Acorn House, King's Cross
69 Swinton Street
0207 812 1842
by Blake Pudding
“You’re not going to bore us about organic food this year are you?” Stephen Fry-Up asked me over late night sherrys. “It’s just a bit dull you banging your anti-organic, anti- ethical drum. It makes you sound like James Delingpole.*”
This drunken, nearly-forgotten conversation jumped into my consciousness as I waited for Ian Tucker from the Observer for I was sitting in the non plus ultra of ethical restaurants, Acorn House. It would be too easy and, yes Stephen, dull to take pot shots at the worthiness of this place so I am going to review it on the food, service and general ambience alone.
The place was nearly empty but the food was not forward in coming forwards. This hiatus was quickly explained by the presence of a camera and lighting crew in the kitchen filming near-celebrity head chef Arthur Potts-Dawson going about his morning routine. At one point APD himself came over and tried very forcefully to give us the wrong breakfasts before scuttling back to his media career. When the right breakfasts did appear they were lovely. The scrambled egg was impossibly rich and, well, eggy. They tasted like they had been laid by the happiest, most attractive hens in Hackney and then rushed to King’s Cross by bicycle courier. The bacon was meaty but very salty. The bread was unremarkable.
Ian was a bit disappointed by the blandness of the interior. He was hoping for something a bit more wattle and daub but I suppose you don’t want to scare away the non-environmentalists. Having had lunch here a few times, I can vouch for the deliciousness of the ingredients and the generally high standards in the kitchen. It isn’t cheap but considering all the hand-wringing and head-scratching that goes into every morsel, neither is it very expensive.
*James Delingpole is a novelist and columnist for the Spectator. Despite being youngish and into rock n’ roll he is also quite right wing.