The Dîner des Grands Chefs is in its third year, first they took their knives and expertise to the Château de Versailles, last year it was Gotham Hall in New York. Just 600 places are up for grabs as the former fish market on the banks of the Thames, Old Billingsgate, is transformed into 'theatre of food'.
Worn almost as a badge of pride by the likes of Bubble Dogs, Barrafina, Lobster Burger, MEATLiquor, Polpo, 10 Greek St and, of course, Dishoom, the no reservation policy might as well be a by-word for trendy, casual dining. It also means that if you get your timing wrong you could be waiting up to two hours to eat.
It's 7:45, we've been queuing for almost an hour and we're nowhere near the front. My friend's loafers are failing to keep her toes warm in sub-zero temperatures. My other friend keeps wiping her runny nose on her glove, and another has lost the will to talk completely. We are in the queue for Meat Liquor, London's restaurant du jour, waiting for what should probably be the best burgers of our entire lives.