Back in the early 1990s, I used to walk through the North Laines of Brighton early every morning on my way to work. The narrow streets and many traders were only sleepily coming to life and it always had a slightly “morning after” feel. I used to park in an open-air car park that cost the huge sum of £2.50 (it’s a building now) and every day I took a different route and stopped at a different coffee shop admiring the bohemian lifestyles as I made my way to my very sensible job.
The North Laines still have that same early morning vibe, but there seems to be way more coffee shops and well, the cost of parking … But I’ve decided to use my old tactic of trying a different coffee shop every visit so that I can slowly and methodically eat and drink my way through the entire district. Which is how I found myself in the Garden Café (Brighton) in North Road.
Garden Café is hopelessly pretty and a great one for avid Instagrammers. The entrance is on a corner and dripping in flowers and plants (and yes, you can buy plants here). There is a sweet little courtyard and a deli area (also dripping in plants) where they have fresh cakes and salads. Or head to the back and their secret garden (and yes, more plants).
What’s on the menu?
All-day brunch, that’s what. We opted for pancakes with fresh fruit (£10.90) and avocado on toast with halloumi (£12). Both were nicely served and both absolutely hit the brunch spot.
Other choices included vegan or vegetarian breakfast, salad, sandwiches, quiche or soup. The service was really friendly and we were tucked away in a warm but quiet corner which was perfect.
They have coffees, soft drinks, beers, wines and a few cocktails and spirits. However, there was only one English wine on the menu (Chapel Down – Kent) and my request would definitely be to add some Sussex drinks. Other than that, great little find and we’ll definitely be back for more.
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