Saturday, June 11, 2011

London, England - Breakfast at The Wolseley

One of the hottest tables in London right now is actually at breakfast. The Wolseley has recently become the place to start your day. Situated at 160 Picadilly, right next door to The Ritz hotel, The Wolseley is a beautiful space that originally served as the Wolseley Motors Limited car showroom and was designed in 1921 by William Curtis Green, who modeled it after a recently constructed bank building he had seen in Boston. Featuring venetian and florentine detailing, the interior has beautiful marble arches, columns and stairways.

When the car dealership went bankrupt in 1926, it then became a branch of Barclay's Bank, and the original architect was called in to create offices and a large banking counter, as well as designing furniture in Japanese lacquer. The Japanese influence still permeates the space today. Finally in 2003, The Wolseley was opened as a restaurant by the dynamic duo who also run Le Caprice, The Ivy and J. Sheekey (all in London).

Open for breakfast, afternoon tea, lunch and dinner, we started out with the Viennoiserie, which is a basket of pastries all made on-site that includes mini croissant, pain au chocolat, amandine, pain sucré au beurre normand, and cannelé bordelais. (If you want butter or jam with that it will be an extra ₤1.50!).

Moving on, we sampled the traditional English breakfast: a hearty plate of eggs (fried, poached, or scrambled) with bacon, sausage, baked beans, tomato, black pudding (eek!) and mushrooms. We also had the scrambled eggs with smoked salmon and toasted campagne bread, which was quite tasty. I especially loved the super fresh and pulpy pineapple juice, which was deliciously refreshing.

The traditional English breakfast

Smoked salmon, scrambled eggs and toasted campagne bread

A basket of homemade pastries

Make sure to book a reservation in advance, and heaven forbid you're the type to linger, you'll be kindly reminded on the phone that the restaurant is fully committed so you may only have your table for approximately an hour and a half. The restaurant even sent me a text message the day before my reservation and asked me to text them back with the word 'confirm' to make sure I was still coming (breakfast is serious business evidently!).

Love the black and white marble floor and the table of pastries that greet you on the way in

Large hanging chandeliers, Japanese wall panels, arches and upstairs seating
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  1. Next time I go to London I am absolutely coming here--the traditional English breakfast alone is enough to sell me! Thanks for your tips!

  2. oh yes, i love the english breakfast at the wolseley! and of course, the afternoon too as well. nice pictures. making me hungry! :)