My Dad isn’t quite my go-to person for the hottest new restaurant openings. He does, however, know London very well and occasionally suggests great long-standing London gems that I should try.
He’s been saying I needed to visit the Regency Café ever since I started the blog, and a few weeks ago we made it to this Pimlico institution. It was established in 1946, and is a bit of a café design classic - it was used in the film Layer Cake and the Vogue shoots taken inside are put up on the walls.
The menu offers any kind of traditional fry-up you could want, alongside home-made pies, sandwiches, and my favourite kind of British classics like ham, egg and chips. They also have daily specials, including curry and fish on a Friday, all washed down with mugs of tea. Diners order at the counter before sitting down, and collect the food when it’s ready – announced with a gentle booming across the room. It’s the perfect system, with the steamed up room full of a mixture of people from civil servants to kids on the rainy Friday, but only a short wait for the food.
My Dad went for a delicious mushroom omelette, chips and beans (a great stodgy combination), while I had the perfectly cooked cod with crispy batter, golden hand-cut chips and good old mushy peas. It’s a bargain – my lunch was the most expensive thing on the menu at £7, with lots of dishes around the £4 mark. It would be the ideal fry-up destination, and I will definitely be back. If a traditional British café like this is as good as the Regency Café, it shouldn’t change a bit.