The Best Brunches In Bethnal Green, London

Bethnal Green Underground Station with the Stairway to Heaven Memorial to 173 victims of the 1943 Bethnal Green Tube disaster
Bethnal Green Underground Station with the Stairway to Heaven Memorial to 173 victims of the 1943 Bethnal Green Tube disaster | © Robert Evans / Alamy Stock Photo
Jack Andrew Lenton

London is hot on the heels of New York City’s eclectic brunch scene, and where better to experience some of that irresistible English charm than the beating heart of the East End. Bethnal Green has a brunch for everyone, including vegans, daytime drinkers, ostentatious bank breakers and even those in dire need of a haircut. Here are our favourites right now.

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E Pellicci

An East End institution, the Pellicci family has been serving London natives hearty and comforting breakfasts for over 100 years. As you sip your milky coffee, you’ll find yourself sitting back and soaking in the atmosphere of the art deco interior (it’s recently received Grade II-listed status) and the theatrics of orders, compliments and jokes being shouted back and forth. When a tourist stops you on the street and asks, ‘where can I try a classic English Breakfast?’ You’ll be able to answer with a wry grin.

Pavillion Café

Situated in the relative serenity of Victoria Park, brunch at Pavilion Café is a short escape from the bustle of the city. Seating overlooks the pond and is spacious enough to keep the noise to a low hum. The menu is your standard brunch fare with plates handsomely stacked with food. Ordering at the counter, food arrives promptly and steaming in the morning air. From the Rookery Farm eggs to the Ginger Pig’s sausages and bacon, everything tastes delightfully fresh and a special mention should be given to their homemade sourdough for its crispy bite and bouncy crumb.


In the past few years there has been a host of café and restaurant owners combining their food with their other passions. Bikes (Look Mom No Hands!), books and buck’s fizz (Society Club). The latest addition is a stylish coiffure combined with great Korean street food at Hurwundeki. Nestled under the arches of the Cambridge Heath line, it’s fast and well-priced with an attentive service (for both stomach and head). The two are kept completely apart so don’t worry. Hurwundeki’s side plates are great for sharing and their steaming bibimbap has us going back time and time again.


Hidden away on the top floor of a converted warehouse, the décor is clean and considered with bright whites mixed with wood. Bistrotheque’s menu is a blend of old familiars with an array of classic brunch eggs and a few more plucky choices like crab rarebit. Portion sizes are on the smaller side but remain satisfying, and their Bloody Marys should be crowned the queens of that delicious, complicated cocktail.


Brawn is something of a wild flower, yoking together natural, simple and untamed flavours with a vivacity of colour that leaps from the unassuming board or plate. They offer exceedingly well-priced lunch deals. A signature dish (especially for those a little foggy from the night before) is their juicy porchetta sandwich and for those lovers of Sunday lunch, their luxurious chicken roast is worth the crowd surf through Columbia Road flower market.

The Gallery Café

Outside of The Gallery Café’s hidey-hole of an entrance, you might think you’re in a post-impressionist painting; the bunting and woody green paints transporting you to bohemian Paris. Part of the St Margaret’s community project, this snug burrow is a non-profit vegan and vegetarian café that tempts even the most hard line carnivores. Most impressive are their vegan burgers (complete with vegan mayo and cheese) which don’t make use of those odd ‘mock-meats.’ The smoky tofu blended with a mixture of seasonal vegetables is a well-considered combination of zest and herb. Proceeds go back into the charity.


This Californian wine bar and kitchen is most likely to be your ‘noon till dusk’ choice when you see the wine list. It’s a jump from the grilled cheese sandwiches of Sager and Wilde’s original wine bar and it seems to have paid off, combining an inventive menu with their love of the grape. The waiters have excellent skills in deducing the right wine to compliment your meal with the joint ability to explain it to you confidently in minimum wine-speak (a rarity for London). While the lunch and evening menus focus on slightly Italian fare, Mission’s brunch selection is quintessentially English. The brown shrimp and samphire omelette was worthy of a fine-dining haven in Norfolk and the Boston beans on weighty slabs of doorstep bread were more Boston, Lincs than Massachusetts.

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