London's best breakfasts and brunches: the full list

When it comes to the weekend, cornflakes don't cut it. Here's where to find London's very best fry-ups, pastries and other breakfast treats

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Our team of experts have sought out the best breakfasts and brunches across London. Whether you're looking for coffee and pastries in a café, a posh Sunday brunch, or a mouthwateringly meaty fry-up – don't miss the most important meal of the day. Also check out London's best breakfasts and brunches in central, south, north, west and east London, cheap breakfasts in London and our slideshow of the top ten breakfast dishes. Do you agree with the choices? Use the comments box below or tweet your suggestions.

202 Café

It’s hard to imagine a prettier – or more typical – Notting Hill hangout than this elegant café in an expensive clothing boutique. It’s full of delicately aged wood with vintage touches and monochrome fashions. The café isn’t immediately obvious from the street, and at breakfast is a quiet place to have excellent coffee and juice while leafing through the generous selection of papers, served by modelesque staff. The perfect place to pick up a £300 shirt to go with your eggs and coffee.

Breakfast or brunch for two with service: around £45

  1. 202-204 Westbourne Grove, W11 2RH
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Albion Neo Bankside

Wrapped around the base of one of the Richard Rogers designed Neo Bankside ‘pavilions’ (tower blocks) just behind Tate Modern, this glass-walled café has a secluded outdoor terrace overlooking a beautifully landscaped garden. Breakfast is the main meal of the day, with dishes from toast and Marmite, to a full English. The kedgeree is mildly spiced and of perfect texture, while duck eggs on toast are fried sunny side up, runny with a single slice of toast.

Breakfast for two with service: around £35

  1. Pavilion B, Holland Street, SE1 9FU. Southwark or Blackfriars rail.
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Balthazar

Private dining room now open

One of the must-go restaurants of 2013, it’s notoriously hard to snag a table at Bathazar. Unless you go for breakfast that is, in which case you can walk in with no reservation.This glam and centrally located Covent Garden brasserie serves breakfasts from 7.30-11am on weekdays, and brunch from 10am at weekends. The breakfast menu covers the usual eggs-every-which way (boiled with soldiers, florentine, egg-white omelette), to American-style pancakes with banana and maple syrup (our pancakes were a little dry). The full English breakfast costs £15, but if you'd prefer something a little less artery-lining, porridge or granola are other options.

Breakfast for two with service: around £30

  1. 4-6 Russell Street, WC2E 7BN. Covent Garden tube.
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Breads Etcetera

Every weekend, there’s a queue of people out of the door of Breads Etc and into Clapham High Street, waiting for a table at this this bakery-cum-café. There’s an enormous basket of freshly baked sourdough loaves on a counter top in the middle of the room: white or wholemeal, rye or seeds, all wonderful. The idea is to help yourself, cutting off as many slices as you like, and toasting them at your table. This DIY option costs £6.50, and as the staff point out, the only slightly dearer all-day breakfasts work out to be better value as you then get the bread for free. The vegan and vegetarian options are particularly strong, from the fruit and nut French toast to a vegan version of pyttipanna (Swedish bubble ’n’ squeak).

Breakfast for two with drinks and service: around £23

  1. 127 Clapham High Street, SW4 7SS. Clapham Common or Clapham North tube.
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Bull & Last

The breakfast menu at this rustic-styled gastropub by Hampstead Heath is short but enticing. Brixham crab and brown shrimp, for example, make orange-toned scrambled eggs luxuriant. Even the day’s yoghurt seems opulent: thick and buttery-tasting, set in parfait jars and topped with jewel-like blueberry compote. Fancy something spicy? There’s a frying pan of shakshuka served with chorizo and aubergine. Something simpler? The bacon and egg toasted sandwich is available to eat in or take away.

Breakfast for two with service: around £20

  1. 168 Highgate Road, NW5 1QS. Kentish Town tube or Gospel Oak rail.
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Caravan King's Cross

On sunny days, children splash around in the fountains of the piazza-like Granary Square, and diners can wallow in the sunshine on the alfresco terrace. As with the Clerkenwell original, the menu here takes influence from many parts of the world. Coconut bread is topped with a dollop of lemon curd cream cheese and seasonal fruit; a rarebit is made with smoked haddock and leek, topped with poached eggs and rocket. Aubergine purée is served with poached eggs, yoghurt, sumac, parsely, toast and Greek beef sausage. At the back, metal shelves are stacked with sacks of coffee beans, waiting to go into the giant on-site roaster.

