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millionreasons in londonbreakfast

Babble Jar Bar and Diner, 176 Stoke Newington High Street, N16

Babble Jar bar and diner used to be a fish restaurant, which suffered from being on the high street and therefore ignored by the fine diners of Stoke Newington Church Street. Now it's a bar-diner with a short food menu of breakfast, sandwiches, salads and an extensive cocktail list, presumably hoping to capture the yummy parents of N16 by day and the hipsters of Dalston by night.

(Photo from their website)

My partner had the veggie breakfast, comprising portobello mushroom filled with baked beans, three (3!) hash browns, poached eggs, half a grilled tomato, veggie sausage, roasted pepper, and toast for £6.95.

He observed that the eggs were both a little too hard (yoke) and a bit too soft (white) and whilst the roast pepper was an interesting addition, it was a little too sweet for (a savoury) breakfast. He liked the mushrooms, beans, hash brown and sausage.

I had the babble breakfast (£7.50), which was an odd mixture - poached eggs on toast with mozzarella, balsamic vinegar, rocket, avocado and soft cheese:- it was a strange but not unpleasant combination. The main problem was that the bar seemed to have a literal open door policy, creating not only a cold draught but also letting in the noise and pollution of the A10. So my meal went cold pretty quickly and there's nothing more depressing than a cold poached egg.

Staff were very friendly, the sofas were squashy, the coffee (an additional £2.20) was pretty good, but they need to, as Larry Grayson used to exclaim, shut that door.