Lately, I’ve been gobbling up avocado toast across London. Seriously. I’ve been looking for places that have that Instagram photo quality but also offer tasty breakfast in the form of avocado toast. Recently, I had a chance to try two twists on the standard avocado toast from Elan Cafe and The Attendant in Shoreditch. Both are trendy. Both use avocado. One however, clearly stands miles apart.
Elan Cafe, Mayfair
I went to the location in Mayfair to relish in all the flowery pink Instagram goodness and start my day off with tasty breakfast and free WiFi.
I arrived super early (like around 8:30 or 9) so I was immediately seated downstairs. The space however, felt so small as I walked down the stairs. Instead of being wowed by the fake pink flower walls, I felt like the space had a certain level of dinginess to it. The place was clean though; it just didn’t sparkle.
My table was small, which was fine. The vibe of the downstairs seating didn’t seem to scream “stay here and work on the WiFi,” so I decided that this would only be a breakfast rest before moving on to a working cafe. With that in mind, I ordered avocado toast with a poached egg and earl grey tea. This way, I wouldn’t have too much caffeine and could grab coffee and work in another location. Note: There is free WiFi here, you just have to ask for the password as they didn’t seem to have it advertised anywhere within the space.
Breakfast arrived on a pink plate. Sourdough bread that was lightly toasted (a bit too light for my liking), mashed avocado, pepper, a poached egg, pomegranate seeds, a lemon wedge and some chilli sauce smeared in an undesirable way on the plate. To me, I wasn’t impressed with the look but everything isn’t about looks, now is it?
I took a bite and it was….mediocre. It was toast with avocado and a poached egg. The pomegranate seeds added a bit of a different crunch but ultimately, it was not the best toast Ive had out of the three locations I’ve visited so far. The tea was nice. It was a pot of earl grey so I figure, it’d be hard to mess up. After I finished up, I called for the bill and was greeted with a shocker. My breakfast total came out to £18. That’s like $25 american for a poached egg avocado toast and earl grey tea! That was my most expensive breakfast/avocado toast yet and considering the atmosphere and service – I was shocked at that number. For that price, I could have opened my own avocado toast shop for the day and made my money back times 20.
My opinion, this place is not worth it. Aside from the ridiculous price, the toast was not very good (it was ok) and I had better variations of this in more photo worthy places. I feel this place is a pass. Unless you want to pop through for a pastry BUT I have not tried their pastries so who knows if it is worth that.
I walked away with some photos and the taste of regret in my mouth.
The Attendant, Shoreditch
The Attendant first appeared on my radar when I heard this coffee house used to be a Victorian toilet. Breakfast in the toilet? Sounds great! However, I went to the Shoreditch location which unfortunately, was not the toilet. It did have a cool hipster vibe with gray tones and a wall made up of green plants.
This place I read can be buzzing but I arrived early (as per usual). I sat at the far side of the shop, and prepared to order myself some avocado toast and work a bit on my computer after breakfast. At this place, they didn’t have avocado toast but they did have something called an avocado smash. Close enough. I ordered that with a side of maple bacon and a fresh berry juice.
Breakfast arrived. Multigrain bread lightly toasted with “smashed” avocado and bacon on top. The avocado toast had a bit of turmeric and pumpkin seeds braised with cinnamon. So hipster. My first bite was decent. The avocado was indeed smashed which meant it had a good deal of lumps in it. Not a huge fan of the lumps. I would have preferred it the avocado was more paste like in consistency if that makes any sense.
It was good though. Nothing to write home about or anything that you need to experience but the taste of the turmeric and pumpkin seeds added something extra to it. When my bill came, the total was £11. So much more reasonable considering I ordered a juice and added on bacon. This was way better than Elan Cafe’s toast but not the best I’ve had (that honor goes to TomTom Coffee House in Belgravia at the moment).
Would I recommend coming here? Yeah, if you’re in Shoreditch and want a place to grab a light bite and work – this place is pretty good. The vibe is chill, the place is clean and there is plenty of natural light, making the whole space feel more welcoming.
Finding the best avocado toast in London is a hard task but I’m trying my best. Let me know what you think if you’ve been to either one of these locations in the comments below. Have you had the best avocado toast in London?