast in. The Soho House group seems to think there’s something in it too, as its restaurant Egg Break also features a leisurely poached egg on the menu.
Wow. I didn’t realise eggs could be so high-concept.
Strap in. There’s also a place in Fulham called Wings Eggs that lets you order an ostrich egg for £55 or an emu egg for £110 if you contact them two days in advance. Given that eating it involves mouthful after mouthful of inch-thick, gelatinous white and a saucer-sized yolk, our advice is: don’t attempt this solo.
Any other eggstablishments we should know about?
Yep, it doesn’t stop there. Celebrated chef Neil Rankin has opened a bar-diner called Bad Egg in Moorgate. Stoke Newington is soon to see the launch of street food stall-turned-permanent restaurant The Good Egg. Then there’s Chicken Shop, the fried-chicken chain that’s incubating a spin-off called Chicken & Egg. Sadly, no news on a place called An Oeuf Is Enough. But we live in hope.
The egg files: plates of the un-eggspected
Chicken and egg brioche
Know the problem with most egg dishes? Not enough deep-fried chicken. Not so with this densely packed beauty: fried chicken, egg, green tomato, red onion and mayo on a browned bun. A technicolour dream bite. Egg Break, 30 Uxbridge St, W8 7TA.
Runny-yolked scotch egg
Gourmet scotch eggs are nothing new, but weekend-only Dalston pop-up Yolk pushes the meaty envelope by serving it with a mustardy sauce and adding haggis into the meat mix. Properly Scotch. Yolk, The Proud Archivist, 2-10 Hertford Rd, N1 5ET.
Three eggs deep-fried till they’re crispy, slipped into a little metal balti dish full of Malaysian hot sauce then topped with cheese fondue and scattered with herbs. Fiery stuff. Eggsplosive even. Bad Egg, City Point, 1 Ropemarker St, EC2Y 9AW.
Image: Scott Chasserot
Want more egg-cellent news? A London restaurant has started frying whole ostrich eggs.