Monday, 11 July 2011

Brunch @ The Riding House Cafe

The Riding House café has been on my radar since it opened earlier this year, but for many reasons, some best not mentioned we’ve just never managed to go there and eat. These things happen you see. But finally we managed it. About time.
So this Sunday we turned up with reservation in hand for Sunday lunch, which actually turned out to be more of a brunch event instead, as we were still kinda heady from dinner the night before at Bistro Du Vin. We were coming to an end of a celebratory weekend for welcoming my wife back from 3 weeks in Ecuador. She was in need of some good food.
So with slight hangovers and really not wanting to eat that much we opted for their lighter options. Not their small plates I might add. I am kinda getting tired of small plates at the mo, I long for the day when small plates are so last year. So a while to go then.

We were seated in the rather opulent but not dining room, with its large red padded seats and quirky lamps made out of old plumbing parts. Very snazzy.
This lunchtime it was full of well-heeled-twenty-something-girlies having their weekly-brunch-gossipy get together. If I would had known, I’d have just turned up and gone into the main dining area and ate there. It seemed a lot more casual and less formal, but where we were provided a lot of people watching. A fave hobby of mine.
So on the Sunday lunch menu there are some breakfast/brunch items on the menu, these are on till mid afternoon. This is what we were in need of.

I’d already checked out their menu beforehand and noticed they had a smoked haddock kedgeree on the billing. I cannot remember the last time I ate this or even saw it on a menu. Wow when was that. We are talking years, and I mean years. This I had to have.
After 3 weeks of eating some of the worst food on the planet and being sick for it, the wife was more than happy to eat just about anything, but she opted for the delightfully sounding eggs Hussard.
My kedgeree was a reminder of how those Victorians knew a thing or two about breakfast dishes and how good they are to cure a mild hangover.
The flaked smoked haddock was wonderfully smoked and gave that all important taste to this Anglo-Indian dish. The rice was just as wet as it should be and well spiced and seasoned. The added pea shoots on top were a needless decoration. They seem to be this year’s garnish as 2 of the 4 dishes at Bistro du Vin the night before had then as well. One year it is chervil, the next its pea shoots. Whatever next.
The only downside to this dish was the not runny boiled egg on top. I prefer my eggs to be a slightly set but still runny. These were well cooked eggs. Not my style at all, but other than that it was damn good.

The hearty eggs Hussard with that marchand de vin sauce was delish. I actually wished I had ordered this. Although I did eat about ¼ of it after Lina was too full to go any further. I love dining with people who are just getting over an illness. This is now my fave hangover dishes. Definitely beats a full English, but in a more decadent way.
I’d never come across eggs Hussard before but I will be having it whenever possible. Basically it run like this, two poached eggs napped with hollandaise sat on top of a portobello mushroom, which was on top of an ox heart tomato. Beneath that was ham and baby spinach, which was nestled on top a doorstop slice of bread and this was mopping up all the juices from above and the marchand de vin sauce underneath. Awesome. Man I’m hooked. A greedy guts version of eggs benedict.

We really liked the Riding House Café, and already planning a return visit, as I want to try their burgers and maybe those small plates.
But for Sunday brunch, not so sure as it is sooooo far way from home, and Caravan and the Breakfast Club are just so much closer.

The Riding House Cafe on Urbanspoon


Grumbling Gourmet said...

I'm lucky to have this place just round the corner from my office so while not somewhere for a lazy Sunday brunch/ lunch (I have MeatEasy at the Rye for that!) it's somewhere I get to go to quite regularly for work breakfasts and lunches.

So sad you didn't try the true stand out on the breakfast menu, the Choritzo Hash Browns with mushroom and egg... £7.50 worth of perfection and the BEST hangover cure this side of the Bacon and Egg Hawksmoor McMuffin... (didn't review it here because it needs it's own review really)

There's definitely an article in best hangover cures... the research will be tremendous fun too!


Mzungu said...

GG - You make me so jealous. I need to get my arse down to Peckham and try the legendary MeatEasy, but having this place as your local for lunch. Man you are lucky.
One of the best hangover cures has been the Hawksmoor Full English. Awesome cure.