Fitzrovia is a quaint, yet on-trend, café that seamlessly combines the old-world Victorian charm of the premises with a modern menu. The décor has a rustic charm, with seasonally inspired pumpkins lining the stairway and subway tile backdrop behind the main coffee counter.
With outdoor seating, a communal table, and a large dining area with scattered seating upstairs, it's surprising how quickly the space fills up for brunch on a Sunday. Popular with locals, the entrance dissolves into chaos as customers queue for a table. Unfortunately, Fitzrovia seem slightly disorganised, even though they appear to be well-staffed. Ideally, they need a host (or at least a big ol' sign) to add names to the list and take coffee orders while patrons wait; but this task has been given to an overworked barista. As such, we waited for 10 minutes before realising we weren't on the list and newcomers were placed ahead of us.
After a 20-minute wait, we were seated in the large, warm dining area upstairs. The takeaway coffee we had ordered in the queue finally arrived, and we placed an order of Sweet Potato Fritters with Poached Eggs and a side of Oak-Smoked Bacon and the Thick-Cut Ham with a Fried egg.
One of the beautiful things about Sunday brunch is that you are rarely in a rush. Adding to the time it takes others to find a table, we relaxed, chatted, read the paper and organised the week ahead while we waited 25 minutes for our food to arrive.
Sweet potato fritters with poached eggs and a side of oak-smoked bacon.
The Sweet Potato Fritters were delicious. Spiced perfectly with what I assume was cumin, they were both fluffy on the inside and crisp on the outside. The seasoning was not overpowering, and they paired perfectly with the poached eggs and incredibly tasty mushrooms. Fried Saganaki was an excellent salty counter to the sweetness of the fritters, and the extra oak-smoked bacon that I'd ordered rounded out the whole dish.
My girlfriend ordered the Thick-Cut Ham with a Fried Egg, which she casually mentioned was not as hot as she would have preferred, but was delicious all the same. We both cleaned our plates: the food here is excellent.
The meals were so large and filling that I couldn't bear to look at the cake cupboard on the way out, although the sweets looked divine - particularly the Carrot Cake, a personal favourite.
If you are looking for somewhere to go where you can relax, keep warm, and enjoy beautiful flavours, Fitzrovia is the place to spend your (very early) Sunday morning. Just don't go starving, because there will be a wait.