I’ve already admitted how much I don’t like getting up early on a Saturday, but after the last Michelin-starred breakfast, organised by the Birmingham Breakfast Club, I knew it would be worth sacrificing my lie in for.
This time round it was the newly refurbished Simpson’s who were serving up breakfast. The Grade II listed building in Edgbaston has undergone an extensive change, some ten years after their previous major refurb. The main dining room has been extended to one big room rather than a collection of smaller ones, and the interior is crisp and contemporary. Nathan Eades, formerly of Epi at The Courtyard, has also recently become Simpson’s new head chef, under the guise of chef owner Andreas Antona and chef director Luke Tipping.
If the previous Michelin-starred breakfast at Adam’s was the best version of a fry-up I’ve ever had, then Simpson’s went for a completely different tack – but equally good. Nathan and his team created a three course breakfast, where each dish an example of a typical breakfast; kedgeree for a starter, full English as main and granola for pudding.
Ahead of the first course we were given juice, tea or coffee and delicious, delicious toast. Seriously, toast is entirely underrated but if you get it right, it can make a great start to breakfast. Service was impeccable, which is typical of a Michelin-starred restaurant, admittedly, but this wasn’t over the top either – don’t you just hate it when you feel like you’re on show whilst trying to eat? Thankfully this wasn’t the case, but everything was tended to as needed.
The first course of kedgeree was re-interpreted as smoked haddock risotto, with capers, parsley and quails egg. The risotto element meant it was a wetter version than usual kedgeree but a lovely twist on it. In fact the twisted on a classic was echoed in the main course of full English too, which was a crispy duck egg, chorizo and coco bean, confit tomatoes, walnut puree and smoked bacon emulsion. I loved how the duck egg was wrapped in a nest, ready to be cracked open with a deliciously oozing egg yolk. The chorizo and coco bean were a clever alternative to baked beans and their twist on brown sauce was delightful.
And to finish we had breakfast pudding. I’m really coming round to the idea that all means should have some sort of pudding to them. For the Simpson’s breakfast pudding we had granola – English apples (and some blueberries, I think), yoghurt and toasted almond granola. I went through a bit of a phase of granola about a year ago and for some reason haven’t eaten it since, so this was an excellent reminder. The sweet yet slightly tart fruit with the creamy yoghurt and crunchy granola was a superb end to a great meal – and definitely worth getting up early on a Saturday for.
The Birmingham Breakfast Club have organised another of the Simpson’s breakfasts, but I think tickets are sold out. However, if you’re interested in attending one of their special event breakfasts (and I’m really hoping there’s a third version) then it’s worth keeping an eye on their twitter account @BrumBrekkieClub.
Disclosure: I paid for my own ticket to the Simpson’s and Birmingham Breakfast Club event. So there.