Review: Cafe Rouge summer brunch menu

Last weekend I was very kindly invited along to try out the new Cafe Rouge summer brunch menu in London Bridge. Although I'd seem Cafe Rouge numerous times during my UK travels, I hadn't actually ventured inside. I still don't really know the reason why! Having recently created their very own brunch menu, the restaurant change was very keen to show it off and with good reason too, it was delicious!

Starting with a cheeky mimosa to kick off the weekend with a bang, my friend Jay and I spent a good 20 minutes deciding what we wanted to try. As we admired the lovely little touch of a rose with our names on, we decided we ought to try a pastry each. When in a French chain it's kinda given right?! I plumped for the flaky, warm almond croissant and my friend opted for the indulgent, rich pain au chocolat. A great choice!

For my second course I decided to embrace my love of smashed avocado on sourdough toast with a twist of smoked salmon and creme fraiche. With a sprinkling of chopped chives, this wasn't combination I've had before but will be one I will be trying out at home! I loved the creamy avocado with the salty salmon. A generous portion was just the ticket for a Saturday morning. Jay went for one of her favourites, eggs Benedict. Once again a generous portion and judging by the lack of conversation from her, I think she enjoyed it a lot! The poached eggs looked cooked to perfection with such a lovely runny yolk.

Overall I was very impressed by the brunch offering. As someone who often goes out for brunch a lot in London, I've turned into somewhat a bit of a snob. I often seek out the independent places but really some chains get it so right and shouldn't be ignored. Cafe Rouge is one of those chains. The prices were great, portions were filling and the staff couldn't be faulted. Make sure you try their mocktail menu too. Thanks for such a great start to a Saturday guys!


OOTD: White dropped waist dress

White dropped waist sleeveless dress: ASOS (similar)
Black leather espadrilles: H&M (similar)
Poppy red Lily bag: Mulberry
Mint leather strap watch: Olivia Burton

Despite spending most of my week in London and travelling to and from the city for the best part of 13 years, the skyline still gets me. What a beauty eh? It reminds me that I still need to make it to the top of the Sky Garden for a cocktail or two. I found this dropped waist dress lingering at the back of my wardrobe when I was trying on some holiday clothes. It's amazing what you can find when you hunt around! It's a great length, such comfy material and pretty light which makes it a great choice to wear when wandering around a city. It's definitely made the holiday cut! Paired with my new leather espadrilles, it's a fab outfit to try and combat this weird muggy weather we seem to be having at the moment.

By the time this has gone live, I shall be in Prague hopefully drinking and eating my way around the city. I've got the Old Town, castle and Petrin hill all high on my list to visit. Check out my Instagram to see some snaps as no doubt I shall be spamming away!


Review: Coin Laundry, Exmouth Market, Clerkenwell

Last week I met up with Kim after work to put the world to rights and try out Coin Laundry in Exmouth Market. Kim had kindly invited me along as her plus one and we settled down for a feast. Located on the corner of Exmouth Market in Clerkenwell, Coin Laundry prides itself on using seasonal ingredients and changing their menu frequently to ensure they always offer something different. The restaurant has a great laid back vibe with wooden tables, abstract art and exposed brickwork. They also had a cool basement bar with pinball machines - sadly we didn't get to try this out but there's always next time!

Kim was given a strong but delicious bourbon based cocktail with tangy ginger beer which handily came with a side of jelly beans to keep the hunger pangs at bay.  I was treated to refreshing  elderflower and prosecco based tipple. Just the right drink to help celebrate being halfway through the working week!

After lots of umming and ahhing we finally settled for creamy coronation chicken in a crispy vol-au-vent and deep fried battered marrow with creme fraiche to share. Impressed by the portions, the dishes were delicious. Garnished with grated pickled egg and shredded greens, the coronation chicken had a slight kick. The battered marrow was much more tasty that I thought it would be. The huge chunks of marrow had just the right amount of batter to stop it from being too greasy. All in all, a good start to the meal so we were excited to see what the main course would bring.

As a massive fan of curry I opted for the spicy vegetarian runner bean balti with an abundance of potato chunks, shredded greens, bay leaves, and topped with a slice of lemon. It was served with a fluffy naan and sticky white rice. I loved the takeaway novelty of the serving of the naan in a paper bag. It's the little touches like this that helps restaurants to stand out. The runner beans were soft and addictive with the sauce having a great kick. I like a curry sauce that makes my lips tingle!

Kim plumped for a huge nostalgic chicken kiev and rich cauliflower cheese. It came with a cool chewing gum to cope the garlic breath and a tiny little chefs hat on the kiev as a finishing touch. We were recommended the tomato salad and spring greens so ordered these to share. For such a simple dish, the heritage tomato salad was fresh, flavoursome and came with a zesty wicked dressing.

With such a great choice of restaurants located on the tiny strip of Exmouth Market, it can be hard for any eatery to stand out. But Coin Laundry is a solid choice. The cocktails were great, the food was hearty and the service was friendly if not a little slow at time. Thanks for letting me tag along Kim!


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