Serving meals on a chopping board or a piece of slate seems like the trend that refuses to die.
And this is despite the best efforts of the brain behind the Twitter account @WeWantPlates Ross McGinnes, who is ready to stab it with a fork. A proper fork, though, not one made of twigs.
Ross set up the account after a friend posted a picture on Facebook of what he describes as an "average-sized steak" which had been served on a large chopping board.
"It was captioned, unironically, 'that is a big meal!' It wasn't a big meal – he'd fallen for all this style-over-content gastropub nonsense. I searched Twitter for an account which would allow me to vent my spleen with like-minded people, but found nothing."
Ross decided to set up the account, which now boasts 100,000 followers across Twitter and Facebook, though he never expected to get that many.
He says: "One morning I went into the shower with 50 followers and by the time I came out I had 500 thanks to a retweet from foodie twitterati Jay Rayner. From there it grew, each national newspaper feature and radio interview piling on another 1,000 followers."
The worst thing he has seen, he says, are bread in a flat cap, croquettes in a shoe, bacon on a washing line and sausages in a dog bowl.
"Our followers draw the lie at messing with a full English breakfast though. If it's on a shovel, a slate or in a wooden crate, it's getting sent back to the kitchen," he explains.
He stresses that it's not necessarily the chefs who are to blame – it can be anything from the owners to TV series like Great British Menu.
"It's becoming less about the food and more about the 'theatre'. That's fine, if your beef Wellington presented on a scale model of Christ the Redeemer is perfectly cooked. If not..."
But he doesn't think the end is anywhere near. "It's too widespread," he explains. "The more restaurants try to stand out in an ultra-competitive market, the more they end up just doing the same as everyone else who are also trying to stand out. So they move on from mini fryers ad slates to the next level – shoes, hats and so on. In a year? We'll have to wait and see."
Taking criticism on board
One of the pubs called out on Twitter for using a chopping board to serve their food on was The Swan in Swineford, between Bath and Bristol.
Instead of ignoring the tweet or trying to justify the serving boards, the owner – Bath Ales – jumped in to say "We agree! Will be reviewing this. Thanks for sharing".
Bath Ales marketing director Karin Ashwell says: "We have a pubs operations team that is tasked with everything to do with the pub. So they would've purchased the board a few years ago when it was fashionable to do these things.
"But normally, when that runs out, people just go back to the basics of having normal plates. It's probably just a question of simple internal communications. We'd like to serve it on a classic white plate for a couple of reasons; firstly, the board is quite gimmicky and heavily subjected to fashion.
"And there is also a hygiene issue as well, although we always put grease-proof paper on it."