A week of Croydon breakfasts

I wrote an article for Croydonist describing my week of having breakfast out in Croydon every day, from a different culture each time. Unfortunately there wasn’t room in the article to include all the relevant information, so here are the bits that got cut.

Monday: Pakistan – Halwa Poori House, London Road

The details

  • Address: Halwa Poori House, 1033 London Road, Thornton Heath, CR7 6JF
  • Phone: 020 8239 1675
  • Hours: Mon-Fri: 9:30am-2am; Sat-Sun: 6am-2am
  • Accessibility: A small step to get in, and another small step to the toilets
  • Style: Casual restaurant
  • Cost: £5 for halwa poori including two poori; £2 for a cup of masala tea

Other places to get halwa poori

Karachi Cuisine a few doors down at 1113-1115 London Road, SW16 4XD (020 8689 6868) does halwa poori in rather more upmarket surroundings, but only on the weekend.

Tuesday: Turkey – Muncho, St George’s Walk

The details

  • Address: Muncho, 22–24 St George’s Walk, Croydon, CR0 1YG
  • Phone: 020 8688 1616
  • Hours: Mon-Fri: 9am-2:30pm; Sat-Sun: closed
  • Accessibility: The front door is a bit stiff to open, but it’s step-free to get in, and step-free throughout once you’re in, including to the toilet (a reasonably spacious unisex cubicle)
  • Style: Upmarket but unpretentious cafe
  • Cost: £5 for Turkish breakfast; £1.10 for a (quite large) cup of tea

Wednesday: Jamaica – Brixton Caribbean Cuisine, London Road

The details

  • Address: Brixton, 21 London Road, West Croydon, CR0 2RE
  • Phone: 020 8686 3999
  • Hours: Mon-Sun: 7am-midnight
  • Accessibility: A small step to get in, no more than an inch or so; there’s no toilet
  • Style: Takeaway with seating; order and pay at the counter, and everything is in disposable packaging
  • Cost: £6 for salted mackerel and bananas; £1 for a cup of tea

Other places to get Jamaican breakfast

Ackee and saltfish is available at most of Croydon’s Caribbean cafes and restaurants, including The Dutchie at 3 The Arcade, 32–34 High Street, CR0 1YB (020 8667 0132), Little Mobay at 95 South End, CR0 1BG (020 8688 7430), and Caribsoul at 46 George Street, CR0 1PB (020 8686 8009). Little Mobay and Caribsoul also offer a “porridge of the day”.

Thursday: Ghana – Mega Mall, Station Road

The details

  • Address: Mega Mall, 30-32 Station Road, West Croydon, CR0 2RB
  • Phone: 020 8680 0675
  • Hours: Mon-Fri: 7am-8pm; Sat: 8am-7pm; Sun: afternoon only
  • Accessibility: A small step in, no more than an inch or so, but the door is quite stiff, and there’s only one seat, on a tall-ish stool at a counter; there’s no toilet
  • Style: Takeaway with very limited seating
  • Cost: £1.40 for koko; £1 for four buffloat (I ate two with my koko and took the others home for later)

Other places to get Ghanaian breakfast

Waakye is also available a few doors down at Finger Licking, 14 Station Road, CR0 2RB (020 8680 8886), and around the corner at Timber Gardens, 161 London Road, CR0 2RJ (020 8686 5769). Both of these are restaurants with proper seating, though Finger Licking is smaller and much more casual than Timber Gardens.

Friday: South India – Saravanaa Bhavan, George Street

The details

  • Address: Saravanaa Bhavan, 18 George Street, Croydon, CR0 1PA
  • Phone: 020 8286 9940
  • Hours: Mon-Sun: 10:30am-10pm
  • Accessibility: No steps to get in, but toilets are in the basement, down a flight of stairs with a hard-to-grasp handrail on both sides
  • Style: Restaurant
  • Cost: £4.95 for tomato and onion uthappam including sambal and chutneys on the side; £2.25 for a large masala tea

Other places to get uthappam

Plenty of South Indian places have uthappam on the menu; examples include Navaratna at 60 South End, CR0 1DP (020 8686 7468) and Kalpa at 5-7 St James’s Road, CR0 2SB (020 8684 6661). Note that there are several ways to spell this dish, including uttapam, oothappam, utthappam, and so on.

Saturday: England – Croydon Park Hotel, Altyre Road

The details

  • Address: Croydon Park Hotel, 7 Altyre Road, East Croydon, CR9 5AA
  • Phone: 020 8680 9200
  • Hours: Breakfast buffet available Mon-Fri: 6:30am-10am; Sat-Sun: 7am-10:30am
  • Accessibility: Step-free to the buffet, most of the seating, and the toilets (including an accessible one with a large cubicle and grab bars)
  • Style: Upmarket
  • Cost: £14.50 for unlimited visits to the buffet plus freshly-made tea and coffee

Other places to get a hotel breakfast buffet

Most of Croydon’s hotels are more than happy to cater for non-residents. Jurys Inn at 26 Wellesley Road, Croydon, CR0 9XY (020 8448 6000) is one option (and somewhat cheaper than Croydon Park Hotel, too).

Sunday: China – Tai Tung, Wing Yip Centre, Purley Way

The details

  • Address: Tai Tung, Units 1–1A, Wing Yip Centre, 544 Purley Way, Croydon, CR0 4RF
  • Phone: 020 8688 0117
  • Hours: Mon-Sat: 11am-11pm; Sun: 11am-10pm
  • Accessibility: Step-free access to all areas, if potentially somewhat roundabout; the toilets and some of the seating are on the upper floor, but there’s a lift very close by in the main lobby of the centre, and the restaurant has entrances on both floors
  • Style: Busy, lively restaurant
  • Cost: Our bill came to £15/head including unlimited tea

Other places to get dim sum

Croydon’s only other proper dim sum restaurant is Royal Garden, Shirley Hills Road, CR0 5HQ (020 8654 0170). Miso Noodle Bar at 11–12 Suffolk House, George Street, CR0 1PE (020 8681 5084) offers a dozen or so dim sum items, albeit at high enough prices that it would be hard to get a decent spread of choices without overspending. Wei Dao at 103–105 High Street, CR0 1QG (020 3719 9840) has half a dozen dim sum dishes at more reasonable prices, but they’re all steamed, whereas a proper dim sum meal requires a balance of steamed, fried, and baked items.