This flagship branch of the burgeoning Ottolenghi empire features fantastic baking, taste-tingling salads, and elegant fusion dishes for sharing at dinnertime.
Hit cookbooks have made this flagship branch of the burgeoning Ottolenghi empire a point of pilgrimage for foodies the world over. Those Americans brunching nearby are as likely to be tourists as local émigrés from the banking sector, and back in the US they’ll rarely have seen french toast as fat and fluffy as the version found here. Made from brioche and served with crème fraîche and a thin berry and muscat compote, it makes a heady start to the day and, regrettably, tends to prevent further indulgence in tempting muffins and pastries.
If you’re not seeking a sugar-high, alternatives include welsh rarebit, scrambled eggs with smoked salmon or a lively chorizo-spiked take on baked beans served with sourdough, fried egg and black pudding. The queue at the front contains much takeaway custom for the lavish spread of taste-tingling salads, cakes and other nibbles such as flaky cheese straws. In the evening (when bookings are taken), the cool white interior works a double shift as a smart and comparatively pricey restaurant serving elegant fusion dishes for sharing. Expect the likes of grilled quail with smoked chilli chocolate sauce, potato, pak choi and sesame – and expect to have trouble snaring a table. The three other branches are smaller, operating as deli-shops rather than restaurants.