Avocado at The Balcon, Piccadilly – It’s the new Cornflakes

06 Mar 2018

I’m pretty sure that avocado was just not a thing five years ago. It certainly didn’t exist when I was a child. I don’t remember eating my toast and admiring mum and dad eating deliciously crushed avo on sourdough with a peppering of chilli flakes. When mum asked me what I wanted for breakfast, avocado was never included in the list of options, in between Poptarts and Golden Nuggets. Yet for some reason, now, if you don’t have avocado for breakfast at least three times a week, you may as well not even have breakfast at all.

If you opt for granola instead of a poached egg and avocado mountain on toast too tough to cut then boy, are you uncultured. Problem is, now that all restaurants are familiar with the new breakfast laws, you can get the same dish just about anywhere. Of course, they tend to mix it up a bit, adding a bit of truffle here, too much lemon there, slice of salmon, rashers of streaky bacon (my fave) – it’s actually quite surprising just how much avocado actually goes with. Even your local greasy spoon has chucked avocado at the bottom of their menu – sure, the new addition is written in sharpie and the two avocados they order in once a month are probably thrown in the bin, still in their wrinkly leathery coats. If everyone’s offering the same goddamn tasty menu, how are you going to mix it up?! Oh don’t worry, I’ve got a game plan.

Nowadays, I choose my breakfast hotspot, not by menu (obviously), not even by location, but by interior. By decor. On a Friday – Fat Friday – I like to visit a place where my elbows stick to the table and the ketchup tastes like vinegar and the sausages are as fat and crispy as you’d hoped they’d be. On a Wednesday, some doorstop bread, toasted with some avo, accompanied by a pretty flat white at homely place that has candles lit from 7am and a plate of brownie pieces you can help yourself to. On a Monday… well. On a Monday, I say, treat yourself!

The fancier the better. You want to feel as if you’ve just visited London for the weekend, risen early because you wanted to the make the most of your short but wonderful stay in the City. It needs to be grand, it needs to be stylish and have impeccably high ceilings. The Balcon is the ideal place.

Offering an exceptional setting and A La Carte breakfast menu, The Balcon is situated on the ground floor of the Sofitel London St James. Modelled on a classic French brasserie, there is honestly no better place to start your Monday.

Of course, the breakfast menu includes eggs, any style, ‘grains’, granola and the all- important crushed avocado, but the guys at The Balcon have actually taken it one step further. They want you to have the most luxurious Monday (or any other day for that matter) possible. So, how about Crushed Avocado with Cornish Crab, Pink Grapefruit & Sourdough? Or Akuri – deliciously spiced scrambled eggs in a homemade butter bun? Feeling particularly extravagant at 8am on the first day of the week? Well I’d recommend the Poached Lobster & Caviar Omelette, served with potato hash and flecked with 22 carat gold leaf – what else? I’m not making it up.

Do you know what makes this place all the more better? The fact that (lobster aside, lobster’s lobster) it isn’t really anymore expensive than your average avo-dorned London breakfast! The Cornish Crab dish (highly recommend) is £11. All dishes are French inspired but made with seasonal, British produce of the highest quality. So, that’s an opulent setting, exquisite service, incredible food – all for probably only a fraction more than your local London cafe.

Let’s not all rush at once, if I turn up on Monday and there isn’t a table for me I’ll be mad.


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