It can be hard to walk away from this view.
A doona, tented over toes. Sleep still creeping from your eyes.
Bed on a Saturday morning can be a pretty magical place (even if your mattress is lumpy and stern at the the curb like ours).
In these mad few months of traveling, Saturdays usually involve scurrying for some god early flight, or hurriedly scrambling out the door of a foreign hotel room, after arriving late the night before. The Hungry One’s quest to find the best coffee waits for no one.
So, if it’s a Saturday morning in London, to entice me up and away from my cup of tea and quiet time with the papers; breakfast has to be good.
But here’s the thing; breakfast out doesn’t seem to be that much of a thing in London. In Sydney there’s a fine pattern of Bill Granger style social gatherings, that start early. Cafe’s are crammed with communal tables, warmed by the smell of great coffee and with plenty of newspapers scattered about. There are the choices of pancakes fruit and yogurt or toast and eggs- with some avocado on the side please. For me, special breakfast is all about the avocado on toast.
We’ve strained to find substitutions here. There’s Foxcroft and Ginger. There’s Allpress. But some Saturday mornings I just can’t quite face a trip on the tube. There’s only so much time one should spend underground.
Then, The Hungry One discovered breakfast at Brindisa.
I’ve raved about Brindisa before. It’s nothing new for anyone who’s been to London. It’s on the corner of the Borough markets. It’s where we walk for pink wine and cava, cured meat and tomato bread- that’s if we can get a table.
Luckily, we discover that if we arrive before the clock strikes 12, there’s plenty of room, for us and our newspapers. And better yet, on Fridays and Saturdays Brindisa serves a small special series of breakfast dishes from 9-11 am.
The choices are written up on the mirror at the back of the room.
Ham, eggs and potatoes comes in a gloriously Spanish accented plate. The ham reveals itself as wafts of jamon. The potatoes, are cheeky chips (surely this is holiday food at its best). And the eggs are lightly fried and the centres run like scared rabbits. I highly recommend wrapping a chip in a piece of ham and then plundering the yolk.
Then there’s a simple fold of omelette, on halves of toasted baguette, lightly charred and smeared with smushed ripe tomato and olive oil.
What makes this dish is the collection of nippily dressed leaves and soft herbs on the side. A little greenery with breakfast never goes astray.
There’s freshly squeezed orange juices and indulgently thick Spanish style hot chocolate. Rather than making do with a cortado for our coffee, we’ll get our caffeine fix a bit later with a take away flat white from Monmouth, just up the street.
By the time we’ve made our way through the papers and our eggs, the markets are in full swing and there are people starting to filter into the sunlight deckled room for lunch.
All that’s left for us to do is pick out some cheap fresh berries and find something special for dinner. Civility itself.
Now that’s a morning worth getting out of bed for.
18-20 Southwark St
Camberwell, London SE1 1TJ
020 7357 8880