Thursday 29 July 2010

The Breakfast Club, Rufus Street, Hoxton, central London

Just off hip Hoxton Square, this branch of The Breakfast Club is a sprawling cafe housed in an old brick warehouse with large sash windows. Next to the door is a completely-bandaged mannequin astride a knackered old bike. With the stereo playing American Pie and other folksy music, The Breakfast Club feels part mid-west diner and part British living room from the seventies. The flooring is a mix of chequerboard lino and wooden floorboards, while the furniture includes venerable leather armchairs, uncomfortable wooden benches and school chairs, surrounded by ancient televisions, fading family photos, a parasol and large bar decorated with big plastic letters and seemingly random photographs, notes and newspaper clippings. Despite the cool, but probably contrived, ambiance, the trendy young blokes waiting on tables make a real effort to be friendly. There is also free WiFi and an appealing brunch menu. The Big Breakfast smoothie, served in a tall glass, apparently contains strawberries, bananas, oats, honey, yoghurt and milk. It is thick, nourishing and enjoyable, which it should be for £3.75 a glass. Attracting arty types, laptop-toting freelancers and local builders, The Breakfast Club resonates with the Hoxton vibe. 7/10