Wednesday, 9 September 2009

London Review Bookshop & Cafe

This is a really great book shop in Bury Place in WC1 near the British Museum. It's independent as well so I encourage you all to go and buy lots of books so it can stay open and stay doing what it's doing which is being a really cool, slightly high-brow bookshop with the best fiction section you will find anywhere in London. I always feel like everyone there is much smarter than I am (no comments please) and I kind of like that in a bookshop. At the same time it's not up its own arse and they encourage you to browse and read stuff in there and this is further enhanced by the cafe that's attached. I really love the cafe - it is my hidden refuge from the office (so not sure why I am revealing it on a blog - go figure) and it just works on so many levels. The food is great, with a really interesting menu - today I had rye and walnut toast with goats cheese on top and a rocket, betroot and cranberry salad on the side.
It was delicious and really hit the spot, the bread was chewy and dense and almost sweet and the goats cheese was creamy and not as cloying as it can sometimes be. The sweetness of the cranberry and betroot and the peppery rocket went really well with the cheese on toast and I could have quite happily polished off another plateful. I have also had excellent fish cakes here and some great sandwiches - they always seem to use interesting bread. My only criticism would be that the menu hasn't changed in a while - I would like to see some more variation. Someone there (possibly the cool Aussie woman who seems to be the boss) obviously has great imagination with food - so let's see some more of it. The coffee is good but can depend on who is making it - the flat white I had today was way too millky and weak, although stil drinkable and still a million times better than Starbucks crud. The best bit of having a coffee at the LRB Cafe though is the little sweet biscuit you get with it - I LOVE them:

They are the perfect coffee biscuit. One day they were selling them and I regret I didn't buy a packet - I suppose I should just ask them where they get them. So this place - the bookshop and the cafe - is one of my favourite London hangouts, in one of my favourite parts of town (Bloomsbury - near the British Museum). Long may it survive and prosper.

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