The London Review of Breakfasts

"Hope is a good breakfast, but it is a bad supper." (Francis Bacon)

Monday, February 12, 2007

Corner Deli, Hackney

Corner Deli
121 - 123 Mare St
020 8986 9325

by Blake Pudding

“Ahh the present continuous, most annoying of all newly fashionable tenses,” I mused at notorious East London charlatan Samuel J. Fouracre whilst we awaited our breakfast. At the Corner Deli they do not merely use organic produce but, according to their menu, are using it the whole time. It is as if they are saying “oh look at me using organic produce, how big’s your carbon footprint, mine’s tiny.” It reminds me of those people who say that they are loving your shoes. It is more about their loving than your shoes. It smacks of self-importance.

I knew we had made a mistake when I saw that the window was crammed with dull packets trumpeting their organic origin. My full breakfast, when it finally arrived, was not impressive: a tomato warmed rather than grilled; two eggs, cooked on the bottom, not on the top, two slices of toast made from cardboard bread, one tiny piece of not very tasty bacon and one small sausage that tasted of rancid leeks and repeated on me all day. There were mushrooms too. Sam went off-piste with poached eggs and two of those loathsome sausages. Was this stuff organic? I don’t care. Was it expensive? Of course. Was it delicious? No, it was fucking awful. This place is a classic example of the cynical café, run with no sense of largesse or hospitality, hiding its dreadfulness behind an organic fig leaf. We were not loving this place.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

I don't live far from The Corner and have often peered out of the streaky windows of the 277 to consider the odd little caf, the entrance of which looks a bit like the exterior of the log flume at Gullivers Kingdom.
I've been twice. First time was fuckin great actually, properly chargrilled tasty sausages and loads of piping hot tasty bacon, alright it doesn't look that great, but the food was fine. Last time I went (a few weeks back) I was disappointed, standards have slipped. More beans had been tipped onto the plate to try to disguise the lack of other more substantial ingredients, and it just didn't taste as good. Not a patch on Mess or Premises.

On an aside. What's going on with Mare Street, generally? Have you seen AMP? It's an abomination of what was once an alright boozer. And the Dolphin? They're now charging 7 pounds to get in apparently.

12:00 PM, February 13, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

£7 to get into the Dolphin? Last time i was there they were charging £7 to get out.

The Corner did have the feel of hard-won laurels being relaxed upon. Your are right, when in Hackney, head for Mess.

1:21 PM, February 13, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Has anyone noticed that Little Georgia has reopened near Hackney City Farm? That place, along with Mess, is what we should expect from a local cafe. Not a pale imitation of Starbucks, without the service or convenience.

2:26 PM, February 14, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yes, spotted it this morning as I trundled past.
LRB must review!

1:32 PM, February 19, 2007  
Blogger London Review of Breakfasts said...

It's on the list.


1:39 PM, February 19, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Has anyone checked out Climpson & Sons, or I think it's actually called Burgel? Broadway Market, near the Cat and Mutton.

1:17 PM, March 23, 2007  
Blogger pete said...

Yeah ,
Climpsons is a great cafe, turning out some really nice food now as well as fantastic coffee. If you want some brerakfast go there, you cant get a fry up but they do these really amazing home syle beans with chorizo.

7:00 PM, June 02, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

This fine establishment has successfully delivered 3 of the 4 worst breakfast experiences of my life.

It once made me give up smoking

11:37 PM, January 27, 2009  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The cheese with Omelette

The watered down fresh orange juice

The tasteless bacon. Where do they put this stolen taste?

11:42 PM, January 27, 2009  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I must say I avoided The Corner for a long time thinking that it looked a bit too earnest in its pushing of organic fare to really produce interesting food. However one day laziness prevailed and I popped in for a veggie breakfast and was more than pleasnatly surprised. The ambience is much more than you would expect from the outside and I have returned several times and never been disappointed.
I much say I prefer it to Mess, but then I am slightly allergic to queueing for tables...

