160 Piccadilly, London W1J 9EB, UK
Housed in a former bank building, the Wolseley was transformed by starchitect David Collins into the quintessential European grand café in 2003 and has been the place for high-powered breakfasts and see-and-be seen lunches ever since. The imposing room with its high-ceilings, marble columns and massive arches is softened by the always convivial atmosphere. Breakfast at the Wolseley will brighten the grayest of London days. The onetime car showroom and then Barclay’s Bank branch has a vibe similar to La Coupole in Paris. Take refuge and sip a charged Lapsong tea or a thimbleful of espresso with a perfect cap of crema. Fill up on the birchermüesli —a cereal with grated apple, raisins, dried cranberries, hazelnuts, honey, milk and cream. Or for those who would rather have a traditional start, try the porridge with brown sugar. Hedonists should go for the heavenly pancakes with caramelized bananas or the rich eggs Benedict; the extra calories never felt so worth it. The Dover sole at lunch is a crowd pleaser. Up a staircase is a lovely private dining room for groups up to 12 in size.
Written by Elena Bowes