In its new guise as The Riding House Cafe, the sleek teal and wood interiors and all day brasserie-style menu shows it means business and is here to stay. We clattered in at 8:30am on their official day of opening for a spot of breakfast. Workmen still flitted about, screwing in various bits and bobs.
Service was somewhat sketchy and we waited a while for menus, and then were given more menus even after we'd ordered. No matter, they were sweet and it was opening day after all. My companions were alarmed when our waitress suggested the bircher muesli. "Christ, do we look like muesli people?!" We shunned her suggestion and I ordered the Eggs Hussard, with an extra order of buttermilk pancakes with berries and clotted cream for a sweet note.
I wasn't sure what Bordelaise sauce was that came as part of my dish, but after one bite I was sure. Red wine sauce. With Hollandaise. At 9am. Oooof. A toasted slice, slowly soaking up the sauce was topped with good quality ham, a slice of tomato and wilted spinach, before being topped by two poached eggs and a generous helping of the aforementioned Hollandaise. While one egg was perfectly poached with a runny yolk, the other was over done and the yolk had set. The serious sleeps were starting to set in, but I soldiered on gamely.
Buttermilk pancakes has slightly crispy edges and fluffy innards. Drizzled with maple syrup and then smeared with some excellent clotted cream, the berries balanced out the sugar with a hearty tang. With coffee and service, the final bill came to £14 per person. Again, not an every day breakfast, but for a spot of indulgence.
I have no doubt that The Riding House Cafe will have more staying power than its predecessors. Having had a brief glimpse of their lunch menu, I know I'd be torn with indecision as everything sounded tasty. I hear they do good cocktails too...
The Riding House Cafe
43 - 51 Great Titchfield Street,
Tel: 020 7927 0840