8:35 AM, July 05, 2009  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I've been to the corner few times in the past and I was really disappointed with the quality of their food and lack of friendliness with staff and I've stopped going, recently I've decided to go back and I've noticed a changed in their quality and service.I also noticed that there's new guy in the kitchen this might be why the food has got much much better Which is good value for money and also the service has improved a lot which is handy and I can now pop in on my break knowing I'm not going to get back to work late.I now recommend the corner to all my workmates.

5:02 PM, July 18, 2009  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I agree the waiter is very very slow but the quality of the food has definately changed,The blond girl is very friendly and helpful,food is much much better,they need to improve service on the counter,apart from that I will keep visiting the corner with the family on weekend and recommend it to collegues.

10:53 PM, July 18, 2009  
Anonymous Ray said...

Hi guys I used to work for the corner,their products are not what they say they are,,most of his ingredients come from Iceland
also his stockrooms and kitchen are manifested with mice and rodents....

4:26 PM, December 05, 2009  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

eek! I've just arranged to meet somewhere tomoorw because it's so close to my meeting before hand..Shall eat before i arrive!

4:42 PM, December 14, 2009  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

hy guys im a client of the corner and i was desgusted af what i saw there the food is terrible the service is miserable the there and the blondy girl is the same like the service. To be onest i dont go back there since i had a bad experience with them.Oh i forget to say the guy with the glasses make me sick when i see him he try to go aout with every girl

12:00 PM, March 22, 2010  
Anonymous JustinCredible said...

This place used to be quite nice, although recently seems to have gone downhill.

They used to serve a gluten-free museli which was really nice. However last time I went in, I was told they no longer do this and when I asked what on the menu was gluten-free I just got a blank look and was offered something with rye bread instead.

Not helpful at all. Nor the kind of service that I would expect for the prices they charge! I don't think i shall be returning.

11:53 PM, May 02, 2010  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

i belive what u say because i had the same problem and the staff wich is working there is the same are all some people who sleep all the time i cant understandhow can people go there

3:52 PM, June 24, 2010  
Anonymous Isha said...

Service slow, and I recommend that you be ready to revisit the counter to tell them that you're wanting to get service.

I don't like the fact that they don't give out a closing time, so you takes your pot luck as to whether or not they'll be open in the early evening.

The best things in the cafe are the free wifi and the fact that most of the time there are plenty of places to sit and read or work.

The teas are good, and I've had good freshly-made fruit juices in the past (don't know if they still make that).

I wouldn't recommend having a meal there.

Last time I went in I had a pretty scrumptious slice of apple pie with custard, but I asked for it to be hot, and they actually brought me cold pie and a dribble of hot custard. I took it back and said it wasn't what I asked for & asked for it to be put into the microwave. When the waitress brought it back it wasn't very hot but warm enough to be pleasant, and they'd added more custard.

6:46 PM, February 17, 2011  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Horrible service,mess all over the place,dirty sticky tables,unpleasant staff,poor quality food...and the worst cappucino I've ever had.High prices though.
P.S.:The state of the toilets simply cannot be described by words!

11:25 AM, February 25, 2011  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

the badest cafe from all london

10:20 PM, March 13, 2011  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

i just went there once and after i eat there i felt sick one week
i was just to one step to go to hospital so if someoane go there to be careful can be verry dangerus

10:23 PM, March 13, 2011  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

i think they are putting wather in the juices

10:24 PM, March 13, 2011  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

im sure u have right

10:39 PM, April 04, 2011  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

i find hair in the omlette

10:39 PM, April 04, 2011  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

the smell from inside is like a toilet

10:42 PM, April 04, 2011  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Very bad place to work and its getting worst
the owners are horrible and greedy
the worst is the guy at the kitchen
but what goes around comes around

6:07 PM, February 15, 2012  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Very bad place to work and its getting worst
the owners are horrible and greedy
the worst is the guy at the kitchen
but what goes around comes around

6:07 PM, February 15, 2012  

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