It might be the most important meal of the day but going out for breakfast is a much overlooking dining experience. For those days that you might have time to indulge in more than a rushed slice of toast or latte en route to the office, London has some brilliant places for brekkie. And forget American-style pancakes; it’s got to be an English Breakfast all the way. Hasn’t it? Marie Teather looks at five of London’s best eateries for breakfast.
Even were breakfast is concerned, the Italians do it well. At Cecconi’s expect something timelessly glamorous about stopping for breakfast—something you might expect of a Mayfair restaurant owned by the Soho House group set between the Ralph Lauren and Jill Sander stores. Expect a La dolce vita inspired backdrop with unbeatable people-watching opportunities—whether out of the plate-glass windows or in the marble and green leather interior.
Cecconi’s is a classic Italian restaurant with friendly, attentive staff serving food and drink from first thing in the morning until the early hours, seven days a week. The food is cooked simply, using the finest quality fresh ingredients. Cecconi’s is the only restaurant in London which serves Cichetti—wonderful Italian tapas which a perfect for brunch).
5a Burlington Gardens, London W1S 3EP
020 7434 1500
1 Lombard Street Brasserie
Very much a City staple, 1 Lombard Street Brasserie is open from 7:30am and the perfect venue for a business breakfast. Set in the former banking hall of a Grade II listed building this neo classical dining space is flooded with the morning light through its impressive central dome and large windows running the length of the room. The updated Edwardian trappings provide a smartly theatrical backdrop for business breakfasts. Chose from a the full English breakfast, an extensive selection of eggs be it on toast or in omelette form, kippers and even rib eye steak.
1 Lombard Street, London EC3V 9AA
0844 858 0680
The Wolseley, with its legions of breakfast eating regulars, is an all-day brasserie par excellence, delivering the goods from 7am until midnight. Situated on what has been described as London’s most famous boulevards, Piccadilly, The Wolseley can be found inside an impressive Grade II Listed Building. A café-restaurant in the grand European tradition expect a monumental dining area—marble-topped tables, imposing black pillars, polished brass rails and huge chandeliers. Celebrities, fashion, media types and retail workers can all be found tucking into a pre-work chow down throughout the glamorous, quadruple-height former car showroom. The breakfast list is extensive with Parisian inspired pastries, eggs, omelets, bacon rolls and a whole lot more in between.
160 Piccadilly, London, W1J 9EB
020 7499 6996
Fox and Anchor
Perhaps it’s the green light to enjoy a pint of Guinness before work that makes The Fox and Anchor such a jovial place for breakfast. This beautifully restored pub has been serving traders from the nearby Smithfield meat market since 1898. Breakfasts are gargantuan, especially if you order the Full Monty—a plate with at least ten items, including sausage, bacon, kidneys, eggs, beans, black pudding, and fried bread, along with unlimited tea or coffee, toast, jam and to up your iron intake: a pint of Guinness. Of course, more delicate stomachs might settle for smoked salmon and scrambled eggs. The Fox and Anchor is noted for its fine English ales, which are all available at breakfast. A brilliant insight into London’s East End, butchers from the market, spotted with blood, still appear, as do clerks and City tycoons who’ve been making millions all night.
115 Charterhouse St, EC1M 6AA 02 7250 1300
For an elegant and more laid back breakfast head to The Modern Pantry for modern, casual dining at its best. With two elegant, light filled dining rooms overlooking St John’s Square this Grade II-listed Georgian building is the perfect backdrop for a breakfast of freshly-baked pastries, matcha green tea, and hot scones that arrive fresh out of the oven. For something more traditionally English, there are the perfectly scrambled or softly poached eggs on toast with streaky bacon and slow-roasted tomatoes. For those who really want a healthy start to the day, the selection of fruit and smoothies are a huge hit.
Modern Pantry, 47-48 St John’s Square, EC1V 4JJ
020 7553 9210