I have never been one to feel peckish in the morning, so when brunch menus rose in popularity, you’re right in thinking I got behind them from the outset.
When I think of brunch, I automatically envisage vibrant, nutritious and mouth-watering dishes that have you eager to dive right into them – after capturing that quintessential image for social media first, of course.
Although I have tried my hand at recreating a number of brunch dishes in the past, I’m yet to perfect some – yes, even a classic poached egg still proves a challenge for me. With that said, I often aim on heading out for the late-morning meal instead.
There are multiple food and drink businesses in Aberdeen and Aberdeenshire that have been recommended to me for their brunch offering, one being Lettuce Eat Healthy, based on Queen Street in Peterhead.
The name doesn’t quite ring a bell? Well, I would urge you to check out the business’ social media pages – Facebook and Instagram – and you’ll be eager to venture to the venue in a heartbeat. The pictures speak for themselves.
Heading in on a sunny Sunday with my boyfriend, this was his second brunch outing to date. After the first, at Cafe Ahoy in Aberdeen, turned out to be one of his favourite foodie experiences in the north-east, the bar was high.
On entering, Lettuce Eat Healthy appears to be a sandwich shop alone, boasting an extensive counter filled with sweet and savoury goodies.
But after making your way through a narrow corridor, you’re met with a spectacle of hanging flowers, quirky ornaments and vibrant decor. It was as if we had transported from Peterhead to a brunch hot spot in the centre of London. I was in awe.
Despite not booking – although I would highly recommend doing so to be on the safe side – we were lucky that there were a number of empty tables on the go. We took our seats and began scanning the menus.
Neither of us had ever taken so long to place an order. There was so much to choose from, including specials that are changed on a daily basis.
The pair of us were handed a glass of crisp, fresh orange juice each while awaiting our food. It was delightfully refreshing. I had to stop myself from finishing it off before the dishes had even arrived, which were a sight to see, might I add.
My boyfriend selected the Lettuce Eat Healthy club sandwich, which comprised not one or two, but three layers – yes, you read that right.
Wedged between the three slices of brown bread were hefty slices of succulent chicken breast that had been smothered in a creamy sriracha mayo. The slight sweetness of the sauce hit the taste buds instantly, quickly followed by a tanginess that danced on the tongue.
Crispy and salty, there were also several strips of maple bacon in the mix, as well as a generous helping of iceberg lettuce, sliced tomato and ever so slightly sweet black pudding.
The sandwich was packed to the brim, but that wasn’t the only item on the menu for my brunch partner. He also opted for a caesar salad, which featured nothing but juicy and fresh ingredients.
These included strips of chicken breast and bacon, crispy mixed lettuce, cherry tomatoes, homemade croutons, a sprinkle of parmesan cheese and a caesar dressing, made in-house at the cafe. Not only did it look the part, but it tasted the part too.
There was a sweetness from the cherry tomatoes, crunchiness from the croutons, nuttiness from the parmesan and richness from the dressing. The variety of flavours and textures blended together infinitely.
As for my dish, I opted for the eggs benedict. To say my face lit up as soon as the plate arrived would be an understatement. It demanded my attention.
It comprised two toasted English muffins, topped with crispy bacon, soft poached eggs and a hollandaise sauce.
The muffins themselves were neither too crisp nor too soft, balancing superbly with the creamy texture of the sauce. And as for the bacon, it boasted a superb crunch. I went on to slice into the yolk of my egg which, unsurprisingly, was perfectly cooked.
After our dishes had been devoured, we hummed and hayed over the idea of requesting a sweet – given how much we were enjoying our experience so far.
Three tempting pancake options were up for grabs, including the Only In America, Berries Galore and Banoffee Surprise. I’m a sucker for banoffee pie, so I took it upon myself to make the final call.
Two deliciously hot pancakes were topped with chopped bananas, a heavenly combination of chocolate and toffee sauce, and whipped cream.
We couldn’t wait to sink our forks into the treat, which was soft, gooey and sweet. What a fantastic way to end a faultless meal.
Lettuce Eat Healthy offers fantastic value for money, to say the least, especially after taking into consideration the luxurious interior you get to soak in and admire when enjoying your meal.
But while both the food and interiors were second to none, a spotlight should also be set firmly on the highly cooperative and hospitable team, as well. Multiple servers were by our side on the day, each one just as delightful as the last.
If you’re on the hunt for a cafe that offers fabulous dishes with an atmosphere and team to match, then I cannot recommend a visit to Lettuce Eat Healthy enough. It’s now one of my favourite eateries based in the north-east, that’s for sure.
Address: 90 Queen Street, Peterhead, AB42 1TT
T: 01779 238060