Thursday, 12 January 2017

There's no place like the Tivoli...

Oh dearest Tivoli - you are in truth where my love affair with second breakfast began, so perhaps it's appropriate that you should be the first proper entry on this ode to brunch in blog form…

The tall, blond one and I used to live just around the corner from the Tivoli which was both delightful and a bit of a liability really as we got into the habit of treating it a bit like a large, posh extension of our front room.

It got so bad (good) that we stopped actually ordering brunch - we'd just sort of sidle in to our usual table and the lovely staff would bring us food - eggs benedict for me and a ham and cheese omelette for him.

But we moved house a year ago and now it's not quite so "oh god I'm walking right past it would be rude not to go in" convenient, we are less frequent visitors. When we do make it, the experience is enhanced by a certain nostalgic glow as we look back fondly on the crazy kids we were all of twelve months ago.

Last Saturday, we decided that seven days of January austerity were more than enough and so we headed down for a romantic tête-à-tête over bacon and eggs. One of the nicest things about the Tivoli is that it’s a big, homey space full of wooden floors and gleaming surfaces. (Including one of those weird, behind the bar mirrors where you keep thinking “Oh god, that poor girl looks tired” before realising you’re extending slightly smug sympathy to yourself.)

Traditionally, it’s also weirdly empty on weekend mornings which helps again with the ‘home’ extension metaphor, but does tend to make you unnecessarily hostile to other customers that dare to wander in. On this particular Saturday there were already four other people eating but we decided to be magnanimous and just sort of go with it…

I was too excited about eating to take a picture until half way through my food...

Anyway, the important stuff:

Menu – Traditional. There’s a full English and the usual trio of eggs (Benedict, Florentine and Royale which incidentally would make an excellent name for a three piece girl band…) alongside bacon and sausage sandwiches. They don’t do omelettes any more which is a crying shame but there is a chorizo dish if you feel like sticking it to Brexit (who doesn’t?) with a Spanish themed offering.

Staff – Young, cool, competent. We were sad that Gail wasn’t there.

Put it in my face 
– I’m a sucker for a sauce which is basically liquid butter so I stuck to the eggs benedict and the tall, blond one had the full English which is always a bonus as I get to steal his black pudding and tomato… Bonus points for the benedict coming with ham instead of bacon. All solid, tasty breakfast fare. Cleaned plates at the end of it.

Crimes against eggs? – Nope. Eggs were perfectly runny and golden.

Atmosphere – Chilled and lazy. Even with six of us in there, you could basically have a bit of a run round if you felt like it without getting in anybody’s way.

Topical talk 
 Trump, the forthcoming apocalypse and what to cook for dinner that evening. (I like to know where my next meal is coming from.)

The tall, blond one says 
 “Home away from home. Tasty and not too poncey. Why can’t I have baked beans?”

Verdict – Have brunched before. Will brunch again.

Wow, that chick looks tired.

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