Tin Canned

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Words Billie Jenkins Image courtesy of Paul Winch – Furness

A pop up restaurant has opened in London that only serves tinned fish. The menu, curated like a fine wine list, showcases the revered and obscure of the canned seafood world, the windows and walls feature rows and rows of the most eyecatching and design forward of the bunch, resembling a vending machine of little alimunium coffins. It’s all a bit dystopian if you ask me. Reports of the opening have placed a lot of focus on the tinned fish movements strong culinary roots, with some excitingly poncy French restaurants somewhere under Paris having served their fish like this for years, and the slow peel back of the metal to reveal some off beat Italian mackerel in oil being the toast of any foodie dinner party worth its salt. But has anyone noticed it feels like it would fit neatly into A Clockwork Orange? A slew of celebrity chefs are more than happy to explain why it’s a fantastic idea. ’I’ve known things in tins are better for years’ say Hugh, ’in fact I had my entire Koi pond vacum sealed in stainless steel about seven years ago so they’ll be perfectly aged for my sixtieth.’ Chris Morris would be all over it. Aptly named Tincan, it bears the tagline “best tinned fish in the world”, which just makes us want to add a ’probably’ to empahasize the oddity of the whole thing in a homage to definatly not the best lager in the world Carling. The brainchild of architect firm AI_A, the six month pop up venture is unique in the UK, and not something I’m inherently against. The idea of bringing a potentially quite delicious dining experience to an audience who still have pilchards on toast in their mind, and expanding their food horizons, is quite a nice one. But as a dining experience it would be hard not to feel you were entering into a cultural eccentricity with the same implications as a J G Ballard short, as if you were entering into a satire of modern values.

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