2017; A year of brunching, reviewed

Who invented the word brunch, does anyone know? Also, did they invent the action of brunching along with the word, or was someone continually having a late breakfast and thought sod it, I’m going to make this a thing that everyone does?

Whoever it was and whatever the answer is, I would like to meet them and possible hug and/or kiss them because I f’ing love brunch. So much so that last year, it became an obsession.
I would now like to share this information with you so that I can say ‘I did it for the blog’ rather than ‘I did it because I’m a habitual and borderline addicted brunch attendee’ and someone invents some sort of brunch rehab and makes me attend. (I’ll say noooo, noooo, no).

First of all, I’ll keep it local – Earsham Street Cafe.

I have posted about the cosy cafe in my hometown of Bungay before in this post, so I won’t bore you too much BUT I would like to mention polenta (not something I write everyday!).
As many of you know, I stopped eating meat and dairy recently so when visiting this cafe back in the autumn, I ordered the veggie breakfast. I knew it would be lovely as their food is always top notch, myself and Daniel visit regularly, but never in my life had I had polenta before until now. What.A.Game.Changer. It was in the form of a fried/baked ‘polenta cake’ and was heaven on the palate. Sometimes you do worry that when you order a vegetarian or vegan option of a breakfast they will literally just take the meat and eggs off and not put much thought into it but I really would recommend this one to all fellow non meat eaters. I am going to start replicating this at home occasionally; if you’re interested I will post a step-by-step recipe?

http://www.earshamstreetcafe.co.uk/

Earsham street breakfast

I’m taking you slightly further afield now to Stokes High Bridge Cafe, Lincoln.

If like me you love history and atmosphere, this is the brunch for you. The beautiful building this cafe calls home has been erect since 1540 and the bridge it sits upon is medieval and the only one in the country with buildings still on it! The cafe has survived a fire, had The King visit and the Stokes tea and coffee has won awards dating back to 1904. I’m sure you can appreciate, when I was heading to Lincoln this was the only option for that all important brunch.
The food itself wasn’t in anyway overshadowed by the legacy and it was absolutely bloody delicious. I had the vegetarian option (they didn’t have vegan so after the picture I whipped the eggs over to Dan) and the potatoes were to die for. I don’t know what they did to get them to taste the way they did but they were essentially chunks of potato cut width ways with the skin still on, fried. Insaneeeely tasty. Lincoln itself is also very much worth a visit but more on this to come in another post 🙂

https://www.stokes-coffee.co.uk/

Stokes of Lincoln breakfastStokes of Lincoln

The next and final 2 brunches were consumed in the gloriously fine city of Norwich.
I am so far off trying all of the morning treats this city has to offer that I’m sure I could go every Sunday this year and I would only just make it round all of the places people have recommended to me.

House Cafe

Do you like ciabatta? If you’ve nodded, go here. Simple as that!
They make their own and serve it warm on a separate plate with lashings of butter and it’s divine. Also, the hash browns are brilliant, the veggie sausages were tasty as hell and they gave me 3 (I was SO full after this breakfast, definitely one for the hungry people out there). I haven’t mentioned drinks yet much either but I had a really good chai latte here, the best I’ve had in Norwich definitely. This is my second favourite brunch in Norwich and I am due back soon! (I did eat the eggs on this one – it was pre being fully vegan).

http://housecafe52.co.uk/

House cafe breakfastHouse cafe chai latte

Last but by no means least (it’s my favourite!) – Olive’s.

I am really sad, so sad I almost deleted this post when I made this discovery: I didn’t take a picture of this brunch and it was the best one of the whole entire year.
Which in itself should tell you how much I enjoyed it as I am that girl who always takes pictures of her food. BUT, I figured that I could just tell you about it and then I would have to go back to pap it for you and then insert the picture at a later date. Winning!
So at some point that will happen but for now I will just tell you that you should definitely check this brunch spot out if you’re in Norwich. You will find it on Elm Hill which, if you don’t already know, is a beautiful part of the city with lots of cobbled streets around it and it’s very near the cathedral which also is breathtaking.
Again I had the vegan option and it came with some really delicious additions such as tempeh, which I had never come across before. As far as I know, it’s a slightly more unrefined version of tofu, made squishing soya beans into a mould and then set somehow. It has more taste and texture than tofu, a slight earthiness, and in the case of this breakfast was used as a substitute for bacon. I really enjoyed it and again will be trying the technique at home!
Dan had the non vegan option with, in his opinion, some really good scrambled eggs and also you get toast as well as fried bread which was a hit.
I apologise for being a bad blogger and will get you a picture ASAP!

http://www.olivesnorwich.co.uk/

And so that concludes a few of my top brunches of 2017; I haven’t included them all as this will fast become the length of War and Peace and quite frankly, ain’t nobody got time for that. Let me know if you try any of these places but even more so, if you could suggest some new places I can try out in Norfolk/Suffolk I will be sure to add them to my ever growing list!

Just Hollie xox

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