23-27 Wadeston Street, E2 9DR
0208 983 7900
AKA: The one for the silver service brunch
The deal: Nestled away in an old warehouse just off the arty Vyner Street, Bistrotheque is a cult classic in Hackney. Regulars get evangelical about it, and while the restaurant provides fine, modern British dining of an evening (a killer prix fixe menu at £17.50 before 7.30pm), its real selling point is weekend brunch. Packed out from the get go at 11am, the 'theque draws groups of friends who haven't yet made it to bed (sunglasses slowing being inched off their faces) and hipsters taking their parents out for a posh brekkie. Xavior, the talented pianist, hits the keys from midday, leaving you and your guests to play “guess that tune” as he effortlessly plays piano lounge covers of anything from Rihanna and Girls Aloud to Gary Numan and Cyndi Lauper. Can't all weekends be like this, please?
The menu: The slight eaters can get on board with some delicate but tasty yoghurt, fruit, honey and almonds (£4) or Bircher muesli (£4.50), but the real star of the show here has to be their eggs, pancakes and fry-ups. Big thick pillows of pancakes come smothered in maple syrup, blueberries, mascarpone or bacon (£7). Eggs come Florentine (£9), Benedict (£10) or Royale (£11), but we'd recommend going the whole hog (and then some) with their English Breakfast (£12.50) – juicy sausage, salty, crisp bacon, eggs your way, toms, mushrooms and some of that lovely sourdough toast to mop it all up.
Signature dish: English Breakfast
The chef: Chris Branscombe
When best to dine: From 11am til around 4pm, Sat and Sunday
Damage to pocket: Around £7-12.50 for a main brunch dish, about £25 for a meal with coffee and a breakfast cocktail (Bloody Mary aside, we love the Rosie & Gin).
File under: Brunching, Weekenders, Chomping Ground favourite, Great with mates