Breakfast for two with service: around £30

  1. Granary Building, 1 Granary Square, N1C 4AA. King’s Cross tube.
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Dean Street Townhouse

Even at an early hour, the dark-panelled dining rooms of this ever-popular Soho all-day restaurant buzz with the animated chatter of media types, and breakfast here makes you feel important, even if you don’t have the head of BBC3 on speed-dial. The smooth service eases things along nicely too. It’s largely classics on the menu: eggs all ways, porridge, kedgeree, full English. There are fruit smoothies for the pious, and Scots will be heartened to see tattie scones and lorne (flat) sausage.

Breakfast for two with service: around £30

  1. 69-71 Dean Street, W1D 3SE. Tottenham Court Rd tube.
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Dishoom

The Shoreditch branch of this Bombay-styled café has a splendid colonial-themed verandah and is furnished with bamboo blinds, cane furniture and quirky knick-knacks from ‘back home’. The masala breakfasts and ginger-spiced chai are a hit with locals who like to talk shop over green-chilli-flecked scrambled eggs. The bacon roll is a favourite: warm naan, spread with cream cheese and tomato-chilli jam, is sprinkled with citrussy coriander and loosely rolled around bacon rashers. Just as impressive, the omelette (no runny bits please, we’re Indian) is tastefully flecked with crunchy diced onion, tomatoes and a kick of green chilli – it could easily give the Indian Railway Catering service a run for its money.

Breakfast for two with service: around £22

  1. 7 Boundary Street, E2 7JE. Shoreditch High St Overground.
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Duck & Waffle

Breakfast is served 6-10.30am at this restaurant on the fortieth floor of the corporate Heron Tower in the City; you ascend via a super-whizzy glass elevator up the outside of the building.The menu covers English fry-ups, Belgian waffles, and the duck ’n’ waffle – crispy duck leg confit, fried duck egg and mustard maple syrup – a rich dish first thing in the morning, but excellent nonetheless. Duck egg en cocotte is served with wild mushrooms, lots of melted gruyère cheese and toast soldiers. Coffee is diner-style filter, but you’re here mainly for the brilliant views in every direction across London. If you’re after the much-hyped ‘cronuts’ (here called a ‘dosant’), they are only available in small quantities early on Sundays.

Breakfast for two with service: around £40

  1. 40th Floor, 110 Bishopsgate, (Heron Tower), EC2N 4AY. Liverpool St station.
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Electric Diner

Snuggle into a cosy leather-lined booth or people-watch from the stools in the front window, while easygoing, efficient staff ferry around dishes as varied as quinoa to a full English, with plenty of distractingly inventive options also available. Power up for a long work day with a small mountain of chilli-spiked avocado on crunchy granary toast, topped with a perfect poached egg, or a side of thick-cut peppered bacon – the stuff of porky dreams. Throw in coffee and a berry smoothie, and the day is brilliant before it’s even begun.

Breakfast for two with service: around £30

  1. 191 Portobello Road, W11 2ED
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E Pellicci

If ever proof were needed that all caffs are not equal, this Grade II-listed greasy spoon on Bethnal Green Road is it. Come here as much for the atmosphere and decor as for the (good-end-of-average) grub. It has an almost opulent feel, harking back to a time when caff culture was king. Chrome-lined Vitrolite panels line the outside, and the wood-panelled interior is filled with Formica tables and art deco touches. Food is still prepared with pride every day by Mama Maria – queen of the kitchen since 1961. The fry-ups are first rate.

Breakfast for two with service: around £20

  1. 332 Bethnal Green Road, E2 0AG. Bethnal Green tube.
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Gail's Kitchen

Upmarket bakery chain Gail’s is known for its pastries, cakes and dinky sandwiches, but its Bloomsbury branch also has a smarter, sit-down brasserie that serves brilliant breakfasts. The pastries are exemplary, which makes the Continental breakfast a star attraction – even at £15 per head. The pain au chocolat and croissant are flawless and fresh; the slices of crusty sourdough bread, served with flavoursome French butter and jam, need nothing else. A dense dollop of Greek yogurt is topped with granola and fruit compote; the orange juice is fresh, plus you have your choice of terrific coffees, all for £15. If you prefer something cooked, the menu ranges from North African egg-and-spiced -tomato-sauce dish shakshuka to a bacon sandwich with brown sauce.

