Reviewed: breakfast at the Black Iron Social

Niche Magazine's Susie the Foodie enjoys a Full English at the Black Iron Social.

Black Iron Social, Gresham Aparthotel, Market Street, Leicester LE1 6DP

Hotel breakfasts are one of the great pleasures of life – and now you can enjoy one at Leicester’s latest aparthotel, even if you’re not indulging in an overnight stay.


Get yourself over to the Gresham Hotel, which has breathed life into the iconic Victorian building that formerly housed Fenwick’s department store, and in the ground floor lobby you’ll find The Black Iron Social.


Acting as the hotel’s central bar and 80-cover restaurant, but run independently by the owners of the excellent Black Iron restaurant at Winstanley House, Black Iron Social is open to members of the public as well as hotel guests, seven days a week.


I couldn’t resist the temptation of a Full English from the brunch menu, so popped along there one morning to start the day in style.


Enter through the front doors of this impressively redeveloped building and you’re straight into the Black Iron Social – the ambience is a tasteful blend of modern and classic styles which complements the grand old building well.


There’s an abundance of pot plants which give a lush, exotic feeling and add to the sense of occasion – you certainly sense that you’re in for a real treat here.


The thing is, despite the upmarket air of the whole establishment, the prices are very reasonable.


Both myself and my partner went for the Full English – and it lived up to its billing when it arrived on our plates.


A couple of meaty Onley oak sausages were accompanied by streaky bacon, mushrooms, tomato, two hash browns, a poached egg and wholemeal toast. They were all delicious, but the star of the show for both of use was the crispy black pudding fried in breadcrumbs – talk about naughty but nice!


If you don’t have the time to to indulge in a full sit-down blow-out, you can also get a Grab & Go Breakfast, which you can order in advance and pick up on your way to work/meeting/whatever.


Six quid for a selection that includes croissant monsieur, or a bacon or sausage roll, with a hot drink thrown in for £2 sounded like decent value to us for food of this quality.


But I’d definitely recommend treating yourself and a loved one to the full sit-down at the Black Iron Social at least once for the experience alone – after our Full English, we emerged onto the streets of Leicester, brim-full of enthusiasm (as well as delicious food) and ready to take on anything the day could throw at us…

Written by Susan Holmes.

Susan is Head of Design Studio at Cross Productions, working on titles such as Niche Magazine and She Inspires. She is also known as Susie the Foodie, Niche Magazine's resident food reviewer.