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At the shrine of Olympic capitalism we found ourselves in need of coffee and light refreshment.  After investigating the cookery department of John Lewis and having fun testing out all the kitchen implements we didn't have a clue about, it was time for repose.  

Balans is a restaurant/(posing) bar.  Its menu is mainly British but it happily puts Chicken Gyoza right next to Quesadillas and seems content with this.  The interior is straight out of the seventies, dark wood, brown, orange and white.  The booths for four are actually only for two normal sized people, and if there is a way to get into them gracefully, I haven't found it.  Getting out involved a hinge like movement around the mid torso and a bit of shoving.

Last time we visited, I had the Scallops and Bacon.  Worryingly the Scallops were a tad raw in the middle.  I returned them after eating about half and received complimentary coffee as I was not keen on a second plateful.  I should have complained instantly but, British, stoicism, reticence...many things prevented me.

This time however we were after something very light and seeing Crumpets and jam for £2.25 on the menu,[livejournal.com profile] major_clanger promptly plumped for them.  I was about to order something else but it appears that for that paltry sum one receives three crumpets, 3 jams and Nutella. Barely had we ordered, than the coffees and the piping hot crumpets turned up.  The jams were Tiptree; apricot, marmalade and strawberry and the butter was the rather nice French Lescure unsalted butter.  The total bill was under eight pounds including service.

Slightly put off by our waitress sitting down at the table to our immediate left to tuck into a plate of club sandwich and chips which was physically bigger than her head (and she had a lot of weave up top to start with).

Overall 4/5




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