Brunch is by far my favourite meal of the day. There’s a lazy indulgence in having enough free time to banish the usual three-meal schedule. Brunch allows you the lie-in that breakfast doesn’t and the feast without the worry of being too full for lunch.
Brunch is basically the perfect start to any weekend (or day, if you’re feeling particularly generous). And with this belief, has come considerable brunching experience, so here’s my round-up of the best brunches in London.
The Table Café – Southwark. Weekend brunch served until 3:30pm.
There’s usually a queue but it moves fast due to a slick and friendly service. Beyond the queue is deliciousness – a veritable array of seasonally-changing brioche French toast and pancakes, alongside the more traditional ‘Full English’ options.
The pancakes are divine – fat and fluffy and my favourite comes with the classic caramelised banana, crispy salty bacon and maple syrup.
The Veggie Borough is also incredible – buttered spinach, salty halloumi, herby mushrooms, grilled tomato and fried eggs on sourdough. As I’m not a veggie (I just adore halloumi) I swap the veggie baked beans for a side of their homemade ham hock and chorizo baked beans. As good as they sound.
Sandwiched between the Tate Modern and Borough Market, The Table Café is a great choice if you want to enjoy a lazy day of art or food or both.
Lantana – Fitzrovia. Weekend brunch served until 4pm.
Independent and Aussie, Lantana brings sunshine into even the rainiest of London days.
It’s clean and seasonal menu changes regularly. For those with a sweet tooth, their thick and rich French toast is a winner. Its current iteration is coconut French toast with sour cherries, roasted white chocolate, crème fraiche and toasted coconut. I mean: mmmmm!
My other pick is their infamous corn fritters stacked with streaky bacon, spinach, roast tomatoes, avocado and lemon crème fraiche. And of course, add chorizo and chili jam for an extra £5 – it is the weekend, after all!
My only watch-out with Lantana is that queues can be long (there’s no real shelter if it’s raining) and service can be slow. But the brunch deserves all the accolades it gets.
Greenberry Café – Primrose Hill. Weekend brunch served until 4pm.
I saw Jon Snow (of Channel 4 news, not Game of Thrones fame…) having brunch here which I think is all the endorsement one needs but…
It’s family and dog friendly – busy, noisy and has a mean brunch menu. And you can book!
Kedgeree with poached eggs is one of my favourite dishes – the richness of the yolks a perfect pairing with the smoked haddock. And they do great sourdough toast with just about everything. My preference is with poached eggs, portobello mushroom, hollandaise sauce and truffle oil… because it’s truffle oil.
For its pricey postcode, it’s very reasonable and you can stroll past the foodie stalls and onto Primrose Hill afterwards
The Breakfast Club – multiple locations. Weekend brunch served until 5pm
Yes, there are a lot (my fave is Hoxton – there’s a disco ball in the toilet) and yes there is always a queue, but it is worth the wait.
The portion size and pure indulgence is the stand out differentiator here. I basically can’t not go for the pancakes, they are literally the best. Fluffy, singed on the edges and STACKED. They served 928,000 of them in the past year so it can’t just be me…
Pancakes and berries (with maple syrup and vanilla cream) is my preferred variety but then again, I’ve never tried the Elvis – buttermilk waffle with caramelised bananas, Greek yoghurt, peanut butter and maple syrup, with the option to add bacon.
For those with a savoury disposition, the huevos rancheros is to die for.
Duck and waffle – Liverpool Street. Weekend brunch served until 3:30pm.
And finally, Duck and Waffle because where else can you get duck and waffle and those views?
On a first visit, it’s hard to order anything but the namesake dish because you sort of feel you have to and then on a second visit, it’s hard to order anything but because it was so nice the first time. It’s really only on the third visit that you crack it.
But back to the duck – it’s a crispy, generous, succulent portion, doused in a mustard maple syrup that dances somersaults on your taste buds and sits on top of a fluffy, sweet waffle.
You do need to book quite far in advance but this place is a treat – from the prices, to the 24-hour cocktails, to the breath-taking views over the city. The speed of the elevator is worth the trip alone…