Review: Breakfast at Sam’s Kitchen

Review: Breakfast at Sam’s Kitchen

By Angela Zaher

There’s something so indulgent about going out for breakfast.  But my issue is that I’m hardly ever ready to have a fry up first thing in the morning. It takes me a little while to build up my appetite.  Plus, like many others,  I’m usually too busy herding family members into the general direction they should be travelling in; out the door.  So by the time I am ready to sit down and enjoy eggs on toast, breakfast menus have been removed to be replaced by lunch.  And I find that a bit sad. I can dry up my tears now: Sam’s Kitchen has opened up in Chiswick and it serves breakfast until 3pm.

Sam Harrison and Fanny Stocker are a winning duo when it comes to knowing how to run a successful restaurant.  Sam’s Riverside in Hammersmith is a favourite with locals and beyond. There’s its sweeping views of the river and the majestic (even when defunct) Hammersmith Bridge for a start.  But more importantly, service is consistently efficient, helpful and friendly (I have been enough times to say this with confidence).  Plus the food is always terrific- just on the right side of both ambitious and classic.  They have recently added Sam’s Waterside, Brentford to the list and have replicated the formula for the more casual offshoot, Sam’s Kitchen.  There’s one in Hammersmith and now in Chiswick. 

Sam’s Kitchen is a café- it opens daily from 8am-5pm and the kitchen closes at 3pm.  Right in the heart of Chiswick’s high street, the location in itself is a winner.  As you walk in, whether you’re lugging a pram, fresh from the gym with a water bottle in hand or it’s a laptop and a deadline to meet, everyone gets the same warm welcome.  On the day we visited, Sam himself was doing the honours whilst keeping a watchful eye on the staff to ensure that the level of service his restaurants have become known for, are maintained here. The decor is modern, bright and uplifting- it reminded me of those corner New York cafés that you see on tv with Sarah Jessica Parker dashing into to meet her friends.  

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We sought shelter in Sam’s Kitchen to escape the hailstones thundering down on a typically volatile April lunchtime- by the time we left, it was spring again. The menu is short, simple and caters for a wide range of palates. I went for Portland Crab English Muffin with poached eggs and hollandaise sauce and my teenage son predictably opted for the Hereford rump steak, fried eggs, and chimichurri on sourdough toast. Just watching the shiny bright orange yolk drench the muffin and seep onto the plate (to be wiped with bits of muffin) when the egg was punctured, was enough of a treat.  All the elements of this dish had a strong identity of their own and together made a perfect team. The steak and fried eggs were left untouched just long enough for me to take a single photo and then disappeared in a blur. Very appreciative eating sounds were heard in the brief minute it took to guzzle the entire contents of the plate and I was then looking at a very happy teenager- no small achievement.

The desserts are not written on the menu and change daily. We were lucky enough to have a lemon meringue tart with candied toasted hazelnuts on top that day and I hope you will be as lucky too – it was just delightful.  Refreshingly tart lemon curd (homemade), fluffy browned meringue droplets and crunchy hazelnuts were a dream team. 

Lively, bustling and serving great food at accessible prices, this is the café every high street wishes for. Especially Southfields, Putney or Wimbledon, please Sam.