Breakfast for two with service: around £35

  1. 11-13 Bayley Street, WC1B 3HD. Tottenham Court Rd tube.
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Grain Store

Although it only serves brunch at the weekends, Grain Store has many winning traits: not least a lovely location on Granary Square, plus some of the best American pancakes we’ve eaten – fluffy and vanilla-scented, with a big slab of butter on top plus maple syrup. Their brunch selection is brief, but good. Honey-and-pistachio-roasted apricots with rice-milk porridge is one option; another is seed scone with Vegemite whipped butter, herb fromage frais and smoked salmon. But the main reason to come here is the pleasant walk up King’s Boulevard to have a nose around the Regent’s Canal, and maybe a bird’s-eye view of the redevelopments from a specially built lookout tower.

Breakfast for two with service: around £25

  1. Granary Square, (1-3 Stable Street), N1C 4AB. King’s Cross tube.
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Haberdashery

Popular with pram-wielders and laptop-crackers alike, Haberdashery has a painstakingly assembled make-do-and-mend aesthetic, friendly service and knock-’em-dead breakfasts. First the hot drinks: thick and glossy hot chocolate, white or regular, or the familiar international range of coffees (espresso, latte, flat white). Then the food: English or veggie breakfast (fried egg, sausage, bacon, big mushroom, confit tomato and toast, or hash brown, halloumi and greens), french toast with maple syrup and cinnamon bananas, a breakfast bap of scrambled egg, bacon, sausage and tomato jam – well-cooked, flavour-packed and in interesting combinations.

Breakfast for two with service: around £20

  1. 22 Middle Lane, N8 8PL. Finsbury Park tube or Crouch Hill rail.
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Hawksmoor Guildhall

Businessmen are clearly the target demographic for the mainly massive and meaty breakfasts at this esteemed steakhouse (the Guildhall branch is the only one serving up a breakfast menu). You could go for porridge or granola, but that misses the point – it’s all about steak, hash browns and eggs; short-rib bubble and squeak; Manx kipper with poached eggs; or a full English that would fill an elephant. All the incidentals – filter coffee, squeezed juice – are excellent.

Breakfast for two with service: around £35

  1. 10-12 Basinghall Street, EC2V 5BQ. Bank tube.
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Hoi Polloi

This dining room is part of the new (est 2013) Ace Hotel, a branch of the growing chain of music-themed design hotels in the US. The large modernist brasserie interior is a good place for filter coffee and egg dishes as well as more unusual offerings such as ricotta pancakes, shaved fennel and smoked salmon. Free wi-fi is another draw. Brunch is served at weekends (11am-6pm), and mixes up breakfast dishes with a Sunday lunch menu.

Breakfast for two with service: around £25

  1. Ace Hotel, 100 Shoreditch High St, E1 6JQ. Old St tube or Shoreditch Overground.

Jackson & Rye

Jackson & Rye is modelled on a smart US diner, and - mostly -  successfully so.  The weekday kitchen kicks off the day with a diner-style breakfast menu  (8-11.30am) that includes creamed grits (a maize porridge originally from the Southern states) topped with flaked almonds, berries and maple syrup, and enough brunch-style egg dishes to keep a Boston cabbie’s blood pressure up; our  baked eggs with ham and spinach were slightly overcooked, a common problem when using a cast-iron cocotte dish. At weekends the menu shifts towards a more brunch-oriented menu (9am-4.30pm Sat; 10am-4.30pm Sun).

  1. 56 Wardour Street, W1D 4JG. Leicester Square tube.
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Kipferl

Open early until late, this Austrian café serves breakfast dishes all day. It can be a virtuous meal, as in the ‘Viennese’ breakfast of semmel (bread rolls) with jam, honey, and drinks hot or cold. But there is also the celebrated Bergkäse (mountain cheese) omelette… The nutty flavour of the cheese makes this a really memorable dish. The coffee selection is explained well. Add on a lovely interior and incredibly friendly service, and you’ve got a real star.

Breakfast for two with service: around £22

  1. 20 Camden Passage, N1 8ED. Angel.
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Kopapa

Kopapa’s Antipodean heritage can be detected in dishes such as soft-boiled eggs with Vegemite soldiers, but the basement kitchen’s creativity goes well beyond nursery tucker. Particularly good is the signature dish of Turkish eggs – two perfectly poached eggs, bobbing in a bowl of whipped yogurt that’s topped with hot chilli butter and served with sourdough toast. Other surprising dishes include spiced banana French toast with grilled bacon, orange blossom labneh,and tamarind raisin relish. The coffee is exemplary. The original branch, Providores and Tapa Room, in Marylebone, is very good too.

