Yesterday I went with my friend K for brunch at Barossa, a café that styles itself as an ‘independent coffee house and Australian eatery’. On its website, Barossa claims to be recognised as ‘one of the leading coffee shops in the UK’, so expectations were high.
I can’t vouch for the coffee, as I don’t like the stuff, but my tea came in a rather lovely, if complicated, see-through tea press. You had to fix it onto the mug to dispense the tea; unfortunately I can’t claim to have managed this without leaving rather a lot of it on the table. We did have to ask twice for milk to go with our drinks, and the requested tap water didn’t arrive either, but K said the coffee was excellent.
I ordered the Veggie Brekkie: haloumi, spinach, roasted tomatoes, grilled mushroom, poached egg and a corn fritter with a slice of sourdough.
The haloumi was nicely grilled and full of flavour, the egg poached to perfection, and there was a sizeable serving of vegetables. The only disappointment was the corn fritter – one of my favourite brunch items – which I felt was a little dense and heavy, and could have done with slightly less flour and a bit more crunch on the outside. The best corn fritters I’ve had in London so far are those at Lantana, another Australian outpost, but I’m open to suggestions!
K ordered the Corn Fritters with bacon, avocado, rocket and chilli jam, which looked delicious, though I’m not sure if she felt the same was as I did about the fritters . . .
A special mention, however, must be given to this, which K bought for me on our way out:
It can only be described as a very decadent slice of Millionaire’s Shortbread, with a huge layer – as you can see – of caramel in the middle. What made it for me, however, was the base, which was not made up of traditional shortbread, but instead (I think) of oats. Whatever it was was deliciously chewy and nutty and not too rich or sugary, providing the perfect counterpart to the sweet caramel and bitter dark chocolate.
As you’d expect for Parsons Green, the clientele was largely trendy twenty-somethings or yummy mummies and their families. We were talking rather loudly and excitedly and did attract a few raised eyebrows from both the waiter and those at the nearest table. Oh well.
There aren’t many good brunch spots in this part of town, and that Barossa is always busy is certainly testament to its popularity and the decent food. However, I think I would cast my vote for coffee or tea and one of the excellent baked goods rather than brunch.
(Apologies for my not-very-good food photography. I’m working on it!)
Categories: Food & Drink