Saturday, 13 February 2016

An afternoon outing in London: Mr Buckley's and the Long White Cloud Café

The rosti at Mr Buckley's
Recently we've been in the trap of thinking that to do something exciting we'd need to get out of London. What we were failing to remember is that there are a lot of areas of London we've never explored and stumbling into a few new places closer to home can be just as much fun.

A few weeks ago Becks had seen an advert for a vintage furniture flea market in Bethnal Green that we thought we'd visit. We took the overground to Whitechapel and our planned walking route was blocked by the Crossrail works, so we started to drift in roughly the right direction without worrying too much whether we were taking the most direct route.

When we arrived at the flea market we could see a queue of people snaking out of the door so we decided that we'd go in search of some lunch instead, heading vaguely in the direction of our second target of the day, Warren Evans to look at mattresses. 
Hipster orange juice
We were both beginning to get hungry and spotting a highly reviewed brunch place called Mr Buckley's on Google maps we headed in its direction.

Mr Buckley's was busy with a young crowd of people. I'd feared that it might be hipster hell, and despite our juice being served in mini milk bottles, the beard quota was pleasingly low. We both had the potato & rosemary rosti with poached eggs, smoked bacon, avocado & hollandaise (£8.50).

I was a bit mixed on the food. On the plus side the avocado had an awesome seasoning on it that I couldn't pick out and the hollandaise was good. On the down side the bacon was cold, the eggs  little over cooked and the rosti was definitely more of a hash brown. The portion size was also quite small. I would have been quite happy paying £12 for something larger.

Overall it was pleasant without being spectacular and was expecting a bit more given the reviews I'd read.
The counter at the Long White Cloud café in Hoxton
Leaving the café we walked down Columbia Road, skirting round the flower market which was heaving, and into Warren Evans to check out mattresses. After lying down on eight to ten different beds we came away having purchased a memory foam mattress. It wasn't what we expected to buy and might be a little premature given all of the delays with the house!

Leaving Warren Evans we had a drift round some of the shops on Columbia Road and saw two chairs in a vintage furniture shop for twice the amount we've paid for a pair of similar chairs. Quietly pleasing that we might have found the odd bargain with all the house expenditure going on.

As we were heading back to the overground Becks' Kiwi radar kicked in and she spotted the Long White Cloud Café across the road. Of course we had to visit.
Banana bread
As we were queuing up for our drinks we heard the girl behind that till tell the people in front of us that the café used to be owned by some Australians. The Aussies might claim the pavlova, but I haven't heard of them trying to re-name the red dessert after the land of the long white cloud just yet so don't think she can have got that quite right.

Regardless of the current ownership of the café the antipodean roots are still shining through with a counter full of tasty looking treats and one chef cooking hot food on a tiny hot plate. My banana bread was thickly sliced and tasted very good.

Mr Buckley's
277 Hackney Road

Bethnal Green
E2 8NA
Mr Buckleys Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Long White Cloud Café
151 Hackney Road
E2 8JL
Long White Cloud Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

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