The London Review of Breakfasts

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

Wednesday, February 06, 2008

Waterloo Brasserie, Waterloo

Waterloo Brasserie
119 Waterloo Road
SE1 8UL (Map)
020 7960 0202

by Blake Pudding

I had heard that there was a buzz about this place amongst the beautiful people of South London (don’t titter at the back – there are beautiful people in South London) so I thought where better to impress television moguls Charlotte Johnstone and Gareth Jones. The inside is decorated in aspirational late 90s northern hotel style. This involves apples in enormous vases and gloom punctuated by blinding spotlights plus a glass-walled cellar in which first growth clarets are ostentatiously displayed. The very loud mood music added to the dated feel.

The full English breakfast (£11.50) which Gareth ordered was tiny and came with dry butter beans. I don’t eat baked beans myself but you can see from previous LRB debate what most British breakfasters think of non-Heinz beans. Charlotte went for eggs Benedict (£6.50), which consisted of one egg, one rasher of bacon on toast and some separated hollandaise sauce. I went totally crazy and ordered the duck egg, ox tongue and tomato confit (6.50) with brown toast. The duck eggs were off so I got hen eggs instead. Brown bread was off too. The ox tongue was fibrous and bland and the tomato “confit” turned out to be a soggy, burnt tomato wholly lacking in flavour.

This wasn’t a terrible breakfast but everything about the Waterloo Brasserie - the stingy portions, the silly prices and the ineptness of the cooking - suggests a place designed to make money from people who don’t really care about food. This place should fail but I fear it will be a roaring success.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

I had a disappointing breakfast here, too. Eggs benedict was all wrong: streaky bacon instead of ham, white bread instead of English muffins. A charcuterie plate was a rip-off, as was a pain au chocolat at £2.70, of inferior quality to the (surprisingly good) ones that (otherwise grim) Greggs do.

7:48 PM, February 20, 2008  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I had one of the best Eggs benedict in Balans Cafe in Old Compton Street. It's not the cheapest you can find, but the portions are good, the staff really nice. Just for the record, I'm not gay but I didn't feel unwelcomed like in most places around there!

2:06 PM, February 21, 2008  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Mrs Pudding cooked Eggs Benedict for me on Sunday and it was better than Bistroteque which until then had served the best in London.

Thank you Mrs Pudding and I am trying to be less of an old cumudgeon.I don't want to end up bitter and alone like Kingsley Amis.

1:38 PM, February 27, 2008  

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