Barley & Beans Cafe& Bar Liverpool

Barley & Beans is a relaxed and informal place in a quieter area of town.  A stone’s throw from Moorfields and the Ship & Mitre (a mighty fine real ale pub), the menu boasts one of the most authoritative breakfast/brunch selections in the city.  As the proprietor states, breakfast should not be wasted, confined to the am.  Afternoon breakfast should not be the sole domain of the bleary-eyed, hungover student.  If you want Eggs Benedict at 8pm, just go for it.

Cocktails Barley & BeansOf course, if you’re eating breakfast whenever the hell you feel like it, then surely you are also allowed to chase it down with a cocktail.  The Bloody Mary at Barley & Beans is a sight to behold, and with an emphasis on quality ingredients across the board, there was not a bottle of Smirnoff in sight.  There is plenty of heat, not least from the freshly-sliced horseradish, but then this drink should be a sensory experience.  Just be cautious about pairing it with a jalapeno pizza.

We ordered a pizza and a burger, being unprepared for the possibility of evening breakfast, but then this will not be our only visit to Barley & Beans, just the first of many.  The pizza is one of the finer dough bases you will come across, tasty and light with a good crunch, while the burger was quite obviously high quality meat.  In fact, owner/manager Nick was able to tell me that all of their meat comes from an independent producer who he is on first name terms with; this particular butcher was recently included in Bitten magazine’s 50 Best in the North West.

Barley & Beans Collage

The initial idea in Barley & Beans was to create a menu that did not require any deep-frying.  Obviously this became difficult, as everybody loves a few chips, but an emphasis on healthy yet tasty foods has had one happy accident.  In an attempt to get away from the often soggy and always fat-heavy battered onion rings, B&B does them in Japanese Panko Breadcrumbs.  This is a taste sensation, elevating an oft-overlooked burger dressing into the culinary star attraction of the evening.

We finished the evening with an Espresso Martini topped with Kahlua, a very good Metropolitan and a pleasant conversation about the next stage in the development of this great little business: an unusual line in evening entertainment is soon to feature as another string their bow, but for now, we can finish by giving Barley & Beans the best of all recommendations – we will be returning.

Barley & Beans; 17 Hatton Garden, L3. For More Info Visit Their Facebook Page.

Dirk Gently