Can I make a recommendation? Head to that London. Just down Lower Regent Street from Picadilly sits the Sofitel St. James. Their Balcon restaurant has just launched a rather decent brunch menu. I’ve tried it. It is mighty grand.
The little hand and skipped past midday once we where settled; it seemed apt to begin with one of the Kirs, There are five options here, a base flavouring is topped up with either Louis Dorinier Brut Champagne or a Southern French Vin de Pays Viognier. For a brunch time kir it only seemed fair to go for the Champagne option. Both our choices were stunning. The Rhubarb Liqueur with Honey and Vanilla perhaps piping the Crème de Peche, Pepper and Ginger infusion in terms of taste if only because I wanted more of a ginger hit. But that’s an aging palate for you…
Other Kir options ‘from the Champagne bar’ include Goji Berry, Basil and Cardamom, Cherry, Port and peach bitters and Pear Liqueur with Bulgare tea.
Food. The Breakfast Burger was huge and incredibly tasty. A juicy sausage and black pudding patty, a couple of slices of bacon and a fried egg topped off with bacon jam plus a mini fryer of chips on the side. My indulgent compatriot went for the Duck Eggs Benedict, Bayonne Ham and Green Asparagus. This was proclaimed as one of, if not the, best Eggs Benedict she had encountered. Equally stunning.
There is a choice of ten options from the Brunch Menu main course; the Pancake Stack with Lemon, Blueberries and Maple Syrup was very tempting while the Croque Monsieur with raclette cheese and maple glazed bacon almost got a look in but in the end one plumped for the burger. It just seemed more, umm, breakfasty.
A departure for me, a pre-dessert milkshake. Not something I’d choose to be honest, but then I’ve never encountered an alcoholic milkshake comprised of Gin, St. Germain Liqueur, Strawberry Ice-Cream and Cranberry Juice before. Now didn’t that slip down a treat? Perhaps a touch ‘girly‘ it was the gin portion that caught my eye. More of a ‘manly‘ milkshake would be the Black Russian – all dark chocolate and far from overly sweet with the addition of dark rum, chocolate liqueur and chocolate ice-cream plus the milk. Both were beautifully presented.
And then, after a moment or twos rest for a gossip and to let the body rest, in comes dessert. Butterscotch Spiral Coffee Cake for me, which was light, fragrant and beautifully textured. To my left a delightful Warm Chocolate and Ginger Tart with milk ice-cream was the choice. Breaking open the crisp casing and a rich, unctuous chocolate sauce escaped…
And finally a coffee. Scarcly believable that three or so hours had slipped away while we revelled in the attentive service, wonderful décor and indulgent food. I spied a few early birds settling down for afternoon tea as we made our why to the exit. Sundays are simply not long enough. How can you indulge in a brunch AND THEN an afternoon tea?
Photo Gallery: Brunch at The Balcon Sofitel St James London
Brunch at the Balcon Sofitel St James, costs £20 per person for two courses. Champagne Kirs cost £10 and the milkshakes £8. Other options such as Frappe Coffee (£8) are also available. My visit for Brunch at the Balcon Sofitel London was paid for but all views are my own.