Homa, Stoke Newington
71-73 Stoke Newington Church Street
020 7254 2072
by Mariah Dairy
I went whilst still recovering from the trauma of a fry-up a few blocks down at a place called Lydia's. Lydia, or someone who had been trained in her cruel ways, served me the worst breakfast I have ever paid for, leaving me entirely paranoid about this cupcake-heavy stretch of eating establishments. But despite (somehow it's never "because of") conforming wholly to the liberal North London cliché of sourdough, bugaboo pushchairs and locally smoked salmon, Homa turned out to be a tremendous place to eat breakfast.
There's comfortingly spacious minimal décor, all big elegant bay windows and a nice front garden. My Italian sausages were wonderfully fennel-y, nestling against perfectly grilled tomatoes and some sweet little button mushrooms fried in herby butter. The sourdough passed the squishing your tomato-on-top-test with flying colours, holding firm against the omnipresent threat of decomposition. And to top it off, my god, two of the best fried eggs imaginable: the Ritz compared to Lydia's Travelodge.
My companion was very pleased with an Italianised Eggs Benedict - sourdough topped with poached egg, speck ham, provolone cheese and hollandaise. And we were both pleased by the coffee, which had that proper, caramel coloured layer of crema rather than the silty, burnt offerings of too many cafes in the area.
Homa is a good place. It's worth coughing up the extra £3-4 for the Italian sausages alone. Never again will I be tempted to risk the terrifying fingers of brown meat so beloved of Stoke Newington's less reputable haunts. I sipped fresh orange juice: it made me feel as if I too could obtain the rosy glow of our fellow diners, gleefully bouncing angelic chubby cheeked children on their knees.