17 Jan 2014


London, UK

Rochelle Canteen is a small and elusive restaurant by Melanie Arnold and Margot Henderson (the wife of Fergus Henderson of St John Restaurant). Located on Arnold Circus in East London, it is only open on weekdays during daytime. As a result, this restaurant is reserved for the unemployed, the self-employed, students or people working near Shoreditch. I finally had a morning off, so I took the opportunity to have breakfast at Rochelle Canteen. It is within the old Rochelle School, and you enter by ringing the doorbell of the ‘Boys’ entrance. You then walk across the lawned courtyard and into the converted bike shed. This is a light and airy space, with an open kitchen and simple, school-like furniture.  The menu is very short, with only three items to choose from. I had a flower tea to start with, then scrambled eggs on toast. This very simple dish was executed to perfection. The bread was grilled and full of oil. The eggs were cooked to the perfect stage where they are runny, but not undercooked, which can be gross. The portion size was ideal for me; filling without being too much, whereas my sister couldn’t finish her plate. We were the only people eating at 10 in the morning, but there was still a lively buzz from people working in the building coming in and out. Based on the quality of the breakfast, I am now considering taking time off work to be able to try their  lunch menu.

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