According to the blurb in the Copper Kettle’s menu, “Seaview once boasted three banks, a large number of butchers, bakers and grocers, antiques and curiosity shops and was once a bustling centre of commerce”. This is hard to imagine, particularly in winter when the population of the village dwindles. However, at the beginning of the season – a very early Easter – there were plenty of people taking the bracing air and enjoying their breakfast at the Copper Kettle.
Matt and Cat had previously visited the café, having enjoyed such a nice pot of tea they decided to make a return visit to sample the food. The quaint little tea shop was almost full when they arrived, just one table left. It was a very homely atmosphere for breakfast; windows slightly steamy, the smell of toast and bacon and the radio gently warbling in the background. There were home-made cakes in a glass cabinet and Matthew was delighted to see simnel cake for sale, complete with its marzipan apostles.
Just in time to order breakfast, Matt and Cat studied the small menu, noting with interest that egg and bacon bap (£2.20) in the breakfast menu became bacon bap (£2.20) in the light snacks menu. Still, Matt was not going to bother with such a modest meal, as usual he opted for the full breakfast.
Full English breakfast is a variable feast; in some establishments it is a positive mountain of meat and dairy products, mushrooms, beans and tomatoes. Other, more parsimonious venues will palm you off with cocktail sausages, re-constituted mushrooms and a single triangle of cold toast (you know who you are Colchester farmhouse B & B!). Fortunately for Matt – although possibly not so good for his arteries – the breakfast at the Copper Kettle came into the first category. Lean bacon, sausages, fried tomatoes, a runny egg and fried potatoes jostled for position on the plate. Hot brown toast was served on the side and was put to good use – great for mopping up the egg’s yolky heart.
Cat, with her more modest appetite and haunted by memories of an overwhelmingly huge cooked breakfast the previous week in Gloucester, was more cautious in her choice of meal. Egg and bacon were the order of the day and the kind staff at the Copper Kettle were quite happy to swap the bap for some toast. Good job too, as the perfect runny egg would have been a messy beast to eat in a bap – Cat may be sloppy but she was pleased not to have an eggy chin!
Both breakfasts were washed down with fresh coffee, which seems to be a speciality of the café. In fact, there is a whole page in the menu and an entire wall in the café dedicated to hot drinks, including the local-sounding Carisbrooke blend tea and the more continental Milano, Americano and Macchiato coffees.
So, for a breakfast, the Copper Kettle will satisfy and, as Matt and Cat had already discovered, there is no finer place in Seaview for a pot of afternoon tea. Unless you know better… Recommended.