Monday, February 26, 2018

Liverpool sights and vegan eating from The Egg Cafe

Last week I had a trip of three firsts. It was my first overnight work trip in the UK (my role doesn't usually involve much travelling, but for various reasons will have a bit more this year); my first overnight stay away from Mini Bite; and my first visit to Liverpool.

Liverpool docks

At 18 months, I know many parents will have left their children overnight before. However, it felt like an enormous milestone for our household. I confess to feeling some excitement as well as apprehension - the excitement mostly centering around uninterrupted, extended sleep. I was rewarded with exactly that: 10 hours of blissful sleep after a prior hour reading in bed. Poor Mr Bite had the opposite scenario at home, with Mini Bite being awake from 1-3am and then starting her day at 5am. It is probably for the best I have no more overnight travel planned.

World Museum, Liverpool

It is impressive that I could make the trip with just one night away. I needed to be in Liverpool at 9.30am on the Thursday, and could achieve that with leaving home at 5.30am. If I lived closer to north London it would have been an even shorter journey, as the train from London Euston to Liverpool is just over 2 hours. It is a fast journey for over 200 miles. I appreciated the opportunity to read and work in peace on the train.

I was done with work by 5.30pm on Thursday and toured the waterfront docks and central shopping areas before darkness fell. Like so many northern cities, Liverpool is well and truly regenerated and I found the city attractive with a mix of original and modern buildings. The Albert dock area was lit up with fairy lights and there were museums at every turn, inviting me back for a proper visit. The World Museum, pictured above, is hosting China's Terracotta Warriors so I was sorry not to see those this time.

Albert Dock

I was also impressed with the shopping set-up. I wasn't in Liverpool to shop, but wanted to buy Mr Bite chocolates and Mini Bite some small gift, and the central Waterstone's was well equipped for the latter. The children's section had an excellent reading area and cubby, which would be perfect if you were browsing with children in tow.

With a rare night to myself, you can imagine the choice over dinner was difficult. I knew I wouldn't be eating out anywhere - my vision of a perfect night included an early change into pyjamas and reading in bed - but there were plenty of options for take away. I opted for The Egg Cafe, which does not have a great name if you are vegan, but does have many appealing vegan options.

The Egg Cafe is one of those traditional vegetarian restaurants that has resisted calls to trendiness and 'superfood' labels. It has one of the least assuming entrances I've come across, with a staircase into an old building that is painted but otherwise semi-decrepit. I climbed multiple floors, seeing no one, only to reach a closed door at the top. It invited me to push open, but nevertheless - welcoming it wasn't.

The Egg Cafe stairwell

Fortunately, once inside, the cafe is appealing. It is surprisingly large, with separate seating areas, and combined wooden floors and tables with exposed lights and interesting artwork. Roughly half the tables were full, which seemed impressive for a weeknight before 7pm.

Online, The Egg Cafe menu boasts a vegan tandoori mushroom dish and a vegan spicy burger. I'd planned to try one of those but instead opted for the special of sticky ginger tofu with rice. It came with a side of salad and the meal was incredibly generous for £7.00 - the side of salad was almost a meal in and of itself. I received two take away containers to hold the food! The tofu and rice mix was delicious, and the salad featured tomatoes, cucumber, chick peas, pesto pasta and olives.

As you'll appreciate, it took a little while to work through the meal. I took my time back at my hotel, reading as I went, but really didn't need dessert. However, at the time of ordering I didn't know I'd be granted such generous helpings. I thus purchased a slice of 'chocolate crunch cake', which I would have called chocolate tiffin. Whatever you call it, it was a generous slice of chocolate mixed with biscuit pieces. For £1.95, it also put London prices to shame.

 It might not name itself for vegans, but The Egg Cafe definitely caters well to them and I recommend it to you should you find yourself in Liverpool. For my part, I hope to make it back to explore the city more fully another time. In the interim, I am soaking up home routines and enjoying being reunited with Mr and Mini Bite.

The Egg Cafe is located at 16-18 Newington, Liverpool. Details and menus are available at

Have you visited anywhere new lately?


  1. That's a lot of firsts for one night!
    "10 hours of blissful sleep after a prior hour reading in bed."
    Amazing! Much needed I imagine. Poor Mr. Bite...
    The dock is so pretty with the twinkly lights.
    And your supper and dessert looks so good! That salad - wow, what a good looking side salad. Usually they are so small and boring and unappealing. If I ever find my way to Liverpool, I will check out the Egg Cafe.

    1. I know what you mean about side salads - usually they don't warrant any attention! This was a side salad with a difference :)

  2. Oh poor mini bite, and mr bite :)
    you bring back memories for me. I have been to Liverpool twice, the first time when I was a student, I went with friends to the Merseyside Maritime Museum and the second time when I worked in Scotland, but had a work meeting in Liverpool. I got there the day before and was able to see parts of it. I did not get to eat at the Egg, but my husband has and yes, your right - he remembers it as being a traditional vegetarian eatery and sometimes that is what we want. Your portions are generous.

    The dock does look magical with the lighting. I'd love to see China's Terracotta Warriors, but don't think I will.

    1. Sometimes traditional places are the best. I'm glad your husband got to experience The Egg and you enjoyed your own time in Liverpool briefly in the past.

  3. Liverpool is a place I would love to visit but never have - it is a place of such rich history and culture that it would be fascinating. Glad you enjoyed it - I am sure you enjoyed a quiet night with no interrupted sleep and being able to walk around at leisure. I like the sound of the egg cafe - old school vegetarian can be great comfort food - and even the old school vegetarian places seem to have modernised quite a bit these days. I bet I know who got up to mini bite the night you got home though :-)

    1. Ha, indeed, I have been making up for my absence ever since ;) It was worth it for the night of peace though!

  4. I'm always well disposed to a restaurant based on its portion sizes, and the Egg looked like it certainly delivered. The trip sounds like it was well worth it from a food and relaxation point of view - it's great that you got to see some of the city and enjoy a good sleep too. 10 hours asleep is 10 hours well spent!

  5. I liked Liverpool - it has been a long time since I have been there. I was all for visiting the touristy Beatles sites. The Egg Café seems daunting to enter, but you certainly got your money's worth. Howe lovely to have that wee break to yourself.

    1. I'll have to go back for the Beatles sites as they appeal but didn't get to be fit in this time around.


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