Dish of the Day: 24 hour dining
When I was first in talks about this job, I was surprised to hear we were planning to open on the weekend, and needless to say, astonished we were to be a 24 hour restaurant. I’m not going to lie, city job, cooking good food and weekends off were my initial thoughts, followed by ‘these guys are mental’ when I realised weekends and overnight were a reality.
I trained in 1 Lombard street in the city back in 2000 for four years, and it was intense, hard, challenging, everything a good apprenticeship should be. But we had weekends off and it was strange for the industry. The city was a ghost town on the weekends, as I sat on the number 8 on a Saturday going up Cheapside it felt like a scene out of 28 Days Later.
The city has changed a lot, with 1 New Change shopping centre and the emergence of Shoreditch on the City border, Petticoat Lane’s ever increasing popularity, and now, it seems, sky high dining.
At Duck & Waffle, evenings are busier than lunch, weekends are busier than weekdays, and over night we do enough business to satisfy most Saturday nights. That’s not being cocky, I’m just trying to articulate how we are the polar opposite of everything I thought we would be, especially for the City. I’m also not naive, being that high up is an obvious pull, but we’d all do well to remember what a double-edged sword that is. Being compared to such an amazing view of one of the most beautiful cities in the world is tiresome, but that’s all good.
As I read the handover from last (Saturday) night, we had 160 happy punters, none of which were wasted or abusive as so often happens in bars after hours, and quite a few industry people which is awesome.
So, will we see more of the sort? Who will be next to follow suit? Whoever it is I hope it’s soon, so at least I have somewhere to go eat when I finish at 2am…24 hour dining, food
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