It’s a little known fact that Market Street’s teahouse Sugardough offers a generous brunch menu. Even lesser known is that this dainty little bakery – which only seats 20 – also serves a cheeky trio of cocktails (think espresso martinis, mimosas and a Cherry Bakewell-inspired concoction) to accompany Brighton’s favourite meal of the day. Keen to impress a friend I’m hosting from Germany on her first ever visit to Brighton, I decide to make a trip to take full advantage of Sugardough’s menu, and to see whether its renowned baking talent extends to their other culinary offerings.
We’re met by Sugardough’s ‘Brighton blue’ exterior, and nestle our way in to a window-side table in the heaving cafe, predictably busy for a Sunday morning. Our waitress Izzy greets us with menus, which we peruse with awe. While you’ll find standard coffee shop fare on the drinks menu, there’s also more unusual concoctions such as a turmeric flat white and real Belgian hot chocolate topped with marshmallows – plus a selection of mouthwatering loose leaf teas (strawberries and cream, anyone?). We opt for the fresh orange juice (sweet with bits – just the way it should be), as well as a black americano for myself and a flat white for my friend. It’s then time to take a look at the food menu, divided into:
Oats and fruit (bircher muesli, granola and porridge)
Bakery (croissants and danishes)
Bread & eggs (croque madame and brunches)
Cakes & treats
Mildly hungover from the previous evening, our gluttony gets the better of us, and we order three plates to fill our bellies with: the French toast (eggy croissant with maple syrup, fruit compote and added bacon – £9.90), and from the lunch menu the smashed avocado (with feta & mint on sourdough, £7.90) and potato rosti, wilted spinach, smoked haddock, poached egg and avocado hollandaise (£11.90)
We’re not disappointed. Though it’s a little bit of a squeeze getting our plates onto our tiny rounded table for two, we manage after a little manoeuvring and tuck in. The potato rosti offers a lovely alternative to the typical gluten-y base of bread – in fact, with its more complex flavours, I find it far preferable. The haddock is soft and buttery, while the avocado hollandaise sees the best of both flavours brought out in the dish. Though enough to fill up the average stomach, it’s light enough to not leave me feeling bloated (and even spares a bit of space for bites of the smashed avocado we’ve ordered to share).
The millennial-favourite dish is a treat too, with the feta and mint perfectly balancing out the other, all topped off with the sweetness of grated beetroot on top.
Meanwhile, my dining partner – between satisfied ‘mms’ and ‘aahs’ and bites – that her French toast really hits the spot too. While bacon and maple syrup is an already established perfect flavour combination (depending on how the bacon is fried, to which the answer is always well done),the addition of pineapple to this winning dish is a pleasant surprise we agreed really helps the plate stand out.
While the food is an event in itself, we felt a really big shout out is deserved for the Sugardough staff, who were incredibly friendly and welcoming throughout the duration of our visit. To Joe, the manager, and front of house staff Izzy, Frank and Callum – thank you. Our visit to Sugardough gave my friend an unforgettable first trip to our city – and, for me, huge friend points.
Who says conviviality is dead?
Sugardough’s extensive breakfast, brunch and lunch menu is served from 8am – 5pm every day of the week, while cakes and bakes treats are served from 7am to 6.30pm