Mike's Cafe, Notting Hill
12 Blenheim Crescent
020 7229 3757
by Cathy Latte
Breakfasts in my grubby Stockport flat were never destined for greatness. But they were made all the more cheery by visits from Karen, my unofficial housemate at the time. Of a weekend we’d unsuccessfully try to quell the reek of rising mercury and the sound of sobbing kids wafting up from the dentist’s below with our enthusiastic porcine creations.
Eight years on, having long since left Stockport, Karen and I found ourselves in Mike’s Café. Established in 1962 it’s an honest little place with an unpretentious air, a welcome change from the soulless West London nonsense on offer nearby. Daft paintings dangle haphazardly against incongruous yellow walls; snuggly little booths and inviting tables fill the waiting floor.
‘Good quality food is delivered to your table in a quick and friendly manner’ says the menu – but they needn’t have been so modest. Our ‘Breakfast Specials‘ were made with confidence and gusto. Our eggs were blessed with a yolky-dokey divinity, the bacon with textural perfection, the fresh-from-the-market tomatoes burst juicily and the newly freed beans spilled over our plates unreservedly. If there were to be a smudge on an otherwise brilliantly white tablecloth then I’d have to point my finger at the sausage. They weren’t bad, but they weren’t the hearty herby offer I’d have hoped for, though this is probably why they can pull off an otherwise marvellous Special for £5.50.
Still, we loved it. We lolled in our seats guzzling wine (yes they sell booze with breakfasts all day long) laughing about bygone Stockport days. We smiled at the waiters zipping by and they smiled back, and we didn’t mind the little wait for our bill when after 2 hours we’d had our fill because well, we didn’t really want to leave.