Again, it's been a while. Sorry. I've forgotten how to do this. The First Step is a must though, I've been coming every week or so for a few months and it's a brilliant place.
I think the best thing is the enormity of the plates. Hugely, vastly generous. So the beans have got all that room to spread out and relax. You get a layer of beans that's only one bean thick, like a sort of delicious graphene.
And look at these brilliant chips. Crisp and fluffy. Existing as two states of matter at the same time. Genius.
The tapestry menus are a nice touch too.
They get very busy at lunchtimes and are masters of table maximisation. They use these reserved signs to keep tables free and ready for deployment when needed. If you're a regular you might get granted permission to sit at one of these tables. That's a special moment.
This is a great place. I'm very lucky to be a regular here. It's a friendly, tasty place. What more could you want?
"I felt compelled to send you a photograph of my all time favourite café and just to tell you a bit about it:
The New Born Restaurant was a typical greasy spoon café and was situated in Westbourne Grove London W2 just across from Hereford Road. The photograph in the above attachment is from over 30 years ago and at that time there was an eccentric but very lovely landlady who owned a number of houses in Hereford Road and she was proud of the fact that she charged the lowest rents for bedsits in Central London (£9.00 per week). Many bedsitters from Hereford Road would come here on a Saturday or Sunday morning to meet fellow bedsitters and to nurse a hangover from the previous nights revelling.
Sadly the New Born closed down in 1984 and was replaced by a Chinese Restaurant. I’m really not sure when it started up. I guess around 1970 but could have been earlier. I remember the proprietor and chef (one in the same person) who was called Cyril."
Wanted: an Angel to take over the National Milk Bar in Llanidloes, Mid Wales
In March 2010 the small and shrinking north Wales chain of National Milk Bars announced the intention to sell this beautiful old cafe. Russell featured the one in Machynlleth which has also been closed down. I’d say that the interior is late 1960’s (or certainly looks that) with fold down seats in booths and a large map of the milk bar empire on the wall. It is always full, with a very strong and loyal following, so God knows why National Milk Bar is closing it...maybe poor management...but the local customers plus summer tourists would be enough to build a great cafe.
I should add that it is in absolutely the best central location in Llanidloes, the most beautiful small town in mid Wales and probably the nicest and friendliest in Britain. So there is a chance to get in there and put in an offer and get the thing intact before the company strips it of everything that makes it fun and unique.
And he sent these pictures:
It does look rather lovely. Want to know more? Contact George: firstname.lastname@example.org
It's been a while hasn't it? So long, in fact, that I forgot to do an exterior shot. But you can get a general idea here. I was unexpectedly in Kilburn with an hour to kill and popped into Ellie's for a cuppa. But then, the smell, the atmosphere got to me and a quick bout of ordering later we had this:
Look at that. What could be better? A huge pile of crunchy chips I told myself I wouldn't finish (on a diet you know?) but which still, somehow, disappeared. One of those splendidly flat and disc-like eggs, like a short stack of CD-ROMs you might get in a corner shop, a delicious swamp of beans, encroaching like an estuary, all resting on a bed of bacon. Perfect.
A high quality condiment emplacement - doing verticals.
Very nice tea. No nonsense, just tea.
And this lovely warm purple everywhere.
It's a lovely place. Nothing fancy. Just plain, simple, straightforward. Good grub and you can sit for a while without being bothered. Very good.
This is a magnificent place. Just when I thought I'd lost my ebcb mojo we spend a couple of days in Dorset and bump into this joyous establishment. It's so fine it's featured in a lovely series of paintings. I haven't been this excited about a cafe in ages.
Let's start with the food. Well, it's perfect. Just the right portion size, fat chip-shoppy chips, a classic egg, plopped on top, and a lovely bean sea abutting the bacon and egg landmass.
Again, classic condiments, simple not fussy, just the basic, what you want.
But it's the interior that's really lovely. It's a big place. Chip shop meets cafe meets big communal meeting space. It's right next to the coach station and was obviously once packed out all the time as the people of Bridport traveled to and fro and tourists arrived - like some sort of medieval coach house.
Which means there are a few more entertainment options than the regular cafe. It's a staging point, a place where people wait, hang out, pass the time. So there are fruit machines and some space invadery machines.