Breakfast for two with service: around £25

  1. 32-34 Monmouth Street, WC2H 9HA. Covent Garden tube.
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Koya Bar

This second branch (next door) of the ever-popular udon noodle joint Koya opens for morning meals. As well as the classic Japanese combo of grilled fish, miso soup, pickles and rice, Koya Bar is turning breakfast on its head with morning udon dishes such as hot noodles with raw egg and soy sauce (kamatama udon), and English breakfast-inspired egg, bacon and shiitake mushroom udon. There’s also rice porridge with mixed mushrooms, egg and pickles, or kedgeree-style with smoked haddock. Expect Koya’s usual high-quality, handmade wheat noodles plus hot green tea or cold barley tea.

Breakfast for two with service: around £30

  1. 50 Frith Street, W1D 4SQ. Tottenham Court Rd tube.
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Lantana

Worth getting up for: A boisterous Lantana serves up inventive and exciting brekkie options the Aussie way. Dishes such as organic ham hock, chorizo, roasted pepper and baked beans with chilli cornbread and poached eggs is about as far from a full English as you can get, but traditionalists will be reassured by the organic bacon or sausage sandwich. Those of sweet tooth will be delighted by alternatives to the standard pancakes or muffins such as toasted banana bread with sticky date caramel and praline. Coffee is expertly made. Be warned though, Lantana can get busy, and noisy.

Breakfast for two with service: around £25

  1. 13 Charlotte Place, W1T 1SN. Goodge St tube.
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Leila's Shop

The order of the day at Leila’s is quality, not quantity when it comes to breakfast. The highlight here is the fried eggs – served with sage or crisp-fried Serrano ham. They arrive in a cast-iron frying pan accompanied by a wooden spatula for you to scoop them out on to your sourdough toast. If you’re not in the mood for an oeuf, then there’s also toast with own-made preserves – raspberry and marmalade, perhaps – or muesli and yoghurt. If getting dressed properly to face the world is a struggle, pop a coat over your PJs and choose some goodies from Leila’s grocery shop next door, then retreat to your own gaff to wake up at your leisure.

Breakfast for two with service: around £18

  1. 17 Calvert Avenue, E2 7JP. Old Street tube.
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Lido Café

This Herne Hill hotspot makes the perfect place to load up on calories after a brisk morning swim, though you can eat here even if you haven’t taken a dip. Large windows flood the airy dining room with light, and there are also a few poolside pews. Expect the likes of eggs benedict with sweet, juicy Gloucester Old Spot ham and tangy hollandaise sauce; or stacks of thick buttermilk and blueberry pancakes with maple syrup. If you don’t want to undo all the good work from your morning plunge, plump for one of the lighter options such as organic porridge or granola with fruit compote and yoghurt. Locals love it.

Breakfast for two with service: around £15

  1. Brockwell Lido, (Dulwich Road), SE24 0PA. Herne Hill rail.
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Lockhart

  • Rated as: 4/5
  • Price band: 3/4

If a pile of fried chicken stacked on top of a giant waffle drenched in maple syrup sounds like the ideal breakfast to you, read on. Chef Brad McDonald hails from Mississippi via Brooklyn, and while his cooking has all the knowing contemporary class of a hip NYC bistro, it's firmly rooted in the sweetness, spice and smoke of the Deep South. The aforementioned chicken dish elicited crooning worthy of Muddy Waters, while fat strips of candied bacon with eggs and thick-cut toast was another hit. Served with unlimited filter coffee (yes!), we even found room for an own-made chocolate-stuffed doughnut recommended by the friendly staff, whose denim shirts and shapely beards would work equally well in Nashville or London. The restaurant's two floors are light and bright, done out in reclaimed wooden furniture with mismatched vintage crockery and fresh flowers – a pleasing, easy-going space for a soul food brunch of grits, brisket, buttermilk biscuits, cocktails and more. Reviewed by Ellen Hardy

  1. 22-24 Seymour Place, W1H 7NL
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Lowry & Baker

It’s small – really small – and twee-ly pretty. But Lowry & Baker is much loved by Portobello Road regulars who wants their hit of Monmouth Coffee first thing in the morning. If you want to do more than a caffeine cut and run, you can sneak into a space at one of the tables – or on one of the paper-strewn benches outside – and the hip staff will bring you own-made granola or pancakes, eggs on sourdough toast and other goodies, piled on cutesy mismatched vintage crockery. A couple of hotplates behind the cake-laden counter do the job of a kitchen, making the beautifully poached eggs on avocado-spread bread with a mound of smoked salmon an even more impressive achievement.

