Harley Young soaks up the sun with runny eggs on sourdough

What: à bloc

Where: 38 Stamford Park Rd, Altrincham WA15 9EW

Food/Drink type: Brunch, small plates, doughnuts, sweet treats, wine, beer

When: Tuesday to Friday 8am - 9:30pm, Saturday to Sunday 9am - 9:30pm

Independent or chain: Independent

2024 05 16 A Bloc Outside 1
Outside à bloc Image: Confidentials


Situated on the corner of Hawthorne Road, on the end of a row of terraced houses, across the street from the ever pleasant Stamford Park, à bloc ticks all the boxes when it comes to being an aesthetic Alty haunt. 

In the unit that once was just Hale Cycleworks, the bikes have moved downstairs and freshly baked doughnuts and artisan wines have taken their place. A great trade-off if you ask me. 

The bright and airy venue combines Scandi decor with a French bistro feel, taking it right through from early morning coffee shop to late evening wine lounge. If you’re after a joint with character, à bloc has plenty of it. 

2024 05 16 A Bloc Inside 1
Inside à bloc Image: Confidentials
2024 05 16 A Bloc Inside 2
Inside à bloc Image: Confidentials
2024 05 16 A Bloc Inside 3
Inside à bloc Image: Confidentials
2024 05 16 A Bloc Outside 2
Outside à bloc Image: Confidentials
2024 05 16 A Bloc Outside 3
Outside à bloc Image: Confidentials

The Main Event

With the sun beating down on Stanley Square, we decided to sit in the well-contained seating area out front and got to work browsing the menu. There’s only a handful of items on the breakfast and lunch menu here, but I often prefer that. Sometimes too much choice can be overwhelming - besides, a small menu allows a business to focus on making sure what they offer is really bloody good. 

I chose the avocado toast (£12.50 from the lunch menu; whipped feta on sourdough, sliced avocado, poached eggs, pickled pink onions, toasted pine nuts and a drizzle of chilli honey. The whipped feta was lovely and fresh, not too chalky, and cut through the zestiness of the pickled pink onions well. Melded with the golden runny yolk of the poached eggs and the plump and fatty slices of avocado, this dish was everything I could’ve wanted and more from a somewhat healthy veggie lunch.

2024 05 16 A Bloc Avocado Toast
Avocado toast Image: Confidentials

Dave went with the ‘Bloc Breakfast’ (£13, available until 12:30pm) and, when he saw the size of his hashbrown he was pretty chuffed he did. The breakfast came with all the trimmings you’d expect, but of great calibre - locally sourced bacon and sausage, two eggs cooked your way (fried for Dave), slow roasted tomato, ‘Bloc beans’ and the whopping housemade hashbrown that stole both of our hearts. If it wasn’t for my diet I’d have nicked it off his plate while he wasn’t looking, but I settled for a teeny tiny mouthful instead - even the crumbs tasted like heaven.

The Bloc beans are something special, too. None of that fresh-out-the-tin Branston nonsense. No, these are made with plenty of love and just enough spice to keep things interesting. Perfect for dipping your hash brown in according to Dave. Jealous isn’t the word. 

Both plates had plenty on them and we certainly didn’t go hungry. 

2024 05 16 A Bloc Breakfast 1
The 'Bloc breakfast' Image: Confidentials
2024 05 16 A Bloc Breakfast 2
The 'Bloc breakfast' Image: Confidentials

I eyed up the doughnuts from afar one last time and could hear the faint sound of my nutritionist and PT pecking my head, so thought I’d better not bother. Once this diet is done with, I’ll be back though. And I’ll probably be dreaming of them every day until then.

2024 05 16 A Bloc Donuts
The delectable looking doughnuts Image: Confidentials

à bloc has nestled right into its home in Altrincham and has quickly become a popular spot to pop in for a coffee and freshly baked treat.

A short walk away from the high street and tram, I can think of few better ways to while away the afternoon than with a selection of fresh, well-sourced food and a glass or two of wine at this charming gaff. See you again soon, à bloc. Keep those doughnuts warm for me. 

à bloc, 38 Stamford Park Rd, Altrincham WA15 9EW

à bloc is on Confidential Guides

Recommended by Confidential Guides

The scores

All scored reviews are unannounced, impartial, and ALWAYS paid for by Confidentials.com and completely independent of any commercial relationship. They are a first-person account of one visit by one, knowledgeable restaurant reviewer and don't represent the company as a whole.

If you want to see the receipt as proof this magazine paid for the meal then a copy will be available upon request. Or maybe ask the restaurant.

Venues are rated against the best examples of their type. What we mean by this is a restaurant which aspires to be fine dining is measured against other fine dining restaurants, a mid-range restaurant against other mid-range restaurants, a pizzeria against other pizzerias, a teashop against other teashops, a KFC against the contents of your bin. You get the message.

Given the above, this is how we score: 1-5: saw your leg off and eat it, 6-9: sigh and shake your head, 10-11: if you’re passing, 12-13: good, 14-15: very good, 16-17: excellent, 18-19: pure class, 20: nothing's that good is it?

  • Food 8/10

    Avocado toast 7.5, Bloc Breakfast 8.5

  • Ambience 4.5/5

  • Service 4/5