Timeout released its Top 100 Restaurants in London this week, and I am disappointed to reveal that I have only been to about 10 of these. This felt like a challenge (I’ve got a year presumably till they release a new list, so going to two a week is totally doable, right?) for all of five minutes, before I reconsidered, much to my bank balance’s relief. But still, I love a good list, the time I’ve wasted following links to ‘related’ articles with titles like ’10 things not to do on the Tube’ or ‘top 50 music videos hair styles’ or ‘5 easy salad lunches’ (these in particular, always disappoint) is frightening.
This is all to say that despite being a regular brunch-er… brunch-ee? I don’t have a go to brunch place and spent some time frantically googling “top brunches in London”, “best breakfasts in London’ etc, when my parents said they were coming to visit today. Due to unfortunate transport issues, their visit has been postponed and all I’ve got is a browser history full of brunch.
My most recent brunch was to Berners Tavern in the London Edition, which incidentally scored rather high on Time Out’s before mentioned top restaurant list and I am sure deservedly so, though I wouldn’t have guessed it judging by the brunch alone. It’s undoubtedly a beautiful space, with a high ornate ceiling, crystal chandeliers and paintings of all shapes and sizes adorning the entirety of its walls. It’s a great place to go to with a group, as it’s got fantastic booths and round tables which make it easy for conversation to flow. So I give it a high score for ambience and it’s all good until we get to the food, which was frankly disappointing. I ordered the avocado on toast with poached eggs, as the vegetarian options were rather limited and this is a simple dish that I’ve ordered elsewhere and rather enjoy. I had high hopes as the simple dishes are usually a standout at great restaurants, but this was barely average. It was exactly as per description, poached eggs and avocado, with no flavour whatsoever, the avocado was unseasoned and the whole dish was bland and uninspiring. I had poached eggs and avocado on corn bread at The Diner(!) a few weeks ago that was vastly superior. The ‘fresh’ pink grapefruit juice almost certainly came from a carton or at least tasted like it did and my friend’s latte was not a latte at all but coffee with a splash of milk. I am sure that the dinner the Berners is fantastic, though at that price point I am unlikely to try it soon, but I will certainly not be returning for brunch.
Can think of a few places that would go on my list, so will hopefully be sharing that soon.