The Breakfast Club, Soho
When an American visits you in London and has a Full English Breakfast on the top of their food list of foods to try, where does one start in choosing the best 'Full English' in London? After doing some research of London's best staple breakfast, our hearty Full English Breakfast, I discovered The Breakfast Club...
Founded by two 80's kids back in 2005, The BFC has grown to become a family of breakfast lovers old and new who work, [or should I say eat!] to help local charities whilst having lots of fun. They now have 8 different cafés but I visited their original in Soho.
The first thing that drew me in to this quirky establishment was their website; It's totally, completely and utterly awesome. The entire layout is like an interactive game of Super Mario or Pokémon for Game Boy Colour. The characters move about like a game and on their map of different Breakfast Club cafes in London, there is a lonely fried egg that waddles across the bottom of the screen. I'd found this cafe whilst researching that their 'Full Monty' had been raved about by Time Out and with this unique website transporting me back to my days of Ash, Mindy and Team Rocket, I was curious to see if their food was equally as great.
We were immediately greeted by a lovely waitress who took us to our seats and explained the menu to us. We found out that the famous 'Full Monty' was only served on their brunch menu until 5pm. Fortunately, as I'm sure they're aware at the absurd nature of not serving a full english breakfast all-day in a place that calls itself The Breakfast Club, they offer another option called The Late-late breakfast from 5pm until 11pm. The Menu has lots to choose from including a selection of American-style Breakfast classics like waffles, buttermilk pancakes, nachos and kale salads, chilli bowls and halloumi wraps for lunch. Mmmm.
Here's what we ordered when we visited:
The Slow Boy Juice - Apple, Carrot, Orange and Ginger [£4.20]
Eggs Benedict with Ham [£9.00]
Late Late Breakfast - Eggs, Tomato, Mushrooms, Sausage, Bacon, Toast and Black Pudding w/ side of potatoes [9.00]
The Eggs Benedict with Ham was very delicious and not overly-filling. The Hollandaise sauce, the obvious challenge of this, was not too buttery and gave a great complement to the egg and ham. However, it could have benefited slightly, from an extra hint of lemon or tang in my opinion. The greens added a nice touch of something refreshing to counter the smokiness of the bacon and richness of the egg. At £9.00, I still felt I was paying more for the experience than the skill or brilliance of the food.
My American foodie told me that her food was very satisfying but very filling; this is probably as she got a side of potatoes. As a Brit myself, what is truly missing from this English Breakfast, even if it is 'late late', is baked beans. It wouldn't have been too difficult to heat up a can of Heinz's Baked Beans, in order to fill in the missing piece of puzzle for our nation's most iconic meal.
Alas, all was finished.
I really loved the atmosphere inside the Cafe. On a Monday evening, it was not noisy and the service was excellent. It had a very intimate feel to it as if we'd walked into someone's bedroom or a summer camp dorm room. The walls are covered in trinkets that the owners brought from their own bedrooms giving it a very personal and rather nostalgic touch. There were pictures and notes of customers and the 'Club' element really came across with the friendliness and warmth of the staff and also the groups of young students sat around a table.
I had a really pleasant time at The Breakfast Club. In terms of eating here regularly, I would like to make it a regular hang-out to relax and have a coffee.However, the impression I developed of TBC is that it's more a fun, touristy treat; one of these places you 'have' to go to when visiting London rather than somewhere that's your regular breakfast place on the weekend. I think I'll give it another try with a different purpose rather than going purely to show a visitor the Full English Brekkie.