Last Friday, we swapped our snooze buttons for a sober rave, hosted by the Cereal Killer Café at their new joint in Camden. Not your average start to the day, we’ll give you that, but fuelled by cereal and a spot of breakfast booty shaking, we emerged surprisingly perky. We like to think this rush was down to more than just the sugar (though after devouring bowls of chocolate cereal slathered in chocolate milk with a Kinder Happy Hippo balancing on top, don’t quote us on that).
It seems that breakfast is no longer the quiet affair of yore – a glass of OJ in one hand and the morning paper in the other – but instead a trend sensation. We asked Cereal Killer twin Gary Keery what he thought about the sudden surge in popularity for the once humble start to the day: ‘We just wanted to celebrate cereal and allow people to feel like a kid again. When you’re young, your mum will only let you try one cereal despite your protests, so we wanted to give people a huge choice. We import cereal from all over the world, and have fans who travel from as far as Dubai especially to visit us.’
With ‘cereal only’ being concept enough to merit a surge of online chatter, the Cereal Killer twins only gained further fame after a slight spat with Channel 4. The interviewer challenged them about charging £3.20 for a bowl of cereal in the poorest borough of London, but the twins emerged victorious after responding with an incisive open letter. This earned them a huge amount of publicity and popularity, with stampedes of milky meal enthusiasts happy to queue along Brick Lane for a bowl.
Now a host of other weird and wonderful breakfasts are popping up, each with a cult following of self-declared morning people. And this lot will show up, snap away, then spread the word on social media – all before 11am.
Ain’t no party like a breakfast party
Morning Gloryville is the East London born disco at dawn that gets people to start their day with a spot of ‘conscious clubbing’ – kind of like the cereal rave we went to, only much more mental. With fewer Happy Hippos and more superfood smoothies, this one is better suited to truly devoted health nuts. Having celebrated its second birthday this month, and spread across the UK and to cities worldwide, there are obviously more than enough clean-eating keen beans out there.
Play to your strengths
The other Cereal Killer novelty factor is the celebration of the niche – something that the Porridge Café was quick to catch on to. Serving up a glamorous, gourmet version of the well-loved breakfast hero, the café doesn’t think porridge should be restrained to just a morning treat. The asparagus, pea and mint variety, as well as the chicken and barley option are really more like risottos to be enjoyed at any time of day. Probably a good thing – if we wanted green mush at 8am, we’d head to the smoothie bar at Morning Glory instead.
Award for the most Instagrammable meal of all time goes to the guys at Symmetry Breakfast. The aesthetics are enough to make even those with the most acute perfectionist tendencies sigh with pleasure. This lot even hosted a special Symmetrical Breakfast on Valentine’s Day – because what could be more romantic than mirrored munchies with your heart’s desire? Hmmm.
As Phil and Kirsty have told us repeatedly, it’s all about location, location, location. Despite the renegade flavour combinations, Duck and Waffle has become a legendary London breakfast institution. Whisking customers up 40 floors in the centre of London is a sure-fire way to get social media tongues wagging. So too was IKEA’s recent adventure into the breakfast world with their ‘breakfast in bed’ pop-up café. Serving a selection of Scandinavian treats, the café also allowed people to consult a sleep specialist – something you may well need if purchasing a flat-pack IKEA bed.
No more plates
Finally, on our Twitter account recently, we applauded the We Want Plates movement – calling out the many establishments who seem to think plates are so passé. This won’t do anything to stop our local, The Barge House or Bunnychow, however, who’ve decided breakfast is best served in bread. That’s right, a hollowed-out loaf for the hallowed fry up. Honestly – whatever next?