Christopher's, Covent Garden
18 Wellington Street
London WC2E 7DD
020 7240 4222
by Sadie Frosties
I hate the art of Edward Hopper. You had the Nighthawks poster. I saw you buying it at the poster sale during fresher’s week in 1995. You’ve imagined yourself there haven’t you, sitting in that diner. You’re that guy, and that there, that’s your lady.
No you’re not. And nor am I. Although it would seem Christopher’s would really like us to believe it to be the case. Christopher’s fancies itself as just this kind of old fashioned American restaurant... Indeed, sitting in one of its velvety cushioned booths, I felt myself slipping into such an illusion and could almost forget the gaggle of lycra-clad 20 year olds drinking vodka cocktails at 11am on a Sunday.
With its attempts at inventive optimism, the food could also be compared (if, say, a breakfast review’s consistency was at stake) to the art of Edward Hopper. Hash brown with Eggs Royale? Weird, but excellent! I am of the unfortunate breakfast disadvantage of being unable to eat wheat products, so the presence of a crunchy potato rectangle cheers me up no end. And when I told the waiter of my lamentable circumstance in the hope of a stealthy muffin substitution I was met with a stony silence and a glare which suggested perhaps in my youth I’d nicked his wallet and slapped his mum. The muffins stayed.
Still, I’ll try to be objective. The poached eggs were really very good, displaying that bulbous, compact quality that I’ve never quite been able to recreate at home, and were not the slightest bit watery. The smoked salmon was thickly cut and abundant. The hollandaise was fine. The orange juice was, I’m told, outstanding, but I plumped for the coffee, which was abhorrent. The curious hash brown was the one part that felt the most authentically American: flaccid and eggy in a McDonaldsy type of way. It was something that even though every fibre of your body wants to, nay knows it should hate, another part of you is unable to stop eating it. But it’s disgusting! But I secretly like it. It’s how I really feel about the art of Edward Hopper.