Breakfast for two with service: around £20. Cash only.

  1. 339 Portobello Road, W10 5SA
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Milk

If your idea of a gentle awakening in the morning is a nice cup of tea listening to Chris Evans, you’d best go elsewhere – you can hear the sound of deep house coming through the open french windows down the length of Hildreth Street. The service is laid back, but that gives you time to admire the artful dodge of a distressed interior, and to puzzle over why their logo reads ‘M1lk’. The coffee kicks – currently on offer are beans from Workshop and from Koppi in Sweden – and the menu lists some interesting hot dishes, such as Kurdish baked eggs with chorizo, spinach, labneh and Turkish dried chilli.

Breakfast for two with service: around £20

  1. 20 Bedford Hill, SW12 9RG. Balham tube.
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No 67

There are few nicer places to breakfast on a sunny day than No 67 – whether on a bench under the dappled shade of the huge Tree of Heaven out front, surrounded by the lush planting in the walled garden at the back, or in either of the two elegant rooms inside. All the usual British breakfast staples are on offer, from thick porridge with golden syrup and cream to smoked salmon and scrambled egg. Fresh fruit juices and speciality teas are available, but the excellent coffee sourced from Allpress is what most regulars choose. A relaxed clientele includes freelance local professionals with laptops and art-loving visitors to the South London Gallery.

Breakfast for two with service: around £25

  1. South London Gallery, (67 Peckham Road), SE5 8UH. Peckham Rye Overground or rail.
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Ottolenghi

The Dualit toasters plugged into each table have been a feature since this enduring hotspot opened but really, when the breakfast menu is so intriguing, why would you have toast you can make at home? Ottolenghi has put shakshuka, the North African dish of eggs, peppers and tomatoes, on London’s culinary map, and pimped baked beans beyond recognition with bacon, chorizo, fried egg and black pudding. Luxurious doorstops of eggy bread are made from brioche, dusted with cinnamon and icing sugar and accompanied by berry compote and crème fraîche. Even the day’s fruit muffin can prove to be a rich, heady experience.

Breakfast for two with service: around £25

  1. 287 Upper Street, N1 2TZ. Angel or Highbury & Islington.
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Pavilion Café

Lucky, lucky ducks. Not only do the web-footed locals of Victoria Park have a gorgeous lake (complete with nesting islands, pagoda and splendid domed café) – they also get to snack on some of the best artisanal bread of any park café in London: baked in-house by the Pavilion, for its trendy all-day crowd. Yards of outdoor tables and smoothly pulled coffees (with a rota of guest beans) make this a lovely watering hole for humans too. Calorific American and British breakfast classics (maple syrup pancakes; eggs benedict) are done straightforwardly well with flavourful ingredients, though the cooking is sometimes clumsier than it was when the Pavilion first transformed from greasy spoon to yupster hangout.

Breakfast for two with service: around £18

  1. Victoria Park, (Crown Gate West), E9 7DE. Mile End tube.
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Plum & Spilt Milk

  • Offer

This sedate dining room on the first floor of the Great Northern Hotel at King’s Cross station is a sanctuary from the bustle below. The cool calm of the room and smooth, gracious service allows you to gather your thoughts before that onward journey or business meeting. The menu might not rock the boardroom, but the simple selection of dishes are done well. Scrambled eggs have that perfect just-set texture, served with warm granary toast, smoked salmon, and a side order of full-flavoured bacon. There are lighter options too such as granola, porridge or croissants. If you’re in a hurry, the hotel’s food kiosk on the ground floor (prosaically called Kiosk) sells bacon rolls, muffins, and more besides right on the station’s concourse.

