Addis, Kings Cross: “Laid back service” but “great food” at this Ethopian place, according to web reports – OK, sounds fair enough, we have the whole evening after all. And the decor is just right – long couches, single seats with hide covering that look more like drums, light African pop playing. What a tempting menu, too – fir firs and wots and tibs, all mouthwatering and reassuringly authentic looking (not that I’d actually know, but…). We place our orders. The Ethiopia beer and the Casablanca are off so we drink Becks and Stella while we wait.

The starters do their job – lightly spiced sardine with a gloopily, tangily dressed salad; superior houmos – and we settle pleasantly into anticipation for the mains. Anticipation which stretches out for rather longer than planned. But, still, “laid back”. After more beers, maybe two hours after we sat down, six main courses arrive. The only problem is – there are eight of us, and eight mains is what we ordered. My meal, and Tim’s, are distinctly absent. I mention this to the waiter, who looks worried – he assures Tim his food will be along soon (it never arrives) and denies all knowledge of mine. Now to be fair I had changed my order, but to be fairer I had changed it on the recommendation of that very waiter, who said the number 15 would probably be too hot.

At some point laid-back crosses a line into incompetence. The nature of Ethiopian food – everyone’s dish dumped onto giant plates of injera bread – means the situation could be salvaged, and I didn’t go home starving, but it was a deflating end to the evening after such a long wait. And a shame, too – the food that did arrive was very tasty indeed, but I can’t see myself going back.