Wednesday, 8 July 2015


Once Upon A Time in Brunchland

Welcome to the Jungle, you know, the kind where multicoloured paper birds fly above your head, Bloody Mary's are on tap and if it weren't for all the other humans breezing around, you might even be able to hear the sound of the monkeys swinging through the paper trees. The miniature fantasy land at Stories in Broadway Market makes for an entertaining environment, I'm just holding out for dinosaurs as their next decor theme (we shall return to this).

First let's focus on the Bloody Mary's. There is a distinctive DIY vibe going on. Start with the simple tomato juice and vodka mix then go crazy. Don't apply any sensible reasoning to your creation. Your drink should be overflowing with 50 celery sticks, half a bottle of Lea and Perins, way too much tabasco and as many of the extra bowls of savoury sprinkles as you can ram into your glass. This creates an entertaining experience, before you downsize to create a drink that might resemble more of a traditionally British Bloody Mary.

The rest of the bar is well stocked with a good selection of beers, cider and other spirits, but brunch time is Bloody Mary time so you won't find me drinking anything else (apart from coffee .. all the coffee)!

The main show arrived to the table and our brunch feast could begin. I ordered the pancakes sans bananas although somehow they made their way in. It's a shame I hate bananas to the depths of my soul. Although the pancakes themselves could have done with a little more oomph, (and significantly less bananas), the generous maple syrup drenching kept me smiling.

Our other brunch dish arrived in the form of a gigantic Huevos Rancheros, a bbq pulled pork, corn tortilla and fried egg marriage. Huge both in size and taste, this was a great hit, the sort of dish that has noses turning to discover the origin of the meaty wafts and even a degree of inter-table communication! This is a champions breakfast and not for the faint hearted. Adios hangover.

But there is more to Stories than brunch. Open till late with a whole host of evening activities and entertainment, you could find yourselves heavily involved in their Monday board game evening or trying your hand at lino printing. Once that's done, Kansas Smitty's, Playground & Proof and Netil House are all within walking distance.

While the brunch didn't blow me away, the relaxed 'roll in, roll out' atmosphere is perfect for easing you into the weekend and I'd happily roll in again when I'm back in the area.

Also just around the corner is Netil Market, with Morty and Bobs' shack providing oozings of grilled cheese, Pizzas Don't Cry, ensuring that the only tears are those of pizza joy, and Bao awaiting staff so that they can reopen in their place of birth. There'll be more on all this in another page of The Little Brown Book.

One last mention must go to a great little guy who I met on my journey around London Fields. His name is Philippe and he is glorious. He is also a knitted dinosaur from Best Years (who had a stall by Netil Market) and now a committed member of Casa del Moi. He says hi.

And on that note, Little Brown Book over and out.

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Square Meal

On this occasion, we brunched as guests of Stories.