Monday 16 September 2013

The New Club, Brighton

When I saw the the Division of Health Psychology Conference this year was to be in Brighton, I jumped at the opportunity to visit the quirky and vibrant seaside town as I'd heard such fantastic things! I'm not sure I could have planned it better myself because the week of the conference actually feel on the Brighton and Hove Food and Drink festival which allowed me to really get stuck into some of the foodie delights Brighton has to offer!

I thought I'd begin the first of many Brighton blogs, in 'The New Club' which coins itself as an LA Indie Coffee house, mixed with a New York bar and diner. Now having visited both of these wonderful places in the States, I have to say it had a lot to live up to!

View from the restaurant.
Being directly next to my hotel, I jumped at the opportunity to try this place out for breakfast initially, and then returned on a recommendation from a waiter for a burger the following lunchtime so I will cover both visits within this entry! As you can tell from the above picture, it really does have extremely impressive views of the seafront, and the West Pier especially (something I found really eye-catching as I took my morning walk). This prime location seemed to fit the feel of the place perfectly with it's welcoming and friendly staff (if a little too hip and trendy for me!) and its small, well formed menu.

Inside with neat feature wall.
The restaurant itself was really new, only having opened in March 2013, but it already seemed to have a nice following of tourists and locals alike all seemingly enjoying their selections from the menu. Their breakfast menu goes on until 1pm - which I think is great, especially if you've been out the night before and need some much needed breakfast grub upon waking! I opted for their 'Hash and Eggs' - which also came with some smokey bacon. I chose this for two main reasons really a) because I'd had American bacon, and was positively sure they wouldn't be able to recreate its crispness, and b) because I seriously adore a good hash brown!

Hash and Eggs
At £7.50 I thought it was quite pricey for a breakfast dish, but from the second it arrived I definitely wasn't disappointed! I was proven completely wrong on the bacon front as it was salty and perfectly crisp, and it came with three huge hash browns and runny eggs - just how I like them! The hash browns were delicious, made from tiny thin strands of potato, soft on the inside crispy on the outside, and I was really surprised at the size of the portion. Now I wouldn't go to say it beats the American diners I frequented during my travels but it's pretty close for sure, and I'd definitely recommend to any passers by!

Dirty Burger
When I went for lunch I opted for one of their burgers. As I mentioned before their menu is pretty small - which always fills me up with hope as it usually means they work hard to get the dishes exactly right! There are the options of a clean burger, a cheese burger, a veggie burger (made from butternut squash, mixed beans and cashews - thought that sounded delicious too) and my choice, 'The Dirty Burger'. This came with their standard 35 day beef (served pink and juicy) and Monterey jack cheese, but also hickory smoked bacon/onion relish, sliced pickles, shredded cabbage and a brioche bun.
As you can see the actual burger was huge, and kind of annoyingly served on a teeny plate, which made it quite difficult to eat, however it tasted really amazing. The patty was very well cooked and the mixture of all of the sides such as the sweet soft bun and tangy crisp gherkin, worked well together both texturally and flavour wise as well.

The burger itself came with a side of fries (which I was happy about...sometimes they do not include these and it makes it an extremely pricey meal!) and I have to say these absolutely made the meal for me. They were quite possibly the nicest chips I've ever eaten, so crispy, and not overly salty which I loved. Also despite the size of the bowl you got a surprisingly decent sized portion, I really couldn't find fault with them!
My only tiny gripe (and it really is so small) was that the sauce comes in a shot glass, which for me was only just enough to get through my fries (and was quite annoying to get the sauce out of! I'm sure I could have asked again and they would have happily got me another one though so it was just a small frustration on my part and nothing to worry about!

I would highly recommend The New Club, for both breakfast and lunch/dinner, the chefs really know what they are doing, and the other dishes which left the kitchen looked equally scrummy! Even if a little pricey (by my usual Norfolk standards anyway) I would say it was definitely worth the money and I wouldn't hesitate to visit again...especially for those hash browns!

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