Where The Pancakes Are
Located at street-food hotspot Flat Iron Square – itself dangerously close to Wallpaper’s Southwark HQ – Where The Pancakes Are impressed when it opened last year, clinching a Wallpaper* 2017 Design Award. Describing itself as ‘a not so traditional pancake house’, grown-up buttermilk blinis are served alongside carefully matched proseccos and craft ciders.
Where The Pancakes Are
The interiors of the cafe reflect the brand’s revolution in pancake sophistication. Tucked inside a railway arch, windows stretch all the way up to the curved ceiling, and a neutral colour palette is marked by explosions of green foliage cascading over wooden chandeliers. Don’t be fooled into thinking things are completely adult and sensible. Where The Pancakes Are is celebrating Shrove Tuesday with pancake-flipping races on the forecourt, and a boozy late opening. Bring your own frying-pan (seriously).
Indian restaurant Indigo has this month opened a new location in Boxpark Croydon. For pancake day, it presents a refined, contemporary version of traditional dosa pancakes. Served with masala potatoes and all the usual Anglo-Indian chutneys, Indigo’s dosas provide a spicy antidote to the Shrove Tuesday sugar high.
Les Deux Amies
Appropriately titled, crêperie Les Deux Amies was established by two friends, Caroline and Adelaide, who moved to London in 2014, and missed homestyle French cooking. Also located in Boxpark Croydon, they’ve picked two sweet crêpes to offer for Shrove Tuesday. The house special features Nutella, caramel and cookies (pictured left); while the ‘Mojito’ (right) comprises lashings of mango, rum, lime, Greek yoghurt and mint.
Trust the world-renowned chefs at the recently renovated Blakes Hotel to make pancakes pretty. For a luxurious Shrove Tuesday brunch, they’ve whipped up a delicate take on a traditional, USA-style mixed-berry pancake, topped with maple syrup. Presented in the atmospheric, orientally-inspired restaurant on the first floor, the extravagant treat aligns with the restaurant’s branding as ‘a sensual and esoteric place of unconventional luxury’.
No 197 Chiswick Fire Station
Warm, fluffy ricotta pancakes are the order of the day at ‘local, neighbourhood’ bar No 197 Chiswick Fire Station, where chefs have laid on a number of Shrove specials. They include a smoked salmon, crushed avocado and dill number (which we recommend you pair with an appropriately fiery Bloody Mary) and a banana and butterscotch iteration (the latter for the aggressively sweet-toothed).
No. 197 Chiswick Fire Station
Our favourites, though, have to be the blueberry ricotta pancakes with crème fraiche and maple syrup, which cleverly balances sweet and savoury elements. Everything on the menu – pancake specials included – is fresh and ‘scratch-cooked’, with an emphasis on well-sourced ingredients.
Though not strictly speaking pancakes, Nordic Bakery’s semla buns were too good to miss off the list. These cardamom-spiced wheat buns are a Shrove Tuesday treat enjoyed across Scandinavia, associated with Lent. Nordic Bakery’s petite, always-busy Seven Dials outpost (pictured left) has a tip-top riff on traditional semla. Usually filled with almond paste and milk, here they’re packed with blueberry jam and a scoop of whipped cream, topped with a light dusting of icing sugar.
No 11 Pimlico Road
Next up: Belgravia, and the light, high-ceilinged enclaves of No 11 Pimlico Road. The airy interiors complement the particularly light and fluffy pancakes on offer, served on sharing platters and of which the classic blueberry is a particular hit.
No. 11 Pimlico Road
Like No 197 Chiswick Fire Station, No 11 has opted for ricotta pancakes. A spoonful of soft cheese dunked into the batter helps to create an even creamier, custard-like texture, without altering the sweetness.
Established in 1927, L’Escargot is an oft forgotten gem on Greek Street. More traditional than most, this London stalwart is offering a special crêpe menu throughout Shrove Tuesday week (27 February – 3 March), sending half of its proceeds to London charity Centrepoint. Dine on a savory mushroom crêpe or a piquant raspberry ‘cake, while actual artworks by Miró, Warhol and Picasso loom over you.