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London: breakfast and brunch...

ooglewoogle Nov 10, 2012 06:43 PM

What are your latest and greatest for the first meal of the day?

Previously we have enjoyed nice breakfasts at The Table and a cracking brunch of Turkish eggs at Kopapa. Still on the "to try" list is Modern Pantry and Caravan.

Where do you head for a killer breakfast? It needn't be posh or even a sit down affair.....anything you grab from street vendor/market stall/hole in the wall etc.....all recs much appreciated.

Thanks again.

  1. n
    nuts4food Nov 10, 2012 07:00 PM

    In the category of hole in the wall, Bosini in Mayfair around the corner from the Marriott Grosvenor Square was great. Full English breakfast with coffee for around £6.5

    1. d
      dcatki Nov 23, 2012 09:23 AM

      Tough to find in London...

      St Ali/Workshop Cafe for the beans on Toast
      Caravan for the honey roasted muesli (I add salt for some reason)
      G&T for the veggie breakfast
      Great eggs at the Pavilion Cafe in Victoria Park
      Modern Pantry always good for brunch but I don't crave anything there
      Banana bread at Salvation Jane
      Porridge at St John Bread & Wine

      Breakfast/brunch looks good at This Bright Field but haven't tried
      The pizza in the schoolyard at broadway market
      Lebanese bread in brockley farmers market

      Kopapa on my to try list

      1 Reply
      1. re: dcatki
        limster Nov 24, 2012 04:34 AM

        Another vote for Caravan -- I've had better meals att the King's Cross branch but haven't done any systematic comparison; is there any difference in quality between the two?

        Also like Workshop Coffee in Clerkenwell.

        If only they were open earlier, Royal China Club for dim sum.

        Anyone tried the breakfast at Maltings Cafe?

      2. h
        Harters Nov 23, 2012 09:35 AM

        As always, I'll offer up this website for breakfast reccs - and a right good read.

        My best pick from them - Diana's Diner, Endell Street (near Covent Garden). Superb greasy spoon.

        I'd also add in the caff at Borough Market (Maria's) which will serve you up the full fry-up complete with the London speciality of bubble & squeak.

        And, assuming you are happy to regard the Brentford/Kew border as London ('tis all the same to us northerners), then the Bridge Cafe, just off Kew Bridge, does the fullest of full breakfasts for around a fiver. And does a very good looking Polish breakfast (which I've not yet tried) - which seems to be the standard Brit fry-up plus fried onions and chips.

        1. m
          ManInTransit Nov 23, 2012 09:52 AM

          Caravan is stellar, very interesting brunch and superb coffee. Dubious service but we can all deal with that at brunch.

          St Ali more excellent coffee, had the most extraordinary pumpkin muffin there.
          Modern Pantry is interesting and good - I know what dcatki means though.
          The Gate does interesting vegetarian brunch but quite a limited menu.
          St John Bread and Wine
          The Wolseley and the Delaunay are not for every day but wonderful places to go once every so often.

          1 Reply
          1. re: ManInTransit
            klyeoh Nov 24, 2012 04:50 AM

            I'd second the Wolseley. But the best I'd had recently was at Bistrot Bruno Loubet:

            Any comments on Simpson's in the Strand's "Ten Deadly Sins" breakfast?

          2. prima Jul 16, 2013 06:01 AM

            Does anyone have a recommendation for a nice breakfast within a 10 minute walk of the Embankment tube station?

            I'm not familiar with the options in the area. I realize Simpsons on the Strand is relatively close, and would be one option. I would be interested in a breakfast that is lighter portion-wise than the breakfast at Simpson's. I suppose the Delaunay in Covent Garden is another option, but I was hoping to find something a little closer to the Embankment tube station.

            If Hounds have tried it, how was the hotel breakfast at The Northall in the Corinthia? http://www.thenorthall.co.uk/wp-conte...

            Have any Hounds tried the breakfast at One Twenty One Two in the Royal Horseguards? I found their dinner menu online, but couldn't located a breakfast menu.

            I also read on TA that there were some places serving breakfast on Villiers St. Are there any cafes you'd recommend? I'd rather breakfast at a cafe than a Pret a Manger.

            Thanks for any ideas.

            5 Replies
            1. re: prima
              Paprikaboy Jul 16, 2013 08:44 AM

              Kopapa up by 7 dials is close , 5 min walk tops and has lot's of lighter options for breakfast,


              1. re: Paprikaboy
                prima Jul 16, 2013 12:03 PM

                Thanks so much. :)

                1. re: Paprikaboy
                  prima Sep 9, 2013 10:43 AM

                  Just adding the link for the Kopapa sample breakfast menu, for future reference. Looking forward to trying it out when I'm in London.

