Situated on Tib Street in the iconic Northern Quarter lies Evelyn’s Cafe. A hidden gem that boasts both eclectic flavours and beyond beautiful aesthetics.
More than just a cutesy NQ breakfast spot, Evelyn’s offers extensive food and drink menus; breakfast/brunch, a-la-carte and a special Sunday selection. With a vast array, it is sure to tickle the fancy of all who enter.
The attention to detail in Evelyn’s Cafe is nothing short of impressive. Subtle hints of copper can be found almost everywhere, from the salt and pepper shakers to table edges to light fixtures even to the cocktails. The exposed brickwork, descended industrial-style light bulbs and an abundance of hanging pot-less plants results in an effortlessly cool and undeniably stylish decor.
The cafe’s kitchen is positioned in the customer view behind the beautifully tiled counter. The clattering of cooking utensils and the sizzling of the pans surprisingly adds to the ambience of the restaurant. An unsurprising effect of the open kitchen is the array of mouth-watering aromas that tantalise the taste buds.
The service in Evelyn’s Cafe is absolutely sensational and worthy of its praise. Jason, our host, was not only warm, smiley and hospitable but had an extensive knowledge and interest of the menu.
Evelyn’s Cafe exceeds expectation and it is this that makes it shine. Even the water on the table goes above and beyond. The cucumber and mint infusion, which is served in charming old fashioned glass bottles, was extremely refreshing in taste and a wonderful alternative to what is served elsewhere.
The handmade lemonade on offer boasts a variety of unusual flavours that work beautifully well together. The blend of ginger and mint alongside the sharp acidic tang of lemon results in an aftertaste that is slightly spicy and simultaneously cooling. The elderflower lemonade on the other hand is a much sweeter alternative that is unsurprisingly an invigorating burst of citrus and floral notes.
The hot drinks available on the menu are sure to excite even the most adventurous diner. The blue latte, which is made using green and blue algae, is a sight to behold and is sure to be a novel experience to many. Made with coconut milk, the blue latte is sweet and surprisingly light. The charcoal latte on the other hand, whilst appealing to the eye, failed to wow us here at TNT.
The cocktails on offer, which as you may have already guessed, are exquisitely presented. Copper tins, dried and frosted fruits and striped straws are just some of the details that make the drinks as pleasing to the eye as they are to the taste buds. Not only is the presentation charming but the infusion of tastes warrant such a praise. The ‘Highly Stung’ cocktail, a blend of gin, blue curaçao, rhubarb liqueur and nettle and lemon cordial is an explosion of zingy refreshment.
The buttermilk pancakes, made with blueberries and honeycomb butter are a popular choice and it’s not difficult to see why. It was not only us, but customers alike, have named these pancakes “the best they have ever tasted”. To describe them as fluffy would seem to me to be an insulting understatement. The consistency is almost air-like, resembling a souffle and is an extremely moreish dish.
The sharpness of the berries goes well with the sweet, but not overpowering taste of the pancakes themselves.
The toasted Korean roll demonstrated the delectable Asian fusion of the food on offer. The chicken was seasoned well, and although the fried batter was dark in appearance, the meat was succulent and tender. The spicy chilli dressing is not for the faint hearted but the inclusion of the fried egg gives the burger a milder taste.
Another extremely popular dish is the crispy duck and plum salad. The tender duck pieces were cooked to perfection and blended beautifully with the sweet plum. The bean sprouts within the dish add a crisp crunch to every bite.
Although not a popular dish, the tuna poke taco, is a dish that should be. The raw tuna, which may put many off, is in fact a strangely satisfying. The wasabi-style dressing of the taco makes the dish worth a try.
Next up was the masala hake fish accompanied by tomato chickpeas. The crispy skin of the fish was coated with gloriously tasty and aromatic spices. The fish itself was melt-in-the-mouth soft. Whilst the chickpea side may not be to everyone’s tastes, it is a wonderfully new and untraditional accompaniment.
The grilled bavette steak is far more than what could be branded as fancy steak and chips. The tender steak is cooked medium rare, with two fried free range and organic eggs, watercress salad, vine tomatoes and shoestring fries, the dish is beautiful in both taste, texture and look.
In keeping with the theme of unusual but delicious food was the dessert of choice. The avocado, honey and lime cheesecake blends the creamy thickness of avocado with sharp tangy lime and sweet honey. Sprinkled on top was a caramel and pistachio brittle that was delightfully crunchy. A simply drizzle of honey over the cheesecake would be the only suggestion to improve to the already tasty (and gluten free) dish.
Overall, Evelyn’s Cafe Bar is a must go for anyone wishing to escape the mundane. With beautiful blends of asian flavours and beyond beautiful decor. Evelyn’s Cafe Bar is a little haven that promises new and delectable taste experiences.
TNT Food & Drink Alexia Hendrickson