Cafés have a lot on their plates if they want to meet the ever-rising standards of the modern-day brunch-ee. Take the other week, for example, when I witnessed a girl demand that her egg is taken back to the kitchen and re-positioned ON the toast rather than beside it, because, well, it ‘just didn’t look very Instagrammable’.
In 2019, eggs on the side could, quite frankly, be a one-star trip advisor-able offence. So it was with a lengthy check-list I rocked up to determine whether or not Seven Sisters’ answer to a cute brunch spot really did live up to the hype. Situated just a few minutes from the station, ‘Café Lemon’ has made quite a name for itself in the two years (CHECK THIS) it’s been open. First impressions? I was instantly made to feel at home by the gentleman who served me, so much so that I was practically ready to take my shoes off and put my feet up.
It became very apparent very quickly that Café Lemon hasn’t been plonked there as a café purely for commercial gain, but instead has succeeded in actually integrating itself as part of the community, and is evidently loved and valued by those living in the area. If it’s lack of pretence was impressive, that was just the tip of the iceberg. One glance at the menu showed a lucrative selection of brunch, lunch and main dishes, many of which with a Turkish twist.
Cakes decorate the counter and if you manage to resist the fluffy lemon and poppy-seed number, please send me some of your willpower. Before I tucked into the cake, however, I decided to follow the advice of every clichéd coffee board in London and ‘first, had coffee’. ‘Café Lemon’ is not messing around. If you haven’t tried Turkish coffee this is a good place to start. It is rich, creamy (even without milk!) and gives a hefty kick. One of my favourite things in any café is its willingness to ignore the status quo and serve brunch all day long. The brunch menu offers up a mixture of meat, vegetarian and vegan options, all of which can be customised to meet dietary requirements. I toyed between baked eggs with sucuk and Turkish eggs before opting for the latter. At £7.45, I was presented with a generously sized plate consisting of 2 poached eggs topped with strained yogurt, chilli butter, pomegranate seeds, parsley and sourdough bread.
Well, I can tell you one thing – pomegranates are going to become a staple ingredient in my morning egg on toast combos from now on.
It was truly delicious and not like anything I’ve tried before. As I ate, I sipped on the café’s signature drink – their homemade lemonade with mint – not to be missed!| A quick sweep of the rest of the café told me that the lunch options were just as good. Colourful salads, tortilla wraps and brioche bun burgers had me convinced that this would not be my last visit.
The setting is perfect for a casual date or a catch up with friends. I have a great belief that lighting can make or break a conversation. Fluorescent lighting = you’re probably going to be talking about who’s turn it is to take the trash out. Warm lighting, on the other hand, and who knows – you might even witness a proposal! I suspect whoever designed it might have the same ‘hygge’ Pinterest tag that I do (no shame…okay, maybe a little shame). For someone who finds themselves frequenting cafes more often than they’d like to admit, it takes a lot to distinguish one flat white from another.
But I would be surprised if Café Lemon doesn’t leave a lasting impression on anyone who visits. If you’re looking for somewhere with great food, a warm atmosphere and the friendliest staff I’ve encountered in a long time, you’re in for a treat.
118 West Green Road
London N15 5AA
By: Rachel Edwards