Another week in London, another gastronomic mash-up that nobody asked for but everyone’s queuing at. This is a city that now boasts a Chinese/Portuguese ‘ricery’, a Scottish/Italian tapas bar and a joint selling Japanese/Caribbean sushi burgers – because the food scene’s new favourite thing to do is push two cuisines together like Barbies and make them kiss.
But hold onto your paper bib, because here comes the backlash. On the flipside of all that tiring innovation, a new crop of restaurants is retreating into the past instead, with kitschy kitchens, retro decor and menus from the decades taste forgot.
We don’t mean glitzy 50s Americana, either – call it quinoa fatigue, but there’s a growing appetite for flavours straight out of your childhood or the back of your Nan's larder. Potato waffles, chicken kiev, egg and chips, and posh riffs on Angel Delight. Rice pudding was touted as the ‘food of 2016’ earlier this year when Waitrose reported a rise in sales of the milky classic (with skin please), and even Spam is making an unlikely comeback. There’ll be a Findus Crispy Pancake pop-up before the year is out.
So if the brave new world isn’t for you, then how about the old one, drenched in custard? Here are the best places in London to take your tastebuds on a trip down memory lane...