I heard a lot about this place but never tried it till today and I have to say that it is really worth a try (or two, or three...)
If you see it from the outside, you won't find anything fancy here, but if you step inside, you'll find a cheap and nice menu and helpful and cheerful staff.
We went for late breakfast/brunch and, as per recommendation, I went straight to have a look at the pancakes menu. Amazing how for just £5-£6 you can have a massive breakfast with coffee included.
I ordered 'Pancake menu #2' as I'm not too fond of having my sweet and savoury food mixed together and when it came I was like 'wow': tomatoes, scrambled eggs, bacon, pancakes and fruit!
The orange juice was pretty good as well and the coffee was just OK, but if your dish is full of delicious food, who cares?
Definitely, saving this spot as one of my favourite places to have a massive breakfast!
338 is a greasy spoon with "new bethnal green" aspirations. There's queueing
The food does look lovely, although the coffee leaves a *lot* to be desired.
It's pretty reasonable, it's definitely a lot of food and also a lot of waiting. It's worth the wait outside, which will generally take you 15 ish minutes depending on the queue. We found our longest wait was once inside and it took more than a half hour to get food, to the point that other people were sitting, eating and leaving before we got served. I'm guessing it's a fluke and everything was lovely once it came.
Go for the pancake menu.
Really good breakfast, great fried halloumi with the veggie pancake menu, fresh orange juice, crispy hash browns... spot on. Shame the service is so slow (we waited over half an hour for our food). We didn't have to queue today but it's definitely a busy place. The low prices are what make this place so great, amazing value. I'll be coming back for sure, but will make sure I'm only just hungry so that I'm starving by the time I eat ;-)
Best place on earth to have breakfast! Really cheap. Friendly and nice staff. Great options for breakfast just for £5-£6 (including coffee or tea)
Fancy a hangover cure for the weekend? Make sure you get in early otherwise you will be queuing for a while.
cheap big breakfasts. Usually a queue, too, always a good sign.
I usually keep my 5 stars for very special, fancy or luxury restaurants, but I will make an exception here.
Everytime I come to Cafe 338 with some of our visiting family and friends, enjoying the faces they make when they see the place the first time, when we get served, and when we leave.
I'm always amazed how efficient the cooks are, moving with dexterity in such a tiny kitchen, and how the waitresses keep track of so many people and orders with such many tables and little space to walk through...
English breakfast is a must, but any other kind of combination is usually succulent.
The plates presentation also remains unequalled among breakfast places.
WARNING: this place is dangerously delicious. Oh, and it has a massive queue on weekend mornings/afternoons, so bring a newspaper and be prepared to wait.
This is my local brunch joint/hangover spot/place where I eat when I can't be bothered (aka hangover spot). Most of my neighbours who frequent this place seem to treat it in the same way that I do, explaining the bedraggled-looking, flannel-wearing, cigarette-scented crowd that you see here at noontime on Sundays. There's even a nice, little outdoor seating area for when it's not pouring with rain outside (= half-drunk hipsters on display).
There's a little bit of everything at Cafe 338 - (as mentioned above) heaping portions of breakfast foods, a variety of Middle-Eastern themed salads and wraps (halloumi galore), and the more traditional 'diner' food like burgers and greasy, breaded and fried potato and onion products, yay. And to keep said hipsters (and me) happy, there's a huge selection of veg options, including a full English with mock Glamorgan sausages and veggie bacon.
As other reviewers have mentioned, the food here fills the stomach without emptying the wallet - no plate is over £7, and in fact, most are under £5 (this is probably why it's cash only). The waitstaff is incredibly pleasant and accommodates all sorts of strange requests and dish substitutions without a bat of the eyelash (one morning, my stomach told me it wanted pancakes and maple syrup with grilled halloumi and baked beans...and Cafe 338 complied). Also, there are free refills on filter coffee (!!!), which never happens in London...cherish it.
This has been quite a strange list of reasons why I love Cafe 338, but hopefully it convinces people to go. You really should go, it's pretty great.
As a tourist staying a small hotel in Bethnal Green, I stumbled upon this cafe and I have to stay it is some of the best breakfast I've ever had, anywhere!
There were plenty of options for an English breakfast, but I found myself having pancakes alternating with eggs, sausage, grilled tomato, etc. The freshly squeezed OJ was delicious and they provided random fruit with the pancakes! (One day it was watermelon, another day there were grapes!)
I returned to this place 3 out of the 4 mornings that I was in London and the service each day was pleasant and welcoming. The food was absolutely delicious each day to start my days off right and I don't think I spent more than 15£ for two any day. I highly recommend this place for English breakfast, I wish I could've tried their other food.
So cheap, so good. A proper greasy spoon. The coffee (included in every £5-£6 pancake breakfast) isn't great but the food makes up for it!
The place is very small, but it is a great value for its portion size. An inexpensive place to go have brunch with a few friends.
I like their willingness to substitute items on set menu plates.
It's extremely busy on weekends between 11-2, so be ready to queue.
