Play Hard

Why Café 21 is one of our new go-to spots for breakfast in York

From taking breakfast al fresco in the sun to refuelling for a day of retail therapy in a swish setting, start your day off the right way with breakfast at Café 21 York.

Written by Rachael Nichol
Published 08.07.2023

advertisement feature

One of England’s oldest and prettiest cities, York, really does have it all.

Where medieval architecture, towering cathedrals and iconic cobbled streets meet contemporary shopping, bars and dining. There’s a real sense of vibrancy we all know and love at this cultural hot spot. But before an afternoon admiring all that the charming city has to offer, why not start your day off the right way with a spot of breakfast in York? And we know just the place… Café 21 York.

Just a 20-minute walk from the train station you’ll find Café 21 York nestled on the second floor of Fenwick, in the heart of the Coppergate Shopping Centre. Serving a seasonal breakfast menu with fresh, bold flavours, this effortlessly stylish restaurant offers all our favourite, classic breakfast dishes as well as some with a modern twist.

But not only are the breakfast and brunch dishes beautiful; Café 21 brings ultra-contemporary, luxurious vibes to York and allows you to take your brunch alfresco seven days a week (weather permitting, of course)

Whether it be a leisurely morning before a day of retail therapy, wanting to line your stomach before day drinks in York’s quirky bars or fancy getting lost in the city’s rich history, Café 21 is the perfect base for exploring York.

Here’s why Café 21 York is our new go-to destination for breakfast in York…


Refinement, style and glamour, Café 21 is swankier than your average York café, but more welcoming than other York restaurants.

We’re talking ambient lighting, gold features, and open-plan design. Café 21 York exudes a welcoming elegance, with the marble bar and tabletops and the plush seating all lending themselves to an aura of indulgence. Expect warm, generous hospitality, skilful cooking and a good time feel.

We must admit that Café 21’s grab-and-go kiosk outside, Café 21 Express, is one of the things that set this breakfast place in York apart from the rest.

With all this glorious sunshine, Café 21 Express is the place to be this summer, whether it be to pick up a freshly baked pastry on your way to shop or sit back catching those rays whilst sipping on a refreshing summer smoothie watching the world go by.

With fabulous fresh foliage planted around the terrace alongside beautiful flower planters and contemporary seating areas, Café 21 Express is a real hidden gem for relaxing over a spot of brunch.


Let’s move on to what all of us foodies want to hear about – the breakfast menu.

From traditional brunch favourites to some options with a contemporary twist, Michelin Star chef Terry Laybourne has carefully curated this classic breakfast menu that satisfies all tastes. Café 21’s cooking is big on flavour and short on fuss. We’re talking about a style which embraces the seasons and where the ingredients are at the heart of every dish.

How do you like your eggs in the morning? Well, Café 21 York’s breakfast dishes use St. Ewe Free Range Eggs that are famed for their depth of flavour and vibrant yolks.

So, whether you want to go classic with an Eggs Benedict, fancy spicing things up with Poached Eggs, Crushed Avocado, Lime and Chilli on Multigrain Toast or pick a healthier option with Scrambled Eggs and Smoked Salmon, we can guarantee you’ll really taste the difference.

Or, if you want something traditional for breakfast, tuck into a Crispy Bacon or Cumberland Sausage Bap, a Toast Basket with all our favourite spreads or Organic Granola, Greek Yoghurt and Fruits.

We’re obsessed with the French influence on this breakfast menu, too. From All-Butter Croissant with Strawberry Jam to Croque Monsieur with Ham and Gruyère Cheese and Pain Au Chocolat all made fresh every morning – who needs a trip to Paris when sat outside at Café 21 Express in the sun?


If you’re after more of a secluded spot for a relaxing cuppa (or cocktail), then look no further than Café 21 York.

There’s nothing better than having a hot brew in the morning to set you up for the day. Whether you’re an Espresso lover, always craving a Cappuccino or fancy a good ol’ Yorkshire Tea (it would be rude not to when in York), Café 21 is the perfect spot to get your caffeine fix ready for a day of adventures.

And for those of you who like something a little stronger, then you’re in luck. From awakening your sense with a spicy Bloody Mary to a refreshing prosecco cocktail like a Bellini or Mimosa (or two), Café 21 York’s cocktails really do hit the spot.

Café 21 York breakfast times: Monday – Saturday: 9am – 11.30am; Sunday: 10.30am – 11.30am

Café 21 Express opening times: Monday – Saturday: 8am – 5pm; Sunday: 10am – 4pm


To browse the menus and find out more about dining at Café 21 York, visit their website

Or you can follow Café 21 York on Facebook and Instagram 

Café 21, Fenwick, 2 St Mary’s Square, Coppergate Centre, York YO1 9WY

Other stories by Rachael Nichol
Finest Properties Breckon Hill

Inside the Grade II listed farmhouse in Northumberland that’s worth over £1.2m

Rachael Nichol
Easter breaks in Northumberland

Easter escapes: The 4 Northumberland cottages that the whole family will enjoy

Rachael Nichol

6 stylish Sunderland coffee shops for your caffeine fix

Rachael Nichol
Woodland Chase Glamping Northumberland

From a romantic treehouse to a private spa oasis – Unwind at Woodland Chase Glamping

Rachael Nichol
Simonside by Dan Monk Photography

9 romantic stargazing stays and experiences in Dark Skies, Northumberland

Rachael Nichol
Liddel Water Lodges

Unwind in style with these luxury log cabins with hot tubs near Lake District

Rachael Nichol