Brunch at 90° Degree MELT, Stepney Green

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This weekend we took an adventure to far-East London, venturing into the previously unexplored world of Stepney Green. Located a short walk from the better known Bethnal Green with Aldgate and Liverpool Street really not that far away, Stepney Green is a really diverse community. Shops range from little corner establishments to famous brands and even a few London favourites like Foxcroft & Ginger. Set a little further towards Mile End sits 90° Degree MELT - a truly unique cafe/restaurant specialising in American melts. 
Tiled walls, dark tables and white chairs create a distinctly contemporary cool vibe not too dissimilar to Bourne & Hollingsworth, so get your Instagram at the ready. Up at the open kitchen counter, the Irish-Scottish Head Chef whips up comforting creations that are best enjoyed while basking in the sunshine streaming through the massive windows.
The vision of former financier Nidhi, 90° Degree MELT takes American classics and gives them a sprinkling of spice from India and the contemporary presentation of London's best brunch spots. Due to this Indian influence, all dishes are vegetarian, many are vegan and a number are also gluten free. The free-from market, in all its guises, is a growing one and 90° Degree MELT easily caters to their every whim. 

When approaching the brunch menu, things look pretty classically American with fried grilled cheese balls; mini breakfast melts; and potato wedges with dip all featuring. It's when the food arrives that the Indian theme takes over with zingy toppings including coriander chutney, raw onion for that distinct tang and utterly exquisite yet unexpected spicing. Think samosa seasoning laced into the heart of your grilled cheese and you'll be on the right path. 

We kicked proceedings off with those grilled cheese balls to share, which were surprisingly dark and topped with fresh red tomato, vibrant green chutney, and red onion - what a picture! Once inside, the gooey, oozing cheese revealed itself and made a delicious combination. Who knew!?
When it comes to mains, it's go big or go home. Turkish-inspired red or green shakshuka with tofu or eggs both feature alongside everyone's favourite smashed avocado toast. I went for my first ever tofu scramble, a vegan staple replacement for scrambled eggs. Served on gluten-free bread (not my favourite) the tofu was delicately spiced then topped with spicy red pesto, a sprinkling of salty feta and fresh coriander. The side serving of guacamole is perfectly nice but would have benefitted from more lime. The main event itself was an interesting mix of textures and flavours and unbelievable moreish. I felt completely satisfied and yet naughtily virtuous at the same time. Delicious!  
Alex opted for the huge jalapeno cornbread with salsa, fried eggs, peppery rocket, roasted peppers, yogurt, spicy chipotle sauce and guacamole. The length of the dish on the menu is a good indicator for its size, which for just £7.50 is a flippin' bargain. The balance of spice from the jalapeno, chipotle and rocket is balanced with cooling guac and fresh yoghurt which the soft fried eggs worked perfectly with the crumbly cornbread. This is vegetarian food at its best. 
Of course, we had to leave room for dessert! Nidhi talked us into devouring her delicious pancake stack topped with fresh berries, banana and mascarpone and a drizzle of sweet syrup. Topped with dried rose petals, this sweet yet not too sweet dessert was absolutely divine. I never opt for sweet brunches but this pancake stack absolutely changed my view on this, so thank you Nidhi! 
Overall, it might be a trek away but 90° Degree MELT is definitely worth journeying out East for. The unexpected flavour combinations, delicious menu of vegetarian fare and pretty setting makes for a most lovely brunch, whether you're an Instagram addict or not. What are you waiting for?

Thank you 90° Degree MELT for hosting this review. All opinions are my own. 



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