And the decor, and general vibe, is just lovely. An accretion of styles from over the years, all of it fun and friendly and simple.
Rather like the signage; a great selection of periods and styles but all of it appealing, making you want to go in.
This is a great place. If you're ever in the area you must pop in.
We dashed in here at 7am on a very, very cold day. To be honest we'd been hoping to find a place with real brick walls.
But we needn't have worried. The fry-up was magnificent and the welcome was, er, welcoming. There's a sweep to those chips isn't there? A curve of direction, and intention. And as was pointed out on flickr, the egg and beans form a comet up through the galaxy of the fry-up. Nice bacon too. As my companion said, this was a good, big breakfast, but it also felt like a healthy one.
It's a shiny, bright, well-appointed place. Lots of yellow.
A telly is always a good sign.
And some other media choices.
The condiment choice is kept simple and classic. All quality stuff, no watering down with vinegar. (I guess that would be vinegaring down.) And they've thought about what you do with your tea-bag when you're tea's sufficiently stewed - they provide a little bowl. Magnificent.
Perhaps today wasn't the day for sitting outside. But one day...
The only problem is I'm not quite sure how to tell you where it is. It's off New Road, near a big junction with the A13, in or near Rainham. It's next to a company called Tile Action but I can't find an address for them either. Anyway. Keep your eye out for this big yellow sign and if you see it, follow it. You'll get lovely grub and a splendid place to bide a while.
Ah, this is a tremendous place. Aberporth is a lovely little beach town and this cafe is perched above the bay, next to a handy car park. It's the perfect place to retire to after some mucking about on the beach or in the sea.
The ebcb is bloody delicious. And arranged on the plate with some Joe Colombo flair. Look at the way the verticals of the chips intersect with the dottiness of the dots on the plate and take that same circular energy into the twin ovoid forms of beans and egg. And...actually, I can't do any more stupid designer talk. Those chips are just too delicious-looking. I'm getting hungry just looking at them now. Fat, crisp, delicious. And though that bacon looks a little pale in this picture it was actually very tasty. This is splendid grub. Really well done. I don't surf. I barely paddle. But I can imagine this sort of calorific input would be the perfect response to a long morning's wave-riding.
Simple, classic condiments. Sauces reduced to their essence. Brown...
...and red. This isn't ketchup. This is purer. This is Red. (And a rare example that retains it's plastic cappy bit.)
Piping hot tea. I think the British seaside would be completely unbearable without ready access to piping hot tea.
We didn't really go inside. Only to order. Because the prospect of a table outside was too alluring. Sitting out under a big Welsh sky is the perfect way to eat. You can't quite see down to the beach from the cafe. The beach is implied.
But if you just nip over the road you can see what awaits you. The slacker parents among us might consider this close enough for 'keeping an eye on' children.
Next door there's a magnificent beach shop.
And, just on the front, a fantastic flag flapping in the balmy Welsh breezes. A great place this cafe, you should get yourself there.
Here's a splendid Open Sauce contribution from Trevor of Urban Spectator. Apologies to him for taking forever to get it posted. And if anyone else would like to chip in, please let me know. And, in an exciting development, the ebcb meme is spreading - Dirk has done his own here. Thanks Dirk.
Just metres inside the North Circular, George’s is located in a rather loveless wasteland of north-east London but serves up some excellent grub, notably the Greek dishes and the breakfasts (esp. the huge Greek and ‘Amerikanas”). Cuttings on the wall tell the story of how many years ago George Massos entertained diners in the West End with his golden voice and how, four years ago, he travelled to Australia to give some special shows to raise cash when this very café as good as burnt down.
The ebcb was workmanlike, very tasty but possibly with no exceptional character of its own. The chips are in a slight cluster, as if very fond of each other’s company, while the beans push the chip and bacon together like some kind of matchmaker. The bacon was succulent and on my plate had a nice peninsula running through it, bringing to mind Puget Sound in The Great Gatsby*. Ideal for yachting. The egg just minded its business, as if not really part of the gang. I’m afraid I don’t know what the liquidy condiments are – I was afraid to try them.
Service is speedy, there’s always sport on the plasma screen, and there’s the (not uncommon for a London cafe) array of Scarface and Godfather memorabilia on the walls.
*Commenters have pointed out this should probably be Long Island Sound