Amusingly the text for the Google entry on Fuller’s dining venue The Tea Merchant still reads : “Visit The Cat And Canary Pub and Restaurant in Canary Wharf, home of outstanding beer and cider, great wines, mouth-watering fresh food and exceptional...”
But, like the traditional boozer, whatever remarkable quality it had is now just a ghost in Fisherman’s Walk.
Either the mystery quality it had as the Cat wasn’t exceptional enough to draw the punters, or lucrative enough to stave off a revamp that puts food rather than beer to the fore.
In a world that gets its dopamine hits from constant phone-checking, alcohol is starting to take a back seat.
People are drinking and smoking less. If it’s not a dry start to 2017 it’ll be Septemperence or Stoptober.
But we all have to eat and, though I lament the passing of a Wharf stalwart, I have to admit its rebirth suits the mood.
The clean, fresh interior of The Tea Merchant combined with mountains of decently cooked food (try the hop and tea smoked haddock with mash and a poached egg, £15) will sit well with the kind of team who work together and lunch together.
This is especially true if they like fish, and what could be more appropriate than lemon sole, trout and cod served beside the dock?
There's a decent range of drinks too (including infused gin) and a pint London Pride slips down well beside a generous and refreshing Mozzarella and beetroot salad (£7.50) unashamedly designed to tickle the superfoodies with its pumpkin seeds.
Although thoroughly disinfected and swelled with extra private dining capacity, it's pleasing to see the spirit of the Cat hasn't quite died.
Someone's already stolen one of the glued-down tea caddies from the ornamental shelves.
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