Save The Date is a chapter of The Real Junk Food Project. Based in Dalston, East London, it serves up meals of surplus ingredients on a pay-as-you-feel basis. They began in November and have experimented with different opening times. Currently, they’re open between 11am and 6pm, Tuesday – Friday.
One of the most exciting things about Save The Date, is that they built their own kitchen. They were very kindly given the piece of land, which was already full of garden space, furniture scraps and un-used flower beds. In only 3 weeks, the group had put together the cafe, complete with electric, lighting, plumbing and fire extinguisher! Without much surprise, most materials and kitchen equipment has been donated/up-cycled. There is a fire pit to keep one of the seating areas a bit warmer, but plans are to collect two donated sheds sometime soon, where people can dine more comfortable during the winter months. The place is amazing!
Some of the volunteers are restaurant professionals, including one of the directors – so there’s a real sense of catering knowledge. The food is all intercepted from local stores and businesses around the area. They are currently borrowing Snact‘s food interception bicycle, which is making it a lot easier to pick up large amounts of grub. While I was there, they were expecting a visit from a Health and Safety Inspector, which led to good conversation about the essential things I’d have to cover at Curb, Southampton. Lots of obvious stuff, but lots to think about.
After a really warm welcome and tour of there entire space (which I will say, is much, much bigger than you think!, I sat and ate with a group of volunteers. Again, it was amazing to connect with the people running this cafe. I’d met them at the Disco Soup earlier in the week, but it was so great to see them doing their thing! The hand-made kitchen has been a real inspiration and an important reminder of what teamwork can do.
Save The Date have donated a couple of great recipes to go into the book! I’m really looking forward to returning to there soon.
Save The Date is nextdoor to the Feedback offices, so I went to visit them too. We had a really exciting conversation of how they’re all going to be represented in the book!