The Good Egg (at Cortado) – De Beauvoir Town / Haggerston, London

It is difficult to put into words how much I enjoyed brunch at The Good Egg. Let me start with the surroundings…

Cortado is a permanent coffee shop near De Beauvoir town where The Good Egg currently hosts an all-day brunch residency on weekends. Until yesterday, I had neither been to nor heard of De Beauvoir town, a district in the Borough of Hackney that is close to Kingsland Road and the Regent’s Canal. Had a friend not suggested we go for brunch (having heard it was fantastic), I may still be in the dark. It is bursting with interesting cafes, has a wonderful buzz to it and is delightful to walk through along the canal. I was so taken with the area, it inspired me to spend yesterday afternoon in Broadway Market and this morning in Columbia Road Flower Market.

We tried to reserve a table for five but were unsuccessful (unsurprisingly now knowing how good it is); but were graciously seated at an intermediary table for three whilst we waited for the rest of our party and our larger table. Our waiter was friendly and really rather amusing, banterously shaming one of my group who ordered a fruit cup. The menu was so exciting that individual ordering just seemed silly, so two of us went half-half on a breakfast burrito (fluffy eggs, crispy potatoes, black beans, mature cheddar, roasted chilli salsa and homemade guacamole in a flour tortilla with either chorizo or roasted peppers – £8) and pastrami with eggs (brisket smoked over applewood and mesquite then fried until crispy and served with two fried eggs, potato and parsnip latkes and salsa verde – £8).

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Both dishes were everything one could ever want in a dish. Generous yet not gluttonous portion sizes, wide variety of ingredients, well put together, unbelievably tasty, great combination of textures. Perfection!

Two of my group had the shakshuka (eggs baked in a smoky tomato and pepper sauce topped with preserved lemon yoghurt and za’atar sourdough with merguez sausages or grilled halloumi – £8, or £9.15 for both sausages and halloumi).

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They both raved about the shakshuka, and thought the za’atar on the sourdough was a subtle yet very effective touch.

Excellent location, refreshingly friendly staff, incredible food, great value. Hands down, my favourite brunch of 2014.

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