The London Review of Breakfasts

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

Friday, March 30, 2007

Elliot's Cafe, Bethnal Green


Elliot's Cafe
146 Bethnal Green Road
Bethnal Green
020 7613 1691

by Moose Lee

Elliot’s Cafe looks like it has been decorated – simultaneously – by a pirate, a GCSE art teacher and a parole officer. They play Radio 1 from an Eighties ghetto blaster despite the fact that pioneering record label Acid Jazz has its headquarters in the basement. Plus, the front door doesn’t close properly.

The breakfast menu is similarly mixed up. There’s no Gut Buster, no Trucker’s Ruin, no Stuff-Me-‘Til-My-Eyes-Close Full English. There are three fry-up options: one features bacon but no sausage, the other has sausage but no bacon and the other is – whisper it – vegetarian.

As a man of great, almost supernatural insight, I was quick to pick out the best attributes of each and mould an entirely new vision: a vegetarian breakfast, with extra bacon and extra sausage. I know, I know: what could the vegetarian breakfast bring to the party? The answer is simple. It’s the missing link that no-one knew was missing: crushed avocado. Both a palette cleanser and a fatty, creamy, almost-condiment that goes with everything.

And while we’re breaking taboos, some of the fry-up old guard still claim that only Mr. Heinz should have the right to bake beans. First off, I would like to point out that Heinz does not actually rhyme with beans. Secondly, Elliot’s home-made alternative tasted wonderful. The tomato sauce even glowed – a la Senor Heinz – in the style of sodium light pollution. Add to this chopped field mushrooms that squeaked satisfyingly against my teeth, condiments in glass bottles and plentiful rashers of dark, thick bacon, all was well on the Bethnal Green Road.

The only major let down was the sausage (singular!) – it had been cut down the middle and had lost its precious juices. A small price to pay for other revelations: expect local manual labourers to be sporting creamy smooth skin. Praise be – avocadoes for all!


Anonymous Anonymous said...

After reading this review, I felt moved to write a poem:

Moose Lee
Who he?
Me like
Moose Lee

5:36 PM, March 30, 2007  
Blogger Hoey D said...

After reading Blake's poem, I was moved to write a review:

Great poem. Thanks Blake.


12:06 PM, April 03, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

After reading Moose's review, and Blake's poem about Moose's review, and Moose's review of Blake's poem, I was moved to tears.

4:44 PM, April 03, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...



7:11 AM, April 05, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

It's a scandal threatening the dignity of this entire enterprise that cries of outrage have not been raised at the very concept of 'home-made beans'. Does no-one remember the Domino effect? It's not only Elliot's, home-made beans have also been spotted spoiling the breakfast in Jones' Diary on Columbia Road. Today Bethnal Green, tomorrow...

Broke First

2:52 PM, May 09, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

It would appear that after posting the ever dubious note " dear customers we will be closed for re-furbishment…" on the front door, Elliots is no more.

9:27 PM, August 25, 2007  
Blogger Hoey D said...

Clearly, the home-made baked beans backlash was too much for Elliot's.

I am sad to see Elliot's go. Best breakfast in walking distance of my flat.


10:34 PM, October 14, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Its just moved! I stumbled across it in the Pavilion in Victoria Park - now you can have your pancakes looking at the trees and sky. They seem to have adopted a less-food-for-more-money policy tho. Shame.

11:44 AM, October 29, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

What are you talking about? The Pavilion has great food and have managed to maintain real value for money. I've been a fan from Elliot days. Granted, the interior isn't as unique anymore, but I think the food has actually improved. My friends and I are regulars of the Pavilion.

4:55 PM, November 09, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Nah. It serves smaller portions, steeper prices, more middle class babies in boden babygro and yummy mummies. Much less relaxed and happy brick lane vibe. They've taken the damn pancakes off the menu too. I think its that new dude with the brown hair. He's a mercenary and he doesn't have enough heart. Still the coffee is the best in the East End I think.

3:35 PM, May 17, 2008  
Blogger Ben said...

It maybe a bit of a sweeping statement (but true) to say that the clientele was a bit wanky, but I can safely say this is one of the best breakfasts I have ever had!
I had the vegetarian full English with sausage:

and pancakes which are back on the menu now by the looks of things:

I'd say the pictures speak for themselves!
I spent £9 on the full english,
Shared the pancake which was around £5 and had £1.50 tea (I think).

Anyway - treat yourselves to an expensive but amazing breakfast - at least once!

1:25 AM, February 01, 2009  

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