Streatham is slowly yet surely becoming a bastion of trendy cafés, bars and restaurants. And for those of you searching for a new spot other than your usual hangouts, like no other, look no further than Brighton Way.
The place was formerly known as “The Genevieve”, named after the 1953 film about the London to Brighton antique car rally. As motor vehicles became more popular in the 1920s-30s, Streatham High Road was known as “The Brighton Way”, a path to an escape for a weekend and fresh air by the sea. The restaurant is located on Streatham ever busy high road so for those walking fast or driving past that’s quite easy to miss. However, the interior will remind visitors of an art gallery with its bricks and wooden walls popping out, its colorful tables and chairs, all brightened by yellow warehouse lights. The entire decor also allows the food and drinks to stand out. Albeit the menu appears simple, the flavors happen to have quite a remarkable depth. For brunch, we fancied nothing than the tradional English Breakfast and juices. The simple yet efficient “A B C” standing for Apple, Beetroot and Carrot mixed juice, one can guarantee its reputation shall be deserved soon. As for the English Breakfast, sausages were tasty and they probably make one the best scrambled eggs in South London, not too watery nor too dry with the delightful creamy taste. To the ones with a sweet tooth, Brighton Way also hosts goodies including brownies, a mellow carrot cake, flapjacks, offering something for the whole family. After a busy day we decided to return there for dinner, and we started with their interesting concept of drinks : the High Tea Cocktails. Served cold, it consists of various tea infusions mixed with spirits, soft drinks and other brandy. The idea is daring, say the Bittersweet Symphony made of Campari rinsed teapot, vermouth, gin, grapefruit bitters, fresh orange juice topped with prosecco was eyebrows worthy and yet it surprisingly works. For starters we shared a whole baked Camembert infused with truffled salsa and garlic crouton; the combination is good but rather rich and filling for two-three people before the main. We also tried the Tempura crab with burnt lime and chilli jelly accompanied by an Asian salad (which they make themselves). One certainly could have had a second order, though that is more a reflection on the otherworldly taste than the portion size. For the main course, I decided to go with the aged 10oz Rib-Eye steak, with watercress salad, grilled tomato, topped with peppercorn sauce; nothing exceptional for a choice but the meat was very tender and the size quite impressive for a 10oz steak. My friend picked the classic fish stew, infused with saffron, white wine, garlic, fresh tomato and croutons. The dish was executed perfectly, and the bright colors of the ingredients peeking through the stew made it a feast for the eyes as well as the stomach. Alas with a stomach full of tea cocktails, starters and mains we skipped the desserts menu, but we will certainly be back for more. Though I suggest they need to improve the service staff especially at brunch/lunch time, the dinner service was very pleasant.
With its colorful, child friendly, varying tasty menu and affordable prices, the place won’t stay hidden for long. There’s no doubt Brighton Way, as its name indicates, will quickly become the way to go.