Residing in a basement on Trafalgar St, Brighton Cereal Café is putting a new spin on a breakfast standard. When we headed to their opening night, we were perhaps a little apprehensive about how the concept might play out in real life. Even though we arrived 15 minutes after opening, we were lucky to get a seat.
It’s a small venue, maybe twenty covers, but it feels homely rather than cramped. The early ’00s Beano Annuals, VHS tapes and crayons were a nice touch, though a troubling reminder that the features of my childhood have turned in to decorative suggestions of an era.
Blinded by Cap’n’s and Froot Loops, Puffs and Pebbles, it was hard to make a confident decision. Eventually we decided on Lion Bar Clusters with oat milk and unicorn charms with frosting and custard milk. While enjoyable, the British palate might be inclined to call them a dessert instead of breakfast. One of the owners brought over Lucky Charm flavoured ice cream after we’d finished. It was great, particularly because I felt it was honest about its pudding-based place in the world.
The guys running the place were friendly and efficient, no small feat for an opening morning. Opening a cereal cafe is not for the faint-hearted. If you’re new to the concept, selling sugary goods might seem an unconfrontational pursuit, but a similar cafe came under fire for selling cereal by the bowl. It’s unfair to target one establishment for wider issues within cafe culture. If people are willing to pay £10+ for incarnations of eggs and bread, I don’t think £3-4 is too much to ask for an imported product with a choice of ten milks.
Brighton Cereal Cafe is a great spot for kids, city visitors and nostalgic evenings with friends. While it might not be an everyday kind of place – scribbling on tables and walls, while eating brightly coloured cereal covered in frosting, is everything my six-year-old-self dreamed adulthood could be.