Disclaimer: This is a pretty meaty blog post. Other than a reference to an Earl Grey and hazelnut porridge, Vegans and Vegetarians, may want to look away now (although if you can suggest any totally gawgeous vegan / vegetarian places for Devon Knows to check out, please get in touch).
So we knew Meat #59 of Abbey Road in Torquay (famed for its epicly juicy burgers) but heard on the Facebookvine that the #59ers had opened a new gaff in Exeter’s cute and quirky Magdalene Road. What really lured us in was a post relating to a meat feast of a brunch, accompanied by a mouth watering image of a rather fabulous (but not hugely suspicious) sausage. So with sausage in mind we decided to check it out of a Saturday morn.
Vix was first to arrive fresh from the gym and by fresh, we mean disgusting. Truly disgusting. And wearing a Top Gun vest. The fact that she was even allowed in the joint, was an automatic win. On entering for the first time you would be forgiven for thinking that the premises merely consists of one relatively large table and a bar. Cue the small staircase to the right which leads upstairs to where the magic happens. Quirkiness awaits with a decent sized but not lofty seated area, leading through to a sun trap of a room which feels ever so like the small and cosy conservatory of an eccentric but loveable aunt.
Other than the nutty aunt’s wing, the main interior is a tad too dimpsy but the #59ers have recognised this and did mention the need for a little more light. The general ambiance is good but some teething problems with the sound system have left things a little quiet up to now.
The brunch menu is short, sharp and bang on with something to tickle the buds of many. There’s a hearty full English, the Earl Grey rice porridge topped with hazelnut crumble and lime zest, local asparagus with broccoli and blood orange hollandaise; and a smoked bacon layer potato with sausage, bacon and black pudding roll.
What Michelle plumped for was the ‘Share Eggs’ for one (suggest re-naming the single person option to ‘I don’t wanna Share Eggs) a chorizo (enter Michelle’s ‘thaaaaareeeeechooo’ pronunciation) and peppers in a smoked paprika heritage tomato sauce with crumbled feta, coriander and a poached egg (with toasted sour dough on the side). Vix went for the crumpets with poached eggs, chorizo, avocado, hollandaise and salsa. See images for epic standard of food (it helps if on viewing these images you also sing internally ‘Flash! Ahaaaaa, he’ll save everyone one of us’).
So why did we love it?
- The staff are just really good eggs (titter). Vix was not only rocking ‘how not to dress or smell for a funky meat eatery’ but she arrived early and enjoyed a great cup o’ java without any pressure to hurry up and order.
- Speaking of the java, the coffee is delicious. No burnt old beans at Meat #59 no sireeey. You get the good stuff.
- The food took an appropriate amount of time to arrive (not too quick that you know it’s been dinged and not too long that you know you’ve been forgotten) and was simply show stopping in terms of presentation (think Katherine Zeta Jones in Chicago).
- These guys know how to cook, and whoever the chef is deserves to be cradled softly in the arms of each and every customer. Vix (who basically lives for breakfast) nearly had a movie tear when she cut through her eggs to reveal yokey gooey goodness.
- The servings don’t look epicly huge, but taste darn skippy and were exceedingly (Kipling doesn’t own the rights to that) filling.
- It’s worth every penny. £8.50 for a breakfast may seem a little steep to some, but you’re paying for a great environment, friendly staff who offer fantastic service, you can taste that the ingredients are top notch in quality and you’re seriously not going to have to eat for hours afterwards.
Meat #59 is still the new kid on the block in Exeter and they appear to have got into their groove just dandy. At the moment it’s missing maybe just a few little extras that will take it from what is already a utterly splendid place, to something off the chart.
For what it’s worth (and whatda we know) we’d suggest binning the ipad, grabbing a turntable and getting a library of great vinyl’s for customers to pick and choose from; and maybe stocking up on (or offering) some newspapers to give the early arrivers (or single diners) something to peruse.
Overall Devon Knows Exeter’s Meat #59 Brunch a very big chorizo and egg soaked thumbs up. It’s a completely fab place in a totally fab spot. These guys know what they’re doing and we defy anyone not to enjoy the experience. We’ll definitely be back for more meat (and lollies).