Queens Wood Cafe, Highgate
42 Muswell Hill Road
0208 444 2604
by Stephen Fry-Up
Having spent much of the weekend on the set of forthcoming box-office smash Ciao Bella, producing the kind of viscerally physical performance for which I am justly famed, I awoke on Monday morning with an ache in every joint and the sudden remembrance that I was unemployed. ‘Twas nonetheless a fine morning: cold, and crisp, and full of muted sun. My flat-mate, “The Toaster”, and I weaved our way through battalions of wholemeal pushchairs and past the organic twattisseries of London’s Crouch End. Our destination: Queens Wood.
Or rather: the Queens Wood Café, a daintily terraced cricket-pavilion thing nestled in the North-Westerly corner of the wood just off the Muswell Hill Road. Of breakfast options there were but five: a Veggie Breakfast, a Meat Breakfast, Eggs Bennie, Oatmeal, and Organic Swiss Muesli. I chose meat and The Toaster opted for the oatmeal. Tea came in nice thick white mugs inexplicably placed onto saucers. “Mugs and saucers?” I opined, “Whatever next?” The Toaster declined to comment.
Food arrived promptly: the Toaster’s Oatmeal came with dribbly honey and soft yoghurt. It was thick and squelchy, with the perfect balance of sweet goodness and salty bite. The honey-yoghurt-oatmeal ratio (so difficult to balance in these troubled times) was also spot on. My Meat Breakfast was small but good: yolks gooed beautifully and the bacon was strong and crisp. I also allowed myself a bottle of raspberry juice: it was thick and gloopy as healthy things tend to be and it didn’t quench my thirst. But it tasted nice and sweet and provided a pleasant counterpoint to a post-prandial snout.
Two minor concluding quibbles: my toast was a bit cold, and the butter came in throw-away sachets. If one is going free-range carbon-neutral, at least do proper frickin’ butter…