Spotlight on my Favorite Places: Regency Café.
If you're looking for a quintessentially British start to the day, then start at Regency Cafe. I’ve done everything I know to resist a soup Nazi joke here, so I’ll make you a deal. No tiresome Seinfeld jokes if you just please, please show up to this local English café, and then stand in line and order and be direct and polite. Don't hold up the line. Just sit down and have your mind bashed with sausage and then slapped with ham and eggs and potato cakes and then like any good English person make your way out for other diners.
The man running the show here has a job to do and that is to feed Londoner’s their start to a London day, so that they can finish their London day. I’ve seen what happens to tourists who bluster around in here and if you aren't taking this start to London as serious as everyone else, you'll regret it.
There are no toilets. That would only stall the British Concord that is this café, but there is a cabbie’s toilet around the corner.
Just head up north on Regency Street and it's at the next intersection. There. I just saved you having to stall the foreman at the counter by asking. And if you do stall him for any reason, don't mention my name. You've been warned. The line is hit or miss, as far as how long it takes to get through, but don't worry about it. It moves.
What you should worry about is for anyone to respond to "ma’am" called out like cattle mooing for a waitress, is another place to start your morning. You can order extra ranch back home.
Here they filmed the scene in Layer Cake where Morty (played by George Harris who also plays the Auror Kingsley Shacklebolt in Harry Potter) pummels a dude, while a pre-James Bond Daniel Craig watches.
I always think of this café when I hear of the famous but unfortunate phrase, I loved London, but I just got tired of fish and chips in pubs. That’s like saying, I loved the energy of New York, but I just got tired of boiled hot dogs in dingy bars. I’m not sure in what other cities people think it would be the best idea to the majority of their dining in bars, and I’m not sure how London slipped into that category, but Regency Café is the traditional food that you’re looking for.
My great aunt used to make homemade bread for us cousins. We had family reunions at her house. She could have driven to the local supermarket, bought plastic-wrapped bread, and we would have lived another day without the threat of starvation. But when you don’t have a lot of money, you can’t spend money to show love for those around you, like big expensive f-you engagement rings. What you can spend is time and love. You can spend time and love into making ordinary things into special things.
My great aunt woke up two hours before us, used the starter she kept going for 27 years, and made us sourdough toast from scratch. It was warm and fluffy on the inside and crunchy on the outside. Everybody felt that warmth.
That is the magic behind a place like Regency Café.