7 January 2015

Lantana; brunch, the London version of the Bermuda triangle and a few Kiwis

Brunching is one of my favourite past times. Laughing with good people over a lingering Flat White and nibbling at a luxuriously delicious concoction at a civilised time of the weekend morning. What more could you wish for indeed?


Meeting with the kiwi brunch posse for one last hurrah before spreading to the four winds that we call the Christmas season, we decided a suitably antipodean send off at Lantana in Shoreditch was called for. Only a stone's throw from my perennial favourite Ozone (though their wicked hashcake eggs Benedict plates are getting noticeably smaller over time) Lantana is found just a minutes walk from London's circumrotatory bermuda triangle - the Old Street roundabout.


It doesn't matter how many times I visit, in bright sunshine, howling rain or on dark evenings, I spend at least 15 minutes scratching my head at the myriad of exits. Convinced that the exit I take should be the correct one, I always end up at the wrong side and have to wander halfway around the above ground traffic light system. I am 100% convinced that the staircases have mystical powers of movement to bamboozle and confuse, much like Hogwarts school corridors but lacking the amusing animated portraits to entertain one along the way.

lan·ta·na [lan-tan-uh]: a hardy invasive weed that thrives in unlikely environments.

Toasted courgette bread w/ grilled halloumi, slow roast tomatoes, a poached egg and chilli jam

Having finally navigated the Labrynthine street layout, we wandered into the nicely busy Lantana, ready for a brunch feast after wrestling with the disorentating effect of 15,000 paths and exits (sorry about the superfluous hyperbole, but it's scarred me over the years, ok?). Seated swiftly with a smile, we began the serious task of choosing from the menu. It was hard. Possibly even harder than navigating the Old Street tube maze station.

There were so many scrumptious options, and the delicious plates flying to other tables didn't help either - catching our subtly craning necks, our waitress helpfully pointed out which dish was which, and heartily recommended the corn fritters and courgette bread.

Corn fritters stacked w/ streaky bacon, fresh spinach and slow roast tomatoes served w/ smashed avocado and crème fraiche 
It takes a lot of work to deter my Kiwi lot from the siren call of Eggs Benedict, especially on a Saturday morning (recovering from hearty Friday evenings) but we were glad of straying from our standbye. My towering stack of toasted courgette bread, grilled halloumi slow, roasted tomatoes and a poached egg was simply sublime. Cut through with a piquant chilli jam, my tastebuds danced with joy at the unusual combination and marriage of textures. Soft bread, sweet tomatoes, smoky halloumi, the crisp bite of salad leaves and the sexy slow yield of a perfectly poached egg (fully worthy of a Marks and Spencer advert). Across the table, perfectly crisp edge corn fritters - an antipodean classic that has to be done well to get lip-smacking approval from our band of brunch addicts - with moreish pillowed interiors balanced cracking strips streaky bacon providing the perfect pick-me-up.


We washed our feast down with piping Flat Whites (ever enforcing the Kiwi stereotype) before our waitress unveiled our naughty dessert (split between four eager forks) of toasted banana bread with mascarpone, banana custard and salted chocolate crumb. Words honestly fail me.

Toasted banana bread w/ mascarpone, banana custard and salted chocolate crumb
Worth every moment of confused navigating, Lantana was an easygoing restaurant of Australian delectations to while away a morning of wittering and gossiping. We may just have to come back.

19 comments :

  1. A love how you give such an evocative description of brunch... but what a brunch! I love the look of your food especially.
    Lots of love,
    Angie
    SilverSpoon London

    ReplyDelete
  2. OMG I have to go here that dessert looks delicious! I really need to brunch more!

    ReplyDelete
  3. I was absolutely sold on ordering the courgette bread/haloumi combo and then you just had to go and post the corn fritters/bacon combo! Now what's a person to do?! (Order two breakfasts.) x

    ReplyDelete
  4. I never thought of putting eggs or bacon or anything on courgette bread, genius! I always just scoff it with butter haha

    ReplyDelete
  5. oh my, it all sounds and looks absolutely amazing! I must try to hit Lantana for brunch on one of my trips to London this year.

    ReplyDelete
  6. This looks so good! Definitely my kind of cafe. I swear brunch is such a kiwi thing, I used to always brunch back home, now whenever I ask someone to brunch they look at me like I'm either a bit mad or crazy posh! x

    Jasmin Charlotte | UK Lifestyle Blog

    ReplyDelete
  7. Oh ma gard I need to eat now lol that looks so good!

    ReplyDelete
  8. It was epic - I reckon most could be reproduced at home with a little pre-planning!

    ReplyDelete
  9. Brunch is definitely an antipodean love - it's been amazing converting all of my UK & expat mates over to the dark side! Best meal of the day, hands down.

    ReplyDelete
  10. It was a surprise delight that's for sure!

    ReplyDelete
  11. I never get much further than butter either!!

    ReplyDelete
  12. You could share, I guess - but it would have to be someone you really love!

    ReplyDelete
  13. We'll have to get Kelly out of her afternoon tea mode :)

    ReplyDelete
  14. Only where it's deserved! (It felt sooo good to flex my foodie fingers again)

    ReplyDelete
  15. Makes me think of my Mums corn fritters. Yum

    ReplyDelete
  16. I work in Shoreditch but never knew this place existed! Definitely going to have to stop by and check it out soon

    ReplyDelete
  17. I think it used to be called Salvation Jane?

    ReplyDelete
  18. Now I'm wishing I could be in the UK simply so I could eat here. I think I would have to get the banana bread all to myself tho.

    ReplyDelete

So, what do you think? Comments are blogging mana; short, sweet, long, loquacious, deep and meaningful...