London Larder was devised in 2012 to bring you the ultimate eating and drinking guide to London. It was borne out of a need for up-to-date, quantitative and whole-heartedly recommended places to eat and drink.

Tuesday, October 16, 2012


North American

Brunch might be our favourite of all meals. Occupying the space between breakfast and lunch, it's an excuse to indulge in foods too sweet for lunch and dishes too meaty and heavy for breakfast. It brings together all the best bits of both mealtimes and is an excuse to have a lie in and then spend hours poring over the weekend papers.

One of our favourite places to head for a first class brunch is Mayfair's Automat, a quality American brasserie near Green Park. Do not be deceived by the name, it's not themed like a laundrette or anything like that, it's just a quietly refined spot in which to enjoy a leisurely late breakfast. Traditionally, American Automats were self service fast-food restaurants with coin operated vending machines. Luckily, the service here is a little more luxurious.

Naturally, as specialists in American cuisine, we had to have the buttermilk pancakes with maple syrup and blueberries. A huge stack of fluffy deliciousness, drenched in sticky sweet syrup and topped with both whole and crushed blueberries. It's difficult to express quite how happy this dish made us. We also ate scrambled eggs with smoked salmon on brown toast; a brunch classic that has been mastered and perfected at Automat. All of this is best enjoyed alongside strong fresh black coffee or a breakfast tea with warm milk, it's a delightfully decadent way to start the day.

The brunch menu also includes many of the lunch dishes too, so if you're feeling particularly hungry or carnivorous you could try the brunch burger with bacon, sausage and egg, the smoked brisket roll or even steak and chips.

Despite it's location in the centre of London's hotel district, Automat was not too full of tourists. It's the sort of place you have to know exists before you can find it and so the diners seemed to consist of Londoners in-the-know. The prices are not cheap but certainly not extortionate and the service is charming and swift. Automat might just be one of London's best hidden gems.

33 Dover Street, W1S 4NF

Average price for brunch: £10
Average price for hot drink: £3.50
Food: 5/5
Service: 5/5
Value: 4/5


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