Welcome back to Insta Stories, a column examining the London restaurant scene through the often-problematic medium of Instagram. This week’s filter is a pretty decent pun, actually.
News of the week
In the same way that Nicholas Cage’s performance in Vampire’s Kiss can be described as “extremely acting,” Circolo Populare — Big Mamma Group’s Fitzrovia sequel to Shoreditch darling Gloria — could arguably be designated London’s first Very Restaurant. This week’s launch party brought all the expected nudge-nudge wink-wink signifiers on a predictably extra scale, single-entendre giant sausage included. It is big, it is not clever; just like its east London sibling, expect it to be chock-full from here to eternity.
Coping strategies of the week
For what felt like the first time since about February, the sun finally shone this weekend – bathing the country in warmth and immediately occasioning complaints that it was in fact too hot. Cue the emergency warm weather protocol in the capital’s kitchens!
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Our Gelati Cart has had a facelift just in time for @winecarboot in Coal Drops Yard. We’ll be serving up pulled Beef Brisket Buns from @biggreenegg and a selection of Gelato from our good friends @gelupogelato see you tomorrow. It’s going to be hot... #vermuterialondon #vermuteria #vermuteria_london #coaldropsyard #kingscross #gelato #winecarboot
Suspicious package of the week
After the great BBC-Uber Eats sting, punters are starting to realise they should probably be a little more vigilant about the sort of vendor they blindly contract to cook their food. That said, this seems pretty legit, though, right?
Merch of the week
Portrait of the week
Name a more iconic duo... They’ll wait.
Dessert showdown of the week
The last time three siblings shared such a fierce rivalry it was called King Lear.
Dish (of the summer) of the week
The race to crown the ‘song of the summer’ is practically a year-round industry these days, with thirsty content providers looking to anoint practically any fun new bop a definitive contender. But what about something far more pressing: the best thing to eat and then Instagram this sunny season? Last year, the Katsu Sando was demonstrating ‘Old Town Road’ levels of dominance before the solstice had even passed; this time round, there might be a bit more competition. Will the Tata Eatery team go two-for-two with their anchovy toasts? Could the low-fuss, high-comfort fare at Darby’s spring a surprise? Or will it be the current bookies’ favourite, the instantly iconic hand-rolled macaroni cacio e pepe with crispy chicken wings at the new Wild Honey? Bring on the thinkpieces!
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Wild Honey St James, June 2019. Hand rolled macaroni cacio e pepe with crispy boneless chicken wings. Take me back to Rome. Simple and delicious. @wildhoneystjames @anthony_demetre #londonrestaurant #eat #food #lefooding #eaterlondon #pasta #macaroni #cacioepepe #chickenwings
Shot of the week
There’s probably a longer piece to be written on the rehabilitation of the Paris-Brest into one of the modern pastrywork’s most beloved staples. For now, though, note the whimsical pink filling, and prepare to see a matcha version in Starbucks in around 18 months’ time.