The Abbey, Kentish Town
124 Kentish Town Rd
by Mabel Syrup
I am not good at making decisions, especially when hung over. So imagine my disappointment after lying in bed for a good hour, mulling over the various different culinary delights I thought I knew to be on offer at the Abbey, only to discover that my chosen dish was no longer available. They had changed their minds, and the menus - so many times in fact that they had lost track of which one should be on display. Hastily trying to cram the idea of pancakes, bacon and maple syrup into my mind’s recycling box, I found myself faced with a much-diminished choice: Eggs Benedict, Florentine or Royale (all heavily criticised by an earlier-rising Hashley Brown), a Full English or scrambled eggs on toast.
Since making the leap from ‘pub’ to ‘gastropub’ around a year ago, the Abbey has had several members of the LRB team huffing and puffing at the oft-interminable wait after ordering. This was no exception, but my choice of a Full English was the correct one: I was finally greeted by a perfect egg with a bright yellow yolk, which ran gently into the crispy folds of the bacon and the mushrooms were fresh and juicy. The problem was the sausage. It looked good. It smelled fragrant. But it tasted… indistinct, as if someone else had chewed it first and the meat had been recovered from some special spittoon. It was dutifully re-chewed and swallowed, with a good smothering of red sauce, but the inevitable taste that lingered was that the Abbey is inconsistent, thus not somewhere to take your visiting friends – but perhaps somewhere to go with the neighbours.