A hearty hotel breakfast should set you up for the day in both body and mind. A tasty nutritious meal in an environment that makes you feel good. This is exactly what you get at Drake’s restaurant in Brighton.
Set below stairs in this luxurious seafront boutique hotel, the restaurant is stylish yet cosy, welcoming and informal. Photographic work by a local artist line the walls and mellow music emanates from the speakers. Listening to Serge Gainsbourg, Dusty Springfield, Timmy Thomas’ classic ‘Why Can’t we live together’ and Bob and Earl’s ‘Harlem Shuffle’ is definitely how I like to start my day.
Great Menu Choice
Attentive waiting staff and a fine selection of buffet items greeted us, and a pot of English Breakfast tea was promptly served as we perused the menu. For a lighter breakfast, choose from the buffet only or select from the main menu for something more filling. One of the great treats at Drake’s restaurant is that the buffet breakfast is included in the price of the a la carte items, so you can nibble away whilst you decide what delight to have as your main breakfast choice.
The menu provides a great balance between the traditional; home-made healthy updates on classic items and vegetarian and vegan plates to kick-start your day. The buffet includes many items made in-house by the chef such as sourdough bread with pumpkin and wheatberry, lemon & lime marmalade, raspberry jam and granola with dried fruit and maple syrup. There’s also a fine collection of pastries, fruit, fresh juices and Sussex yoghurt.
Fancy a Breakfast Tipple?
Drakes has a fine selection to choose from. Prosecco, Champagne, Bucks Fizz and the Classic Bloody Mary. But if it’s the ultimate hangover cure you’re after, why not try the porridge with Drambuie? We didn’t – but we’re kind of regretting it.
Local Produce and Vegan Options
We started with a smoothie each. I went for the Kiwi, avocado, spinach, mint and apple which was, unsurprisingly, a phenomenal shade of green and a sweet and sharp righteous start. Jo had the Pineapple, kiwi and banana and, like the Green, was smooth, creamy and just the right side of sweet.
Classic Full English with a twist
From the menu, I ordered the Full English but added the vegan sausages. I chose scrambled eggs rather than poached or fried, and they were cooked and seasoned exactly as I like them. Not rubbery, not runny, just right. The locally sourced bacon, pork sausages and black pudding were very tasty and not at all dry. They were accompanied by plump, perfectly cooked fresh tomatoes and field mushrooms.
The vegan sausages – created by the chef – particularly caught our attention. Subtly spiced to perfection and made with tofu, cannellini beans, turmeric and paprika, they were more than a match for their meaty plate mates. In future, I would be more than happy with the vegetarian breakfast and, based on this, would be tempted to try the vegan gratin too, which is also on offer.
The Perfectly Poached Egg
Jo chose the local smoked haddock. Delightfully tender with not a dry flake in sight. The spinach was perfectly buttery, the poached eggs did what a poached egg should do on a breakfast of this calibre – (see photograph!) The hollandaise sauce was both creamy and zesty. The chef here really knows what he’s doing.
Tangy, Zingy, Sweet and Sour
If we were guests here rather than having the lucky responsibility of writing a food review, we would have stopped eating at this point as we were more than satisfied, but, for a comprehensive review (!), we decided to soldier on and try the sweeter options on offer. I had some toast left from my breakfast so I popped open the lemon and lime marmalade, gave my toast a greedy topping and boy, I’m glad I did.
Tangy, zingy, sweet and sour, that’s the best marmalade I’ve ever had.
We’d ordered a pot of fresh coffee and, paired with the toast and marmalade, they were made for each other. If you’re in a hurry or just aren’t very hungry, have this, it’s amazing.
A Sweet Stack
We finished this delicious breakfast off with a stack of scotch pancakes with bacon and maple syrup. If sweet and savoury aren’t your thing, then these will certainly change your mind. The layer of 6 pancakes were fluffy and light and soaked up the syrup beautifully. The contrast between the saltiness of the bacon and the sweetness of the syrup was the perfect match.
Breakfast at Drake’s has everything you want with more than a few unexpected delights.
A great selection of vegetarian and vegan dishes with as much thought gone into them as the more ‘traditional’ plates. Savoury, sweet, healthy and a little bit naughty. Drakes has it all.
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