I’ve spoken about Brixton Market before, and it’s one of my fave foodie spots in London.
There are SO many options, from Caribbean chicken, to cheese and champagne, Eggs Royale or my favourite Franco Manca pizza – there’s literally something for everyone.
So if what you’re after is a cure for your hangover, a dash of Brazilian sunshine and some really, really, (oh god) REALLY delicious food?
Then you need to check out Carioca Brixton.
Claire, Erica and I were invited down on a drizzly Saturday morning a few weeks ago to try out their epic breakfast selection. Armed with loose dresses and red wine hangovers (courtesy of Strada), we arrived to find a teeny-tiny little restaurant bursting with color, light and friendly smiles.
We were seated at a table covered in a tropical print tablecloth, served hot fresh coffees by the lovely waiter and settled down to examine the menu. And what a menu!
Carioca serves Brazilian-inspired dishes, cooked completely from scratch in their tiny open kitchen. Everything, from the maize muffins to the spicy sauces, is all made in-house, using fresh ingredients bought daily at Brixton Market.
It took us bloomin’ ages to decide because honestly it ALL sounded fantastic… but eventually, we all went for variations of their free-range poached eggs on fluffy maize muffins.
Erica chose the Ipanema, a fantastically spicy combination of crispy chorizo sausage with capers, sundried tomatoes, chilli flakes and avocado slices. It came topped with a handful of rocket and a drizzle of salsa verde and looked sooo beautiful.
In fact, the presentation on all three dishes was just stunning (and oh so instagrammable…)
Just LOOK at that egg. *heart-eyed emoji*
Claire had originally asked for the Carioca Breakfast, but the kitchen had a bit of a miscommunication so she ended up with the Carnaval – which I don’t think she minded because it looked BEAUTIFUL!
The Carnaval is one of the (delicious) vegetarian options: sautéed bell peppers, onion, spicy pineapple, leeks, tomato and fresh plantain on a maize muffin, and topped with halloumi, a poached egg and rocket.
Not only is it vegetarian friendly, but it’s also gluten-free – how’s that for health! The maize muffins are the softest, fluffiest, most delicious things and yep, entirely gluten-free. They were perfectly seasoned, perfectly spiced and such an interesting variation on the usual English muffin.
And finally my choice: the Copacabana. Which I happen to think this was the best of the three!
My yummy maize muffin was topped with pulled braised beef, black bean stew, fried plantain and a poached egg, with rocket sprinkled on top and a dollop of sour cream on the side.
It. was. awesome.
The beef was tender and cooked in a rich and delicious gravy, the fried plantain was DELICIOUS, and the poached egg cooked to absolute perfection. It was super yummy and super comforting.
The best hangover food I’ve had in a really, really long time!
Look at those stuffed but happy faces!
You may notice that in this photo we are all cradling cocktails… Um. Yes. Yes we are. We decided that iced cocktails would be a great hangover cure. Hair of the dog y’know?
(They were really freaking delicious cocktails to be fair. Caipirinha for me and passionfruit daiquiris for the other two!)
And then, just as we thought we would never be able to fit anything else in our bellies… our waiter offered us cake.
Now, I’m not much of a sweet person. I’ll always choose a cheese board over a pudding, or a savoury starter over a dessert. But Carioca keep a stack of fresh, home-baked cakes stacked on their counter and, you guys, IT IS IMPOSSIBLE TO RESIST.
So we didn’t even try.
He bought us over a (giant) slab of white chocolate cheesecake to share, and it was perrrfect. Soft and creamy, with just the right texture and balance of flavours.
I cannot recommend this place enough.
The food was out of this world, the service was fast and friendly, and the prices are just insane.
Nearly everything on their menu is under £10. Seriously.
The brunches we had were just £7.95 each, and the portions were huge. They also do lunches and dinners, and the main meals are like £10-£12 and sound increeedible. Pulled Brazilian beef in a home-made cheesebun? Yes please. Traditional Feijoada with rice and spinach? GET IN MY BELLY.
So don’t miss out. Head down to Brixton today and grab yourself a table! They don’t take bookings and are pretty tiny, so make sure you get there early enough to grab a table.
(And save me some of that cheesecake yeah?)
25-27 MARKET ROW
*We were guests of Carioca Brixton for this visit.
As always: all thoughts, opinions, words, photos
and superfluous exclamation points are my own.