Breakfast for two with service: around £40

  1. Great Northern Hotel, King's Cross, N1C 4TB. King’s Cross tube.
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Raoul's

Modern and functional, Raoul’s rather dark interior isn’t given much light by the abstract paintings on the walls; the pavement tables with their big umbrellas are a better bet in warmer weather. The menu reads encouragingly though, as does the presence of the adjacent Raoul’s Deli. The west London chain is deservedly popular for breakfast and brunch (all served until noon) – as well as the more standard English breakfasts, French toast and Greek yoghurt combos, there’s a more stimulating set of dishes exploring the possibilities of ingredients such as chorizo (in frittata or with eggs and coriander) or kippers, plus an extensive selection of smoothies. Haddock with watercress and hollandaise on generously buttered toast is an exceptional morning pick-me-up, and their eggs benedict is recommended, too.

Breakfast for two with service: around £35

  1. 111-115 Hammersmith Grove, W6 0NQ
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Roast

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If you visit Borough Market you’ll see the fast-moving queue for Roast To Go, Roast’s ground-level takeaway, which sells pork belly sandwiches among other things. But the prime restaurant site, over Borough Market, offers a bird’s-eye view – and respite from the bustle below. The dining room is terribly smart and proudly British, with formidable quality produce. On the menu you’ll find smoked streaky bacon, black pudding from Ramsay of Carluke and other artery-liners. But if that’s too much to stomach, try the grilled Orkney kippers with lemon and butter, or a (Scottish) tattie scone with bacon, mushrooms and a fried egg. Stop by to gather your strength before hitting the market – or the markets, if you’re a City worker.

Breakfast for two with service: around £30

  1. The Floral Hall, Borough Market, Stoney Street, SE1 1TL. London Bridge tube.
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Tapa Room

When the Providores (and the Tapa Room, its laidback all-day space) first burst on to the capital’s dining scene, its eclectic fusion cooking shook up Marylebone. The style may since have become a part of our culinary repertoire, but the Tapa Room’s quality ingredients and bold flavours are no less appealing for that. A signature dish of Turkish eggs sees runny-middled poached eggs on a cloud of light, tangy whipped yoghurt, then submerged under a pool of chilli-spiked melted butter. Equally more-ish are plates of black pudding and eggs, featuring two moist, crumbly slabs of mellow blood sausage cleverly offset by the tart-and-sweet notes of a baked Bramley apple. Groovy chilled beats set a laidback tone, matched by the service.

Breakfast for two with service: around £30

  1. 109 Marylebone High Street, W1U 4RX. Bond Street tube.
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Three Crowns

There’s no tang of spilt beer or oppressively dark interior in this new gastropub near Old Street roundabout. Light, airy and very stylish, the Three Crowns is every bit a suitable place to breakfast. Wooden tables are invitingly laid with condiment sets, flowers decorate the tables and fresh bouquets garnish the immaculate bar. The breakfast menu includes well-priced British favourites such as boiled eggs with solders, alongside black pudding, potatoes and fried duck egg. Eggs burji, a North Indian scrambled egg dish, is gently spiced but with plenty of sweet onion flavour, and the ‘full Crown’ is a cleverly tweaked full English featuring grilled plum tomato, sautéed new potatoes, sourdough toast, and buttery girolles instead of the usual field mushrooms (plus eggs and bacon, of course).

Breakfast for two with service: around £20

  1. 8 East Rd, N1 6AD. Old Street tube.
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The Delaunay

As with its famous sibling The Wolseley over in Piccadilly, breakfast at The Delaunay is a truly special affair. Similarly, too, viennoiserie (patisserie) is done spectacularly well: the beautiful display of pains au chocolat and muffins by the door is a threat or a promise – depending on whether you intend to wear those skinny jeans again. Settle into the handsome grand brasserie-style dining room and choose from consistently excellent breakfast standards – eggs, kippers, waffles, pancakes, full English – or the specialist European options such as bircher muesli, pretzels, wiener kaffee (espresso with whipped cream), or the Viennese breakfast with salami, boiled eggs and figs.

Breakfast for two with service: around £30

  1. 55 Aldwych, WC2B 4BB. Covent Garden tube.
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The Modern Pantry

When ex-Providores chef Anna Hansen opened this solo venture in 2008, it was, for a time, the fusion brunch spot. On sunny days, the alfresco tables on St John’s Square are as in-demand as ever, and the East-meets-West cooking – while no longer such a surprise – remains a delight. Everyday dishes are gently tweaked (eggs Benedict with Japanese yuzu citrus hollandaise for instance), but we like the original Pantry creations, such as the signature omelette of sugar-cured prawns, with its runny middle and tangy chilli sambal (ask for extra sambal upfront, there’s never enough). Staff are ultra-relaxed.

