Sunday, 1 January 2012

The Riding House Cafe, Soho, London

The salvage/brick/iron/wood interior of Great Titchfield Street's latest brunch spot is a hint of New York. In fact, the interior is divine. The sage green leather is a striking contrast against the industrial colours. Seating ranges from cyan blue distressed leather bar stools to soft orange banquettes and tattered armchairs. The lighting is a bit NY too - oversized lampshades and bare bulbs abound.

The breakfast menu ceases at midday, which was the first disappointment once we'd sat down to our 12.15 booking. Gone were the buttermilk pancakes with vanilla clotted cream and berries (£5.50), the avocado on toast with black pepper (£4.80) and the Orkney bacon sandwich (£7.50). However, some brunchy items remained on the lunch menu.

Chorizo hash browns with mushroom and poached egg (£10.50) sound like such a brunch winner I'm surprised I've not come across them before. They were a winner - a generous colourful plate and a crisp, salty, crunchy taste. I had the smoked haddock kedgeree with soft boiled egg and pea shoots (£13). It was good - tasty, hot, fresh and substantial.

The service took an age, despite our arriving between the busiest periods, and a mistake with our order resulted from the waiter not writing it down (cue rant on waiting staff not writing down an order then getting it wrong... St Ali: are you listening?).

Fun, chi chi and civilised.

Details: The Riding House Cafe, 43-51 Great Titchfield Street, London W1W 7PQ; tel. 020 7927 0840

More London breakfast spots

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