Is it a particularly British phenomenon that instead of choosing not to produce or buy this ghastly snot-flavoured plate-filler, we – or more specifically, Waitrose – instead expend so much time, technology and effort in farming, genetically modifying and painstakingly harvesting the little green bastards, instead of just cutting them out of Christmas entirely?
Occupying a dizzying pile on Soho Square, this bar/restaurant/events space is a rather kooky spot. It was pretty dead on my weekday lunchtime visit, the eerie quietness only emphasised by the dining room décor: a cross between Miss Haversham derelict-chic and a retro gents’ club, with old hunting prints on the walls, worn tiles on the floor and dusty books on the tables. The cooking is comfort-driven (though there is, of course, a superfood salad on offer, because #London2017). Of the snack-sized bits, a plate of crispy ‘chicken scrumpets’ were best: tenders by another name, well fried and supplied with a pot of passata-style ketchup. A main of braised beef cheek cottage pie was grand, with melty chunks of meat, a grilled cheesy top and an intensely buttery, truffle-infused mash so funky it could raise James Brown from the grave. Artery-furring, instant-coma stuff and all the better for it. I’m also glad I made the effort to shovel down a Soho trifle. It was floral and sweetshoppy, topped with pansies and dense with glossy vanilla custard. Clean eating? Nah – I’ll take it fattening and fad-free. More mash, please.
Venue says: “We have launched an exciting new bottomless brunch menu with free flowing bloody marys, mimosa, espresso martinis, beers, wine and prosecco.”