Let's Cook with Meg and Ted

Cafes

Red Roaster - Yay, the best coffee in Brighton. It's good as it is, but if you want it Australian strength, ask for an extra shot in your latte. The charming Australian guy behind the counter will be happy to oblige, although one of the English waiters will always ask if you're sure: "we do make it very strong here, you know". Not strong enough, mate. Anyway, as well as brilliant coffee and lovely staff, the food is also excellent - both pear cake and lemon pie are great, and the panini with taleggio and roast vegetables is divine. I am always really confident when I go here that everything will be good - and how often can you say that about a cafe? St James St Brighton. (December 2001)

Nia - Best breakfast so far discovered in Brighton. The toast is the key - this is the only cafe I've found in Brighton yet where the breakfast toast is hand-sliced interesting bread, rather than presliced white flannel. Sometimes they have decent vegetarian sausages here, other times it's those crap vegetable croquettes with the unnaturally sharp edges, but you can't have everything. They also do good juices and coffee, and other breakfast options like pancakes, muesli, etc. Lovely location, with views of Trafalgar St from the wraparound windows, good old wooden tables (inside and out on the footpath), friendly staff. To be certain of a table at breakfast time, best to get there at 9.30 or before. I am keen to try the lunch and dinner menu soon - modern continental dishes. 87/88 Trafalgar St, (01273) 671371. Open 9am-7pm every day. (July 2003)

Mad Hatter - the raspberry and banana smoothie here is lovely all the time and especially good for hangovers. The food is also good, and quite cheap. There are always several vegetarian dishes available and you can see them being made throughout the day. Two serves of a Spanish vegetable tortilla with salads, plus a smoothie and a coffee, for 10. Western Rd, cnr Montpellier Rd, Hove. (March 2002)

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