Gushing in Goring. Pierrepont’s Cafe
NOTE : Andrew and Eilidh no longer cook here and I have not been back since they left so cannot vouch for the food now
They don’t even have a website – that’s how off the radar they are. I’m in two minds as to whether or not I should share this little treasure, but on the basis that it’s an hour’s drive from Central London, I think that the chances of hordes of people suddenly descending when they can’t get into Ottolenghi on a Saturday morning are probably pretty remote.
Not that they’d be disappointed, mind you. It doesn’t profess to be other than it is – which is a bloody good cafe, in a pretty Thames-side location. My breakfast yesterday for example, boiled egg with marmite soldiers; perfect egg, toast home-made, and thick white bread. Just the right amount of marmite (you don’t want to drown the eggy flavour) and butter (obviously you need both – duh). A side order of soda bread with (obviously home-made) preserves was the side order I didn’t really need, but what is need exactly, when faced with such deliciousness? Add to that a very competent cappuccino and the Saturday papers and it on the brink of perfect. All they needed was to be playing Radio 4 in the background and I think I might have died.
C had the full English. I had to look away from the horror of the men in black lycra. What is it with these men and their little stick legs? No, it really doesn’t look good and leaves nothing to the imagination. Yes, I’m so happy that you’ve found the meaning of life in your late 40’s and have a bike the price of a small car, but I’m in a cafe for breakfast and no, I don’t want to see your lunch-box at this point, or indeed ever, thanks).
So to get over the shock of eye-level tackle, I ogled the plateful of fried deliciousness next to me. Yes, on the face of it, your bog-standard full English but actually, so not standard in these parts, starved as we are of quality caffs. It came (as you will no doubt by now have guessed) with a perfect pork sausage, beautifully grilled mushrooms, home-made baked beans (no Heinz purist, me) perfectly cooked fried egg and bacon, not too greasy, plus grilled tomato and fried bread, I can tell you, it almost had me eating meat again.
Were I on an outing of sheer piggery, instead of just mild gluttony, I would have had the French toast//maple syrup combo (you can add bacon), or the sour cherry pancakes with cream and butter, or the home-smoked kippers, or the home-made porridge. There is just everything you would want, and more . And light lunches/sandwiches, again of the wholesome, home made/well-sourced variety. I’ll be back for these, and tell you what they are. For the moment, though, I am overwhelmed by breakfast joy, however and can’t quite get past that bit on the menu.
It’s really good value too, for the quality of the ingredients, cooking and the generosity of the servings. You can buy local and decent bread, homemade cakes, cards and little gifts. It’s just got a great feel. I have only one criticism. It’s not in my village. YET.
Pierreponts Cafe, High St, Goring-on-Thames RG8 9AB
Tel 01844 874464