What’s Wild Goose Bakery really like?

And why the name? We reveal all you need to know about E11’s loveliest new cafe

Cakes in the window. Photos: Stephen Emms
Piled high in the window. Photos: Stephen Emms
Wild Goose Bakery opened on High Road Leytonstone last autumn and quickly became one of our favourite places for an early morning caffeine hit, a lunchtime hang, or a mid-afternoon sugar fix. You get the picture, it just works at any time of the day.

Married chefs Vernon and Kirsten are behind this artisan bakery-cum-café, which, they say, was named to reflect their belief in helping people. Geese, apparently, stay with birds injured during migration until they’ve recovered or drawn their last breath. (There you go, something new for today.)

Temptation. Photo: Stephen Emms
More temptation. Photo: Stephen Emms
When considering an artisan bakery it makes sense to start with the baked goods, which are – without exception – delicious. As well as a range of sourdough loaves, the counter is piled high with a tempting selection of sweet treats, often with a creative twist: expect green tea lemon drizzle cake, dark chocolate rocky road, cherry almond loaf and peppermint brownies, as well as classics such as cinnamon buns, granola bars and red velvet cake.

Coffee is made with beans from local roasters Climpson & Sons, there’s a selection of teas from Edinburgh-based tea fanatics Eteaket and sodas are by Hackney’s Square Root London. There’s also a range of locally-sourced goodies that would make great gifts, such as East London honey or scented candles.

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The café at the back is a cosy haven from the high street. The walls are bare brick, painted white and usually covered with art, currently pieces by local artist Elliot Ashton. Seating is at tables of varying sizes or in armchairs and there’s a bookshelf at the back filled with novels and children’s picture books to keep adults and little ones entertained during your visit. The crockery (vintage, floral) is housed in wooden crates fixed to the walls behind the counter, an interiors idea we’re totally stealing.

The stylish counter with seating beyond. Photo: SE
The stylish counter with seating beyond. Photo: SE
If you don’t fancy cake for breakfast, the menu includes porridge made with British jumbo oats and topped with (yum) your choice of honey, homemade jam, dark chocolate drops, seasonal fruit compote or nuts and seeds; granola with seasonal fruit compote and yoghurt or, our favourite, sourdough toast with butter and preserves.

At lunchtime you can choose from options such as toasted sandwiches, quiche of the day, or soup – which comes with toasted sourdough, of course.

Most of all? We like the month-in-focus blackboard featuring useful dates to remember, a list of in-season-right-now fruit and veg, plus a recipe breakdown. February’s is blood orange spritzer, a vodka-powered afternoon beverage which we reckon would work very well with a slice of that green tea lemon drizzle cake. In the comfort of your own home, of course.

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Find Wild Goose Bakery at 654 High Road Leytonstone, E11 3AA. Follow them on Twitter @wildgoosebakery
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  • Marian Bulford

    Gonna try this place next time I am ‘over ‘ome’ !