Breakfast for two with service: around £30

  1. 47-48 St John's Square, EC1V 4JJ. Farringdon tube.
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The Riding House Café

This brasserie does a busy breakfast trade, mainly with professionals having meetings before going to work.The chirpy staff direct groups towards the comfier of the many dining areas, while solo diners – many waving laptops or BlackBerrys – are seated towards the bar. The menu covers lighter options such as Bircher-Benner muesli. The rolled oats in this cold dish are thoroughly soaked to become creamy-textured, then topped with pumpkin seeds and fresh seasonal fruit. Poached pear and strawberry with greek yogurt and granola, or buttermilk pancakes are other light options, though there’s also a full complement of fry-ups and egg dishes. The coffee – currently from Allpress roastery – is good too. A brunch menu is now served at weekends.

Breakfast for two with service: around £30

  1. 43-51 Great Titchfield Street, W1W 7PQ. Oxford Circus tube.
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The Table Café

This slick café not far from the Tate Modern serves excellent breakfasts and brunches. A chargrill dominates the open-plan kitchen, but those wanting something lighter than a cooked brekfast should look to the selection of fruit-yoghurt-muesli combos. Weekend brunches see the likes of buttermilk pancakes, sweetcorn fritters and The Table’s signature ‘stack’ featuring home-made baked beans, chorizo, poached eggs, hollandaise and red pepper pesto.

Breakfast for two with service: around £20

  1. 83 Southwark Street, SE1 0HX. Southwark tube.
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The Wolseley

To start your day with a sense of occasion, it doesn’t get much better than The Wolseley. Arguably the best of the capital’s ‘grand’ cafés, the opulent, high-ceilinged space welcomes businessmen, tourists, celebrities and a basketful of dyed-in-the-wool regulars (whom the staff refer to as PWKs: People We Know), turning out breakfasts fit for the ladies and gentlemen of days gone by. From a just-baked pastry or an omelette Arnold Bennett, to a plate of haggis with duck eggs, or one of buttery kedgeree, it’s all done to perfection. The clatter, chatter and people-watching are, of course, an added bonus.

Breakfast for two with service: around £35

  1. 160 Piccadilly, W1J 9EB. Green Park tube.
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Tom's Kitchen

Breakfasts on weekdays and weekend brunches at Tom Aikens’s original Chelsea brasserie remain deservedly popular. The menu caters to all breakfasters, even late risers. Trad favourites like eggs florentine are excellent, and the full English consists of crisped streaky bacon, glowingly orange egg yolks (courtesy of Clarence Court free-range hens), a sausage green with parsley, plus Heinz beans. Airy waffles – good even by US standards – come with a dollop of cinnamon cream, caramelised apples and maple syrup.

Breakfast for two with service: around £40

  1. 27 Cale Street, SW3 3QP
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Towpath

Nestled on the Regent’s Canal bank, Towpath is a narrow open-fronted café with outdoor tables just metres from the water’s edge. The canal-view setting’s appealing, though the constant stream of cyclists jingling their bells reminds you that you’re still in the capital. What is on the brief menu is done well – free-range fried eggs on sourdough toast that are wonderfully buttery and well seasoned, porridge with peaches, olive oil cake, or granola with cherries and raspberries topped with yoghurt.

Breakfast for two with service: around £20

  1. Regent's Canal towpath, (between Whitmore Bridge and Kingsland Road Bridge), N1 5SB. Haggerston Overground.
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Workshop Coffee Co

Workshop’s menu is a global pick ’n’ mix of ingredients. French toast of brioche is topped with poached rhubarb, orange mascarpone and hazelnuts, a well-thought-out teaming of flavours – and comes in a sizeable portion, despite being listed under the ‘smaller’ dishes. Eggs arrive on sourdough toast with tomato kasundi (mustardy chutney); bircher muesli is perked up with fresh strawberries, labneh and pumpkin seeds. The smoked fish kedgeree, topped with a perfectly cooked poached egg, has plenty of meaty smoked haddock and notes of heat and curry spice. Workshop Coffee Co are serious coffee connoisseurs, with beans roasted in-house in the large oven. A hearty brunch menu is served at weekends.

Breakfast for two with service: around £30

  1. 27 Clerkenwell Road, EC1M 5RN. Farringdon tube.
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1 comments
Sandra
Sandra

Check out even more reviews on brunches all around London on www.goforbrunchlondon.com - don't forget to send through recommendations - it would be highly appreciated!