Here’s a rundown of the best brunch spots in Exeter to cure those Freshers’ Week hangovers
Here to save your bacon (and eggs, toast, beans, sausage and mushroom)
All hail the Gods of Brunch (Nigella Lawson and Insta influencers). Hungover? Brunch. Birthday? Brunch. Hungry? Brunch. Date? Brunch. Life falling apart and trying to avoid deadlines? Brunch. You get the idea.
Brunch is basically sacred in Exeter, combining the element of the boujee whilst technically being a money saver as you’re having two meals in one – ideal. Whether you’re an incoming fresher, an uncultured second year, or a Covid casualty third year, we’ve got you covered with a round up of the best brunch spots in Exeter.
Here’s a definitive guide to the best brunch spots in Exeter:
1. Pura Vida
Ah, the classic Pura Vida: located on Wells St, it brings you the dream of having endlessly cool surfer chick vibes without having to go anywhere near the sea, or even very far away from the library. Student friendly, budget friendly and serving up everything from a full English to pancakes and smoothie bowls, this one is a firm fave amongst Exeter students (so popular they’ve opened a sister cafe on Old Tiv called ‘Sunset Society’ – not only for brunch but pizza and booze on Thursdays and Fridays!) The only downside to this ideally located favourite, is that you are unlikely to go in without seeing someone you know – not always ideal when you’re trying to forget last night’s antics.
2. Boston Tea Party
BTP has the vibes: Sunday morning energy all week round with their quirky art-work, white-washed walls and real-life trees inside – and of course some of the best brunch you can find. Whatever your dietary requirements, I can confirm they do an EGG-cellent (sorry I had to), selection of veggie and vegan breakfasts – their vegan breakfast did the impossible: convinced me scrambled tofu can actually be nice – *drools in plant based*. It has also been said by a few that they do the best Cappuccino in town.
This option is for the bold. Brody’s all you can eat breakfast buffet, including Full English, pancakes, waffles and more is a brunch-lover’s heaven, and the student dream of getting your money’s worth. However, be warned: it has become the foe of many a hungover student who thinks three waffles and four helpings of bacon and eggs will ‘sort them out’, but ultimately proving the opposite. If you’re feeling slightly delicate, it might be wise to give this one a miss until you’re recovered from the night before.
If you need a long walk to cure your hangxiety, Mango’s is the option for you. Idyllically situated on the Quay, Mango’s is perfectly embedded into the Quay’s wall, with a welcoming cave-like interior that entices you with the promise of kick-ass coffee. If you think the views are Insta-worthy, the food takes it to a new level – believe me it’s the prettiest avo on toast I’ve seen in a long time. And, if you love Mango’s in the daytime, it is 100 per cent acceptable to come back the same day and start making your way through their cocktail menu.
5. Coffery & Co
In the middle of town you’ll find Coffery & Co, a coffee shop that will fulfil all your indie latte art dreams. If you haven’t lost your voice screaming to Mr Brightside at the end of a Cheesies, then you can also bag yourself a free coffee by performing a song at their dedicated open-mic set up. They also have student discount, which makes their smoothies and pancakes that much sweeter.
From refined to, well, slightly less refined, we have the classic Wetherspoons: our beloved Impy. You may have thrown up in their loo the night before or got heat stroke after drinking in the ultimate beer garden for 10 hours – but you know it will provide the hangover cure you need. Whether you’re opting for a classic full English or jumping straight back into the pints, (if you’re someone who swears by hair of the dog, teach me your ways), Impy always has your back, no matter what.
7. Sacred Grounds
One of the more refined options on this list of the best brunch spots in Exeter, Sacred Grounds is a vegan cafe situated in McCoys Arcade at the bottom of Fore Street. Serving an incredible selection of seasonal vegan dishes, as well as twists on classic brunch options like eggs on toast, it’s definitely worth the trek, despite being filled with those enlightened gap yar girls you often find burning incense to get rid of the bad energy in halls. Not only will you want to spend all your student loan on food at Sacred Grounds, but it is surrounded by some of the best independents: Real McCoys Vintage clothing and BookBag are both next door, providing the best in second-hand clothing and newest book releases – charity shop girlies, you have been warned.
8. Eat on the Green
Picture the scene: it’s only the second day of Freshers’, your parents are still in Exeter apparently treating your move to uni as a holiday, and they want to treat you to brunch the next morning. You’re desperately holding in the tequila and Jägerbomb combo that is threatening to rise, craving fresh air, and surreptitiously trying to hide the *ahem* marks on your neck as your parents ask if you had fun last night. Eat on the Green is the perfect antidote: you can tuck into their cracking brunches, (including some of the best Eggs Benedict I’ve ever had), and be distracted from the lingering nausea, and all parental scrutiny by the delightful views of the Cathedral.
9. The Undergrad
If you want to have a sob over the fact you don’t live in the newly furnished, en-suite in every room, bougie accommodation that is The Depot whilst sipping your coffee, then head to its very own cafe: The Undergrad. Serving breakfast till 3:30 pm, you don’t need to roll out of bed early to get the best of their pastries, pancakes and very own Undergrad breakfast (check out their Insta for mouth-watering proof). With fairy lights, enough plants to make Attenborough smile and green juice (if you’re the sort of person who actually enjoys exercise) The Undergrad has the perfect aesthetics for all pictures as well as perfect study vibes.
This is kind of the Pura Vida of the Quay. Located just along from Mango’s, it has ACTUAL surf boards in its cave-like interiors and offers yoga sessions. If you want to feel like the ultimate beach bum whilst chomping a bagel or smashed avo before the reality of the library and deadlines come screaming back to you, then this is the place to go.
11. Chando’s Deli
I almost didn’t include this one in this guide to best Exeter spots because firstly I love it and want it to stay a secret and secondly because it’s more of a lunch than a brunch. But the fresh sourdough toasties are too good not to share. Located in town – a stone’s throw from Zara, it’s a tucked away heaven of homemade deliciousness. It’s perhaps a little less popular with students as they’re open from eight am and it’s a first come, first serve basis, so when they sell out, they’re gone – meaning if you get there at four (half an hour before they close), you’ll probably only be able to get a coffee and a few crumbs – but to be fair it’s worth it for their oat latte.