                  1. re: prima
                    prima Oct 1, 2013 11:49 AM

                    We tried breakfast at Kopapa. It was a nice change from the English breakfasts we'd been having on our trip. I had the chorizo hash, and my friend had the spiced banana French toast with grilled bacon, orange blossom labne, tamarind raisin relish & orange vanilla syrup. I liked the chorizo hash, but my friend didn't think the French toast was very good (probably would have preferred traditional French toast to this contemporary take). Great coffee, friendly service.

                    1. re: prima
                      zuriga1 Oct 1, 2013 02:21 PM

                      We had lunch at Kopapa a few weeks ago. I had a delicious soft shell crab burger, but my husband had only soup, which was a small portion and much too expensive for so little. Kopapa does interesting food.. I'll try a breakfast one day. I prefer Balthazar for a good brunch, plus the atmosphere and service are lovely.

              2. l
                limoen Oct 1, 2013 02:26 PM

                Lantana does a nice, very pretty Antipodean-style brunch but it is busy, slightly small and expensive for what it is. But nice buzzy atmosphere and good coffee.

                At one point some friends of mine used to organise brunch regularly at Smith's of Smithfield but I haven't been for a while - I just wanted to flag it up as a place that has been a popular option for a biggush crowd.

                1. k
                  klyeoh Oct 1, 2013 06:50 PM

                  For something a bit different - Dishoom for its naan with bacon & akuri eggs:

                  8 Replies
                  1. re: klyeoh
                    zuriga1 Oct 1, 2013 11:21 PM

                    I passed there the other day, Peter, and thought that it had been a very long time since I ate there. Thanks for the reminder. I know they've opened in at least one other location now. What are akuri eggs?

                    1. re: zuriga1
                      klyeoh Oct 1, 2013 11:37 PM

                      Hi June, akuri eggs are Parsi-style spiced, scrambled eggs.

                      Actually, this dish first caught my attention when I watched Gary Rhodes' "Rhodes Across India" and one episode showed akuri eggs (spelt "akoori" in his website) being prepared in Mumbai by a famous Parsi chef/TV personality, Farzana Contractor - it looked so simple but scrumptious. Check out the recipe and video here:

                      P.S. - Farzana Contractor was the wife of the late Behram Contractor (aka Busybee), Mumbai's legendary columnist who also wrote Busybee's Eating Out column, which introduced eating spots in Bombay/Mumbai.

                      1. re: klyeoh
                        howler Oct 2, 2013 01:52 AM

                        hey well done peter - how on earth did you get to know about busybee?!

                        he taught a lot of us upper class twits about the very rich restaurant tapestry - cuisines from all over india - hidden away in areas we were very unlikely to visit. and that exploration taught us a lot about bombay. (jim leff did the same for us in ny late '90's but thats a different thread).

                        i posted a link to busybees columns here on chowhound a long time ago - wonder if it still is archived.

                        anyway, about akoori. each parsi household will make it slightly differently from another. but farzanas recipe seems very different! basically, akoori is coriander, onions, tomatoes and chillis softened in some oil and then eggs very gently scrambled into that mixture. no mint, garlic, ginger etc.

                        1. re: howler
                          klyeoh Oct 2, 2013 01:57 AM

                          I read every single (food) article by Busybee which I could lay my hands on - made easier these days through Internet. Those articles give me an insight into Bombay's eating scene and food culture - I hope your links in CH are still there somewhere.

                          When Behram Contractor died in 2001, it really was the end of an era. These days, I can depend on Vir Sanghvi, but he's no Busybee.

                          Now I'm hankering for akoori eggs! I'm going to try cooking some up this evening!

                          1. re: klyeoh
                            howler Oct 2, 2013 02:28 AM

                            here's the chowhound link - but sadly the link within to busybees archive is 404.


                            As Vir Sanghvi - ehhhh - allright. BUt then he's dealing with a different landscape.

                            1. re: howler
                              klyeoh Oct 2, 2013 03:58 AM

                              I usually refer to these archives:

                              This particular piece made me want to go to a place like Lahori Nihari pronto:

                        2. re: klyeoh
                          zuriga1 Oct 2, 2013 04:01 AM

                          Thanks for all the information, Peter. I'll give those eggs a try one day. In return I'll give you my recipe for lox and eggs. :-)

                          1. re: zuriga1
                            klyeoh Oct 2, 2013 04:11 AM

                            Let me know what you think when you'd tasted those, June ;-)

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