FINALLY – feel good fast food here in Shoreditch! Opening on the 16th March, founder and entrepreneur, Andrew Bredon, has spent a lifetime chasing the sun and surf in Australia, Mexico, Costa Rica, the Caribbean and California. After a recent stint of living in LA and desperate to bring back some of that Californian sunshine to another London winter, the idea for Bel-Air was born – a way to brighten London’s fast food scene, and bring a slice of healthy LA living back home.
Open for breakfast and lunch, Bel-Air is all about sunshine. The menu, developed by former Lardo, Zucca and St John chef Damian Currie, takes its inspiration from California – light, healthy dishes packed with flavour whilst using only the best, natural ingredients and fresh produce, focusing also on being low in salt, low carb and free of refined sugar.
Early birds can start the day from 8am with breakfast shots – including the ‘Fresh Prince’ made with fennel, mint, cucumber and ginger to bring zing to your morning. There will also be a ‘Build your own Breakfast’, including buckwheat porridge, homemade pineapple and coconut granola, or jumbo rolled oats as a base – topped with homemade coconut yoghurt, almond milk or greek yoghurt, add delicious compotes, super-food powders such as spirulina, maca, and baobab, a squeeze of agave syrup, nuts, chia seeds, toasted coconut and cacao nibs.
Open breakfast sandwiches will be a signature, homemade San Francisco style sourdough or wheat-free caraway and chia seed black bread topped with options for a healthy start to the day – try avocado, radish and raw beetroot mixed with cumin, sumac and fresh lemon juice. For protein seekers, there will be three types of free-range breakfast eggs; Healthy Hangover Hash with chorizo, grated courgette, smoked paprika, Shakshuka and the Muscle Beach, a minute steak served with a poached egg and smoky spinach and sweet potato hash.
Come midday, the ‘Hot Stuff’ offering includes crab cakes packed with fresh ginger, chilli and coriander with shaved crunchy pak choi and pickled daikon salad or ancho chilli braised beef with pink pickled onions, guacamole, chipotle and shredded cabbage with coriander and lime. During lunch hours the marble topped counter is home to a range of signature salads served in an eclectic mix of oversized bowls – mix and match your salad box, choices include a broccoli and almond slaw, raw root vegetable with apple vinegar and green herbs or roasted aubergine with tahini yoghurt, dukkah and ripped mint leaves and sliced black chilies. Supersize your afternoon by adding a favourite protein – poached salmon, chicken breast, root vegetable frittata or peppered smoked mackerel.
During the winter months there will be restorative soups such as an Asian broth with shredded chicken ginger, coriander, lime, bean sprouts & shaved bean sprouts. To finish sweets such as caramelised pineapple, oat & flaxseed cookies or coconut, lime and cardamom macarons will be available.
Fridges will be stocked with Cocoface coconut water, along with sparkling and cold-pressed juices – including Bel-Air’s own rosemary infused cold-pressed orange juice spritzer. Local micro-roaster, Ozone will supply the coffee and there will be herbal teas, such as antioxidant-rich Matcha from Japan.
‘LA is one of the coolest places on the planet – a fantastic melting pot of cultures and a wonderful city of contrasts – mid-century modern architecture, vast concrete jungles, palm lined streets, the sea, celebrity and ridiculous luxury sit comfortably with ground breaking food trucks and farmers markets filled with wonderful produce. California has got it so right – well-sourced beautiful ingredients, bold flavours, all fused with that ever present sunshine’ says Andrew.
Technology will also come into play with a brand new take-away app using iBeacon technology. The app will allow customers to order breakfast or lunch directly from their smart phone. Avoiding the queue, their orders will be available for swift collection from the Bel-Air concierge (look for the white concierge cap) where the iBeacon technology will automatically recognise them as they arrive – a little lunchtime luxury.
Cheaper than a flight to LA and with all the cool of Shoreditch – we can’t wait to welcome Bel Air to the neighbourhood!