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The Best Cities for Breakfast

Published 30 March 2016

Round the World Experts blogger Helen Winter

Helen Winter

Oh breakfast. You’re there to welcome us when we begrudgingly give into our alarms, to fill us with energy for the day, and to shamelessly Instagram from infinite angles. This is definitely not a blog to read (or write for that matter) on an empty stomach. These restaurants don’t just serve breakfast, they are breakfast.

Austin, Texas

Tex-Mex in the morning? Well yes, if you’re in Austin, Texas you can’t start the day without sampling the celebrated breakfast taco. The order of the day is scrambled eggs, sausage, bacon, chorizo and a sprinkle of hot sauce to wake you up, all wrapped in a soft tortilla. We’d recommend having it with a coffee instead of a margarita though. For a selection of organic and vegetarian tacos grab a seat at Maudie’s Tex Mex. Where to go: Maudie’s Tex Mex, 2608 W 7th St, Austin

Sydney, Australia

Contrary to popular belief, there’s more on the Australian breakfast menu than vegemite on toast. In most cafés you may be tempted to try a twist on an English classic, the Full Aussie Breakfast, which includes the usual suspects; eggs, toast, sausage, bacon and mushrooms, although depending on where you eat, these will be locally sourced. Another tempting breakfast for the sweet-toothers amongst us is the ricotta hot cakes, served with banana and honeycomb butter and best sampled at a Sydney favourite, Bills. Where to go: Bills, 433 Liverpool St, Darlinghurst

Hong Kong, China

In Hong Kong you may be overwhelmed with international cuisine, from patisseries, New York bagels and even an English fry up, but to keep it traditional try breaking your morning fast with a plate of dim sum. Most dim sum restaurants open around 7am, so if you’re up early doors it's likely you'll be bumping shoulders with tired office workers as you decide which selection of steamed parcels you fancy. For a truly authentic experience head to Lin Heung Teahouse, which has been serving dim sum and pots of tea for decades. Where to eat: Lin Heung Teahouse, 160-164 Wellington Street, Central

Cape Town, South Africa

Cape Town has it covered when it comes to cafés, no matter what time of day it is. With eateries that look like they’ve been transported from Los Angeles, and bakeries that could easily disguise themselves on the streets of Europe, it’s no wonder that breakfast is serious business here. To try unique flavours, grab a freshly squeezed juice at the Hemelhuijs and order the french toast served with home-made prickly-pear syrup. If you’re up earlier than desired, alert your senses with an aromatic Tribe organic coffee and gourmet BLT croissant at the Empire Café which overlooks the sea. Where to go: Hemelhuijs, 71 Waterkant Street, Cape Town  and Empire Cafe, 11 York Road, Muizenberg

Bangkok, Thailand

In Thailand there’s only one place to head for your morning jump start – the food markets. To immerse yourself into Thai culture, pick a food stall (the ones with the longest queues are usually the best) and order a hot bowl of congee rice. With a similar texture to porridge, you may be thrown off by the addition of a cracked egg, ginger, cilantro and meat balls – usually pork – but that’s the joy of travelling. If that doesn’t take your fancy,  try patongo, a salty doughnut which is dipped into sang kaya, a sweet custard. Where to go: Khlong Toei Market, Soi Rong Ngan Yasup, Khlong Toei

Tokyo, Japan

Tokyo is a city whose modernisation and technological revelations both intrigue and bewilder the world. Fortunately, when it comes to breakfast, this Japanese hub has kept things simple. Forget all about your traditional shrove Tuesday pancakes, we’re talking stacked, buttermilk, fluffy pancakes with a delectable twist of toppings and flavours. Head to Butter to try – you guessed it – the butteriest (is that a word?) pancakes you’ve ever tasted. For a pancake as equally as ‘treat-worthy’ try Voi Voi for it’s infamous Four Cheese Fondue pancake. Where to go: Butter, Urban Dock LaLaPort Ship II 1F, 2-4-9 Toyosu, Koto-ku and Voi Voi 1-35-15 Sangenjaya, Setagaya-ku


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