The London Review of Breakfasts

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

Tuesday, April 07, 2009

Blandford's, Marylebone

65 Chiltern Street
020 7486 4117

by Shreddie Kruger

A trip to Blandford’s is not an undertaking one must, erm, undertake lightly. It requires days of planning and a clear schedule. A typical breakfast will take around 349 days to arrive. It’s the Guinness of the breakfast world – good things come to those who wait.

You must be prepared for the sort of surly service that makes you wonder how they stay in business. The guy in charge tends to wear faded jeans so tight you wonder whether he sprays them on in the morning. Or whether he put them on when he was 12, realised they were irremovable and was therefore doomed to wear them for the rest of his life. The look is topped off with an equally hugging, and no less fetching, white t-shirt. My hypothesis is that tightness of clothes is directly proportional to grumpiness.

As you order you get the feeling that he’s wondering whether he can be bothered to serve you. Maybe it’s all a bit too much effort. Or he doesn’t agree with your choices. It’s the sort of aloof charm that I love.

On a quiet weekday morning we were in the company of a very mixed crowd – two chaps in hi-vis vests pored over the financial column in the Daily Sport and a charming, bohemian girl was penning the finishing touches to her debut novel. Meanwhile we were admiring the tea coloured wallpaper and a faded mural from a Swedish naval battle that typifies the offbeat-retro-nostalgia this joint exudes.

Having had our request for a refill of tea dismissed, our breakfasts arrived. My “Blandford’s Special” consisted of an expertly fried egg, 2 rashers of sublime bacon that had been basted with extra grease (bravo), some oily mushrooms, some unwanted and wooly tomatoes and a disappointing sausage. I’ve only just twigged that it was the same components as Little Chef at Popham and had exactly the same flaws. The sausage was cheap and nasty, but without the Pot Noodle factor that would have redeemed its filthiness and the tomatoes were big and fluffy like car dice. It pains me to write this because normally everything is perfect. I wimped out and chose toast over fried bread, which, redeemingly, came cut at a jaunty angle.

Whilst my breakfast was uncharacteristically mixed, Ed’s scrambled eggs, bacon and beans could be held up to the rest of the class and an example for others to copy. Textbook stuff.

We emerged with the best part of a year taken off our lives, but full of beans to take on the rest of the day. Just remember, if you’re going to go to Blandford’s, make sure you’ve told your next of kin first. Otherwise, you’ll be gone so long they will send out a search party and report you to missing persons.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

The Blandford Special (save for the sausage) is worth the wait - esp if you get chips, beans and toast.

11:12 PM, June 24, 2009  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Having eaten with "Anonymous" above numerous times in Blandfords, the "chips" addition is always a bridge too far.

As people who eat in Blanfords every week, your observations are spot-on. We are always treated as new customers (ie. white-t-shirt-man is surly), and the sausages are always disappointing, notwithstanding we know exactly what to expect.

On that front I should point out that we have considered bringing our own sausages from the Ginger Pig and asking kitchen-man to fry them, but chickened out through fear.

11:57 AM, June 25, 2009  
Anonymous Shreddie Kruger said...

Beans and toast are always good options here. Chips are fine if it's a late breakfast/lunch.

It's one of our favouirte places. I am glad you concur with the observations... I can't even begin to imagine what the tight t-shirt man would do if you took your own sausages in. Let me know if you are going to do it as I would pay good money to witness it.

1:42 PM, July 01, 2009  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Is the perfect Cafe!!!A glowing example of quality and good service!!
A great place for breakfast =)

10:11 AM, May 12, 2012  
Blogger Unknown said...

Dear Shreddie, Blandfords has now changed owners. I would love to see your updated review. Its the same decor, tight jeans, but now on better legs - a lovely Italian lady.

1:27 PM, February 05, 2013  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I totally agree about the wait, the surly service and the high cost. The food however was not worth any if the above, I had eggs and tomatoes and h eggs were overlooked and the tomato mix was massively over salted - given there are so many other good spots round the corner it's just not worth it. Honest!

11:14 AM, June 23, 2013  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

As Joy said now run by a very friendly italian lady. Excellent food, i had a great pizza and they still serve breakfast. If the pizza is anything to go by you won't be disappointed.

9:48 PM, January 14, 2015  

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