They say all good things must come to an end, and we the people have to deal with the ending of great things all the time, like the latest series of your beloved reality TV programme, the transfer window, or two consecutive days of sunshine. Processing the aftermath of these events might involve wailing through feelings of despair and regret, sitting at your local with a pint and your head down on the bar, or purchasing a new brolly. Eventually, you’ll need to move on - and we recommend doing so with a combination of comfort food (ideally with a bit of spice) and a metaphorical slap in the face to get you back to earth.
In these times of trivial loss, we head to My Old Place. And now let us explain why you should consider doing the same.
My Old Place is an old school Chinese restaurant that’s busy, delicious, and inexpensive. The menu consists of approximately a million pages of classic Sichuan dishes. There’s everything from your classic pork dumplings and crunchy gong bao chicken, through to the more adventurous section of the menu where you’ll find things like duck tongue and other delicious off-cuts. Everything comes in huge portions, drizzled in chilli oil, and packs a ton of flavour. No matter what you order, you’re going to leave satisfied.
But My Old Place’s overall atmosphere also makes it an ideal place to go when you need a little kick back into reality. It’s loud and slightly hectic, and the service will make you realize that no one cares that you’re upset Game of Thrones just ended. Your food will be dropped unceremoniously in front of you, and please don’t try to ask too many questions about the menu or if you can get a refill on water. This might be a problem if you’re in the coddling mood, but remember that you’ve come to My Old Place to get over self-pity and yourself in general, so it’s welcome. Nay, it’s bloody appreciated. If you’re looking for the kind of restaurant where they ‘explain the menu’ to you, East London has plenty of those.
My Old Place is by no means the best Sichuan restaurant in London, but it gets points for atmosphere and saves you a tube ride to Chinatown if you so happen to live/work in the area. Just don’t forget to bring a couple of mates to help you with the food pile and for their general mood-lifting qualities. And that umbrella.
There are few types of dumplings on the menu. Listen carefully: you want the pork ones that are at the bottom of the back pages. Also do not let the look of these dumplings fool you - they may look plain but they’re as moreish as they come.
A great veggie-led dish made up of green beans, chilli, and minced pork. Not exactly healthy, but at least it’s green.
Soft tofu in a wicked spicy Sichuan sauce, with the added delight of mince pork running through it. This dish is a must-order, and make sure your table has plenty of rice to eat it with.
You’ll need approximately five of these spiced lamb skewers. For yourself.
This is a good-looking dish but lacks the punch and heat that the other dishes have. Give it a miss.
Crispy fried chicken surrounded by chillies (of course). So good. So required on your table.