Saturday 10 March 2012

Campania: Columbia Road Market

The perennial attraction that is Columbia Road Flower Market rumbles on - packed to the rafters every Sunday with people who would not normally consider going any further East than Liverpool Street.  On Sundays between 11 and 2, however, it is "safe" to go that bit further East and my do the restaurants seek to capitalise on these new found adventurers.  Places that do not open for the rest of the week throw open their doors, tables heaving with croissants, the smell of freshly brewed coffee wafts along the street.

Living as I do about a ten minute walk from the market, I too am constantly drawn by the attractions on offer.  However, such is my sense of slumber on a Sunday morning, that I do not normally make it along much before one. By this time the regulars are in residence and it is impossible to get a table without waiting for far longer than the food probably deserves.  So I normally buy a plant and leave (I now have far to many- my flat is stating to resemble some kind of East end jungle), feeling destined never to sample the delicacies on offer.

Not so a couple of weeks ago.  An early night saw me rise at 9.  I was on Columbia Road for 11.  This was quite astounding for me.  One place in particular, Campania, has always had a certain allure.  A constant queue means its good right?  Today I was to find out - there was a table!

I went for the poached eggs with nduja on toast (spicy sausage from Italy which you squish onto bread).  The Fashionista had the fried eggs with chili. 

Now lets start with the good points - the bread was delicious sourdough, the nduja was very good indeed, the coffee nice.

Set against that were incredibly overcooked poached eggs, the yolks were cooked solid like little yellow gobstoppers.  The nduja was a mere smear, the toast half a slice.  The fried eggs were at least runny but were again served with only half a slice of toast.  For around seven pounds I expect more, much more.  Or if not much more, then at least a whole slice of bread!

Campania looks great.  People seem to like it.  Maybe it was an off day, maybe they were just warming up until the crowds arrived.  Sadly it just didn't live up to the standards I would expect from a place apparently so revered.

Campania Gastronomia on Urbanspoon

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