Brasserie Blanc…breakfast

Saturday morning breakfasts matter.  Both of us have long commutes which mean that most mornings breakfast is a coffee and if we’ve been organised a banana on the 6.18 from the station.  This means that when we do have the time to go out and have a breakfast, we want a proper breakfast.

Though we’ve been in Winchester for a couple of years now, we’ve never ventured into Brasserie Blanc.  I have a thing about chains and we’re pretty loyal to another breakfast place pretty close by, but this morning we thought we’d give somewhere new ago.  After rocking up at the door of River Cottage to find it was closed for staff training we thought we would try Raymond’s place.

We were greeted promptly at the door by a friendly member of staff and given the choice of tables. Tables were nice, but a little small..  We were asked for our drinks order as we sat down (like that) and they arrived speedily with hot milk.  Hot milk. Yum. So far so good.

There was a pretty good selection of options on the menu and I liked the fact we could make exchanges and add on extras.  I ended up ordering a full English and replaced the beans with hash browns.  The other half had the eggs benedict.  Rather sweetly the server asked us whether he wanted it with ham, spinach or salmon despite those being different things on the menu.  Other half was pretty smug that he actually knew the difference between benedict, florentine and royale.

So then we waited. And waited.

While we waited we watched the food delivery come in through the front door to be piled up. Probably not a great idea to show your customer you order pre made frozen chips but hey.  We discussed how in a French bistro we’d prefer to see a the chef come from the kitchen to sniff a vegetable or two and enter into negotiations, but alas it was not to be.  Winchester is a tricky place for vehicle access, so not much I’m sure there would be much that they can do about that and at least it was a fairly quiet time of day.

And we waited.

To the point where we ordered another coffee.  I think at this point we should have been given the second one for free, but honestly I was not in the mood to ask or demand.

Eventually the food turned up.

Full English

  • Great bacon, slightly less crispy than I like, but great flavour.
  • Two good sausages
  • Mushrooms – tiny but delicious
  • Black pudding – a decent size piece – hoorah.  However needed to be crispy as this just was warm.
  • One slice of good sourdough and some decent butter
  • Hash brown – hmm.  I love a hash brown but this was over-cooked (deep fried) and clearly from the same place that the frozen chips we saw being delivered come from.
  • Tomato – cooked nicely, but lets face it – tomatoes in February are never going to be the most flavourful
  • The eggs.  I’d asked for scrambled.  I ruddy love a scrambled egg.  But these were just…poor.  You know when they look powdered.  Pale, no texture, no seasoning and watery.  I took one bite and left the rest. That suck’s.  I hate waste.  Scrambled eggs should be buttery and soft and made to order with fresh ground pepper etc.  Massive disappointment here.

The Eggs Benedict

  • Muffins – soft and fluffy
  • hollandaise – nice and sharp with good balance from then herbs and had been grilled on the top which was a nice touch.
  • eggs – perfectly runny but didn’t really taste ‘like a local farmer’s egg’ (he’s really getting full of himself now)

Altogether the bill was around £30 which I suppose is Ok. But I do think for the time waiting we could have had second coffee included especially as it was just Americano.  Servers were busy but attentive and efficient which works for me on a Saturday morning.

Would have been good to have some newspapers to have a flick through.

Sort out the eggs and hash brown and then you have a really decent breakfast!

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