At the top of London Road you’ll find Circus Parade – for a long time a strange, degenerate little corner that added to the shabby reputation London Road is still slowly trying to forget. Finally, and a few months ago now after a newly developed building, Café Plenty opened its doors beneath as a micro-bakery, café, tea and coffee house, and brought with it a breath of fresh air.
I’ve been hearing good things ever since and seen a lot of lovely Instagram posts, but don’t often find myself spending time around this part of town, so I finally decided to commit myself for a few hours and check it out.
Food and Coffee
Plenty has an open and contemporary look, with an incredibly inviting food display as soon as you walk in and additional menu board to fuel your indecisiveness! Not just all bread and pastry (though you know I’m never one to complain about that), Plenty have err, plenty of vegetarian and vegan options for lunches, with options for additional side salads, as well as breakfast dishes such as yoghurt and granola or even french toast! It’s nice to come across a bakery and coffee shop where you have more choice than a croissant, sausage roll or toasted sandwich, and with more of a healthy feel too. My favourite things on this earth usually revolve around bread, pastry and cheese but the older I’ve gotten, the more my body has to tell me that I cannot eat this every day without feeling – or showing – it!
The first time I stopped by I chose a vegetarian focaccia (vegan options also available) with side salad and a flat white, which came to £5.90 – very reasonable for Brighton café / coffee shop prices! The food was really fresh and delicious, with a nice crunchy salad to compensate for my bready sins. I picked a cute little spot for my set-up and spent a while reading Harry Potter and organising myself.
Since this visit, I’ve also stopped for breakfast on a remote working day and chose a yoghurt, granola and fruit pot, which was packed full of fruit and very refreshing! Although I’m not keen on food being served in plastic/cardboard pots so that was a bit of a shame for me.
Espresso beans at Plenty are provided by local favourite Coffee at 33 and offered at fairly competitive prices too. My initial flat white was spot on, although the mocha I ordered most recently with breakfast failed to impress, with high foam levels and bad milk quality so I’m hoping that was just a one off! There is nothing worse than finding a great café and being put off by bad coffee.
The surrounding walls and space have quite an industrial feel, with low hanging rope lights, metal stools and bare walls, but the artwork, colours and atmosphere transform the café and create a wonderful workspace, social meeting spot or place to relax on your own for a while. Plenty was already busy with meeting mums, freelancers and groups when I arrived and seemed to constantly attract people to the area.
In the space of two weeks between my visits, I noticed the artwork had also changed over and was replaced with grungy pieces and Nirvana portraits (❤️ ) so Plenty also seem to host a variety of different types of art, which is always great to see.
I definitely see this being a third place for a lot of people, and have already seen this in action. It’s great to know there is a space to relax, eat fresh food and even get some work done so close to home, and I’ve already recommended Plenty to others for remote working, its meeting room and good, fresh food!
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