Great value, greasy spoon fry-ups... but with something additional: delicious freshly squeezed OJ, relatively friendly service, good vegetarian options, plus pancakes, omelets, and some other more diverse breakfast items.
Basically, large plates of breakfast food, mostly for under £5. Long queues on the weekends, but fine on weekdays. Cash only, but theres a cashpoint across the street.
If you live in the neighborhood, do it, but don't trek across town. Buy definitely get some orange juice.
This place is my favorite breakfast food restaurant in London. You can get a huge English breakfast for a very cheap price and it fills you up. i came here, not knowing what to expect and left with a huge tummy full of delicious food. I have taken so many of my friends here and they all agree to it being some of the best food they've had.
They also have a new lunch menu they just started, I haven't tried it yet, but it wouldn't surprise me if it was absolutely amazing.
I highly suggest this to anyone who's hungry and wants a ridiculously amazing breakfast (English style ;])
I am disappointed, which is sad given I only heard good things from here. But the fact is that I went in very hungry and looking forward to a good meal and left feeling like I would have rather gone to Nando's.
Issue - I had to travel by bus to get here. It's a local joint and by no means a travel-to-destination. And I was hungry!
Issue - We came with a party of 8. If you have a party of more than 4, just don't go. In an attempt to get all plates out to two separate tables at once, we waited for about a 45 minutes to get our food. This does not bode well for a hungry man.
Issue - I made the mistake of ordering the Mega Breakfast and assumed that it came with beans, as any English breakie should. It did not. My fault? Yeah I guess so, but that doesn't mean it deserves another star.
Issue - The breakfast I had was good, but it was not fantastic by any means. A fine price, but I know of other places that are cheaper of the same quality and size.
It has been judged and really an unfortunate thing in my eyes. When inevitably I am dragged back here despite my best grumblings, hopefully the experience and cirumstances provide for a better experience and I can give it a better rating.
And one that includes beans.
I ate my body weight's worth of breakfast here. No judging looks, only thumbs up (s?).
Love love love. Love.
I'm guessing it was so packed due to Pellici's being closed, but we didn't have to wait long as service was so fast. Friendly people in cramped quarters, your typical cafe buzzing on a Sunday midday. Great prices and good portions...some of the most flavorful bubble and squeak I've had in London as well. Chomp chomp chomp.
Gotta scream that in at the end.
Sure if you like eating canned food go for it.
Nothing tastes like the food it is here. Eggs are from caged birds, beans from a can, mushrooms from a can... People like it for the price because they're broke or they don't have a clue what good food tastes like.
reasonable prices. limited delicious menu. fantastic ambiance and service.
It was one of the first typical english cafè that i tried when i came for the first time in London and it's definitely the best!They are really kind everytime,sometimes you have to wait a little bit because often it's quite full,but for the rest the food is great and the price good!I recommend it to everybody!!!!
Even when I ordered an Americano and got a latte, and then proceeded to get two more coffee's that I didn't order and then got bacon on my Bethnal green veggie breakfast I can't complain. Sitting outside on a rainy, cold summers day with good company, and full belly, and at 7 pounds it is pretty good. The portions are MASSIVE though.
Definitely my favourite East London greasy spoon. Cracking value as well given the Olympic sized breakfasts!
Okay, I have been meaning to update my views on this for the last few weeks, as I have since been back and had a very different experience. Just have not had a moment to write this (sorry for the delay Cafe 338!)
If you have read the previous review you may (rightly) wonder why I ever returned? Basically, I was coming home from a party with some friends and on getting off the tube at Bethnal Green, everyone started realise they were hungry. I suggested we go to Little Georgia, but this was vetoed due to being too far away. Plus, my girlfriend is a major fan of 338. I explained to her that it was impossible for me to go back due to the previous experience and the review. Reader, my protestations fell on deaf ears. It was recommended that I go in disguised.
I was drunk enough to think this a good idea.
It was not.
The disguise consisted of a Chinaman's hat (conical Asian hat), which covered my face about a third of the way down. This would have been a great disguise if I wasn't 6ft 3in tall. But I am and the woman who runs the cafe (my nemesis from the previous review), is very small and so could see my face right away. This was confirmed when she said, "I know you, you are the man who wrote the review".
It was not possible to deny this.
We exchanged a few words about each other previous attitudes. I focused on her rudeness. She on my drunkenness (which, I for some strange reason, forgot to mention in the previous review). After a moment or two of this we decided to become friends and even had a hug. I then spoke to the rest of the staff and then was served a giant breakfast with mountains of extra baked beans and hash browns.
Dear reader, it was a moment that allows me to believe in the possibility of world peace.
We are all human. Me, you, the entire staff of Cafe 338. We all make mistakes and we all let our moods get the better of us.
But what we don't all do, is make breakfasts as amazing as the one I had a Cafe 338 on Bethnal Green Road on Saturday October 1st at approximately 6am.
This was a breakfast that i will never forget.
A 5 star traditional caff. 10 different breakfasts, proper sized portions, tea included. Packed to the rafters when I visited and be prepared to share your table. This is how an East End caff is meant to be.
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