Address: Arlington Parade, Brixton Hill, Brixton, London SW2 1RH
Telephone: 020 7733 4810
- Monday to Saturday: 7am to 6pm
- Sunday: 8am to 4pm
Brixton isn’t all about the new places. There are plenty of relatively unassuming cafes and restaurants, where the newer Brixtonians will rarely be seen. These places will never be reviewed in Time Out or the Guardian and Vera Cruz is just one of those local places and it has been in our sights for a while. It’s in the small row of shops just at the beginning of Brixton Hill but isn’t looking its best at the moment covered with scaffolding that mean you can easily miss it. We went on the off chance but we guessed that it would have a long stretch at lunchtime – we were right.
The decor consists of red vinyl chairs and Formica tables, walls covered with plastic covered pictures of Madeira. The menu echoes these routes and is much too long to explain. We chose the special (creamy chicken curry and rice or bravas) and picado (pieces of tender sirloin steak cooked in garlic, gravy and red wine sauce).
As you can see from the photo, the chicken curry was creamy and lurid but had little flavour. A bit of salt might have helped. I was worried about the rice but it was good with separated grains.
The picado did not live up to its name – it was good exercise for the jaw and certainly took more than 15 chews. The sauce was ok although had a bit too much cornflour. The best bit one either plate was the chips. Homemade, golden brown and crispy and went well dipped in the gravy.
The really interesting part of this eatery was the choice of reading material on the bar – The Journal of Psychological Studies sounds pretty mainstream but not when it comes from the spiritist psychological society. This is a society that link philosophy and religion to the spirits with three main protagonists God, Jesus and someone called Alan Kardec. I might return just to flick through the pages but this time I will not roam from the egg and chips menu.
The meal for two cost was around £14 including one Coca Cola.