A group of like minded folk from work are on a pursuit for the best breakfast joints in the City that open at the crack of dawn; some will falter, some will rise and some will shine at this time of the morning. For the record I am actually talking about the places that serve breakfasts not us as individuals! Our mandate is to uncover what great cooked breakfasts the City can muster at this un-godly hour pre work. As we wait patiently during a late August morning at 6.50am for the doors to open at Darwin Brasserie located on level 36 of the Walkie Talkie building, so called for its distinctive shape – we watch on as the cleaner hovers over the stone floor with his industrial sized wheeled machine. Those of you with beady eyes will notice that he’s missed a bit! As we finally enter it’s akin to airport security – yes you have to empty your pockets and place your belongings on a tray to be scanned and walk through a metal detector. Your mind will play association tricks with you and make it feel like an early morning flight!
Who are you gonna call? Dust Busters!
My initial reaction was encouraging, the views were stunning and I would love to come here one evening to enjoy the cocktails. I’m hitting City bars with a view with intent after a very memorable session in City Social .
Grilled Finnen Kippers with parsley butter £11.50 is what I opt for.
All washed with a latte and pineapple juice – the latter was freshly squeezed and quite delicious but at £5.50 a pop it makes you apprehensive about ordering another.
Here come the kippers – initial impressions were under-whelming as I was expecting head to tail eating similarly to Roast of Borough Market and a larger portion but it tasted ok.
A fellow diner opted for the full English. £16.50. His mission is simple – ‘to conquer a full English in every City breakfast place available at 7am’. He fedback that it was ok, not the best he had and certainly not a patch on Hawksmoor Guildhall. I had a piece of the bacon too which was quite tasty but you can’t compare them to the chops in the Hawksmoor Guildhall.
The damage: Expect to pay £15-£25 per head with juices and coffee.
The good: Our front of house was excellent, friendly smiling and even this hour of the day! The service was on point too. My favourite thing was the pineapple juice and of course the view. I’ll be back for cocktails next time!
The bad: The kippers were uninspiring for the money sadly. The complimentary toast arrived cold and were akin to the processed stuff you get from your local super market – a stark contrast to the beautiful pastries and cakes that we saw on the side bar. Perhaps I will order those instead of a cooked breakfast next time.
Level 36, Sky Garden
20 Fenchurch Street