14 of the Best Breakfast Places in London

Wed, 18 September 2019
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Break the fast at some of London’s most loved breakfast joints. Our buffet-style roundup has a little something for everyone.

Capital brunches: full English fry-ups, top-notch porridge and the best restaurants and cafés to kick-start your day

Mare Street Market

This Hackney hangout will leave you spoilt for choice thanks to multiple dining spaces and a varied menu. Book a table in the Market Dining Room (our favourite space at the loft-style setting) and dine under a (ritzy) jumble sale’s worth of chandeliers – a room Holly Golighty would be only too willing to dine in .

26 Grains

Not all porridge is created equal. At 26 Grains, diners can choose between sweet or savoury bowls of oaty goodness from 8am. Proving that porridge isn’t always as viritous as it appears, we refer you to our personal favourite, the “Hazelnut and Butter”. Combining oats, butter, cinnamon sugar, apple and hazelnuts, this dish will keep you full from breakfast through to lunch. Prices cap at £6.50 per bowl.

Rochelle Canteen

Though Rochelle Canteen has a sister restaurant at the ICA, we’re sticking with the original and taking our runny eggs and generously buttered sourdough toast to “eat in” at its Arnold Circus venue. Don’t be deterred by the bike shed exterior – this is a great spot for a solo bite or a powwow with pals in minimalist surrounds with a neighbourly vibe.

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Thomas’s Café

Tucked off Regents Street, this all-day café is at its best at breakfast (note: the tables upstairs provide an added sense of occasion). Make like Thomas Burberry and order pinhead oatmeal porridge with toasted seeds and spiced plum compote followed by Eastleach bacon with scrambled eggs. (Full disclosure: we have no factual evidence whatsoever to support that was ever Thomas’ breakfast order – we just know it’s very, very good.)

Opso

Proof that Marylebone has a strong brunch offering beyond ritzy Chiltern Street, Opso is a food spot for those in the know. At the modern Greek eatery, freshly baked breads and pastries stave of hunger while you wait for your main squeeze (and by that we mean Opso’s apple-crumble French toast). Wood-finished interiors and sun-drenched surrounds are the cherry on top of our very berry pancakes.

Farm Girl

With multiple postings across town, Farm Girl’s first born in Notting Hill remains our firm favourite. Join the snaking queue on a Sunday morning as you wait in line for your just rewards – buckwheat berry pancakes and acai bowls – at this pastel-hued haute haunt.

No 196 Chiswick Fire Station

At Chiswick’s most photogenic breakfast spot, sofas come finished in pink-and-cherry velvet, cacti fill every vacant corner and coffee is aromatic and served piping hot. Plonk yourself in a cosy booth and stretch out with the papers. Keep a pile of pancakes in your immediate eyeline and your pup at your feet – yes, even precious pooches are welcome here.

Jikoni

Not all brunch menus are created equal. Jikoni’s weekend offering of sweetcorn
pancakes, spicy creamed corn, topped with fried egg and jalapeno relish alongside fenugreek waffles with tamarind-glazed bacon and fennel slaw makes this evident. The neighbourhood restaurant’s mixed culinary heritage results in flavoursome feasting. As for its block-print table settings – practically perfection.

Milk Beach

Staying true to its Aussie roots, Milk Beach serves brunch all day, err’day. We’d like to be able to recommend something other than Granny Elly’s banana bread (with espresso cream cheese on the side), but honestly when you taste something this good there’s no sense in deviating from it.

Café Miami

Delivering endless photo-ops (and tasty brunch dishes too), this North-Hackney eatery is best-suited to sweet-toothed diners. From the candy floss walls (and art-deco, Miami-style graphics) to the toothsome array of pancakes and baked treats, at Café Miami breakfast always ends on a (sugar) high.

202

Heed our advice when dining at 202: take turns waiting in line. At this Westbourne Grove restaurant-cum-shop, while one half of your “party of two” wades through racks of brushed-silk shirts and cashmere knits, the other can peruse the food offering. When your name is called, snappily order pain au chocolat for the table – then rescan the menu to be extra sure of your order (we’d go with the eggs benedict).

Honey and Co.

While we’ve managed, with some level of success, to recreate the plates that appear from Honey and Co.’s kitchen (thanks to its eponymously named cookbook). The tiny (we’re talking 20 covers, max) diner serving traditional, homey Middle-Eastern fair is open from 8am. We’ll see you there for its classic, designed-to-be-shared, “big breakfast” – £19.50 per person will get you a bread selection paired with creamy hummus, zaatar, tomato and feta salad, olives and pickles, as well as ashura cereal, yogurt and fruit, a slice of fig loaf, followed by your choice of eggs. Anyone else already full?

Towpath Café

A weekend canalside ramble should always end at Towpath Café. From 9am on weekends (or 8am on weekdays) take pause at this kitsch, hole in the wall and grab an al-fresco bite. Claim a beaten-up chair in one of the café’s adjoining shallow units, then tuck into fried eggs on toast or granola with yoghurt, fruit and maple syrup for brekkie. While your food digests, watch the swans swim in concentric circles, them grab flapjacks to go for when you’re next feeling peckish.

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