It’s safe to say this All American Diner lives up to the hype and is worth every penny of the £20 bill at the end. To a get a WHOLE lobster done as well as they have, there really is none other like it.
I’ve wanted to check this place out ever since my Facebook feed was flooded with updates, check-ins and what seemed like the smallest menu in London.
With an air of exclusivity from a strictly no-booking policy*, diners all over town have been tapping into their inner hipsters to get a piece of the action before it hit mainstream. I have no shame in admitting that I have tried to be as cool as.
My close observations and extensive data collection can confirm this restaurant is packed out every single night and it’s amazing how long people are willing to wait to test out the menu – 1, 2 sometimes even 3 hours. Through the cramped waiting area by the door, I couldn’t even get my posterior through the cracks of my fellow hipsters (no pun intended…) to the reservation desk.
The first time me and A arrived on a Thursday night around 8.30PM we were quickly turned away for a 3 hour wait with the possibility of being seated by 11:30PM. HEY don’t you guys close at 10:30PM?
The second time around with much better preparation, we arrived earlier at 7.00PM but still had to wait roughly an hour to be seated. After much deliberation and determination we decided not to succumb to hunger and find the nearest noodle shop around the corner again. So we took upon this chance to get a few drinks in the theatre close by, or alternatively we could have rubbed shoulders with diners in the small crowded bar in B&L with no seats or breathing space.
We came back after a call from the restaurant and although the wait was long, the lovely waitress quickly seated us and made us feel at ease. We were handed a menu with 3 options;
Burger OR Lobster OR Lobster Roll
+ Chips + Salad (£20)
Personally, I only came here with one mission in mind – and that was to eat some lobster on the cheap, unhinged by bread rolls, just lobster. You can either have it steamed or grilled, and I chose to have it steamed as the waitress recommend it would retain most of its juiciness that way.
The food arrived fairly quickly and it came with garlic butter on the side. Dousing is optional.
The lobster meat was so tender and flavoursome even without the garlic butter, and the salad offered a fresh compliment to wash away the potent after taste of the garlic butter. I could have done with a little more chips but that’s probably the greedy bottom-less pit in me crying out for more food.
We were also handed a one size fits most bib to wear – N.B. YOU MUST WEAR IT. Thinking you have elegant table manners at this point is futile and the lobster will inevitably start to flick everywhere.
Also N.B. Be careful of flying shells when trying to crack open the lobster claws, you might want to shield that beautiful face of yours and your date’s.
*With exceptions for group bookings of 6-10 people