The Heart & Soul Food Company at The Hampton, Brighton

The Heart & Soul Food Company is the latest venture to take over the kitchen at Drink in Brighton boozer, The Hampton. I read a review about the food which I immediately disregarded (for many reasons) and went with an open mind. Feel free to do the same with me, but I’d be fascinated to know what your thoughts on the food are, genuinely.

Who remembers Momma Cherri’s Soul Food shack (the original venue)? I bloody loved that place, and the food, so since its closure I’ve always had one eye out for an alternative. I can now quite confidently say, Momma C would laugh in the face of the food I was served at The Hampton.

*disclaimer* There’s a few times throughout this blog where I say the food tasted like it entered the kitchen already cooked/in a packet. This is my opinion, and if I’m wrong, well, whoever was behind the meal I ate has got a glittering career at Brake Bros with their name on, if the whole ‘soul food’ thing doesn’t work out for them.

We chose half a dozen side portions so we could get as wide a variety as possible. Most are also available in main course size- not something I would recommend though.

I can’t think of a better way to describe the service other than lame, so I’ll save my words for something even more undeserving of my time and energy. The food.

Jumbo Shrimp in Chilli, Garlic and Coriander- £3

The person I was out for lunch with is far less inclined to complain than I am, but days later I am still receiving random texts from her saying ‘I CAN’T STOP THINKING ABOUT HOW SHIT THOSE PRAWNS WERE’. It’d actually have been amusing had we not’ve paid £3 for them and eaten more than a small mouthful each. Definitely not a hint of the promised coriander or chilli in the butter either, just a slight garlicky undertone.

Southern Fried Chicken- £2.50

Cheap, dirty looking chicken that had brown strings of something unpleasant running throughout most of it. Flaccid, greasy and not even a hint of the crispness one might hope for from such a dish. Really weak. Colonel Sanders would be spinning in his coffin at the mere thought of this crime against fried chicken.


Try as I might I cannot find a single positive thing to say about this. It’s as bad as it looks. I cannot. even. I’ve had some seriously questionable Mac ‘n’ cheese recently, but this was definitely the worst of a pretty decrepit bunch. Pricing it at £3 for a miniature bowl was a very ambitious move on their part too.

I went to the shop virtually next door to get a drink after the onslaught of unpleasantness, and right by the door was this pile of tins of this rather familiar looking… gloop. I’ll leave you to draw your own conclusions.

In case you were wondering what £3.50 worth of ribs looks like

If there was a gun to my head and the only way to save my life was picking a favourite dish from everything we were served that day, then I would begrudgingly pick the ribs. The sauce they were glazed in was overly sweet and cloying, but the meat was tender. That’s the best I can muster up in terms of praise I’m afraid. Sorry about that.

Corn and avocado salsa- £2.50

There is literally not a single thing to recommend this unpleasant concoction. When we saw corn and avocado salsa (for £2.50) we were picturing chunks of avocado and sweetcorn, when in reality it was just a tomato base with a few kernels mixed in and topped with what very much looks like shop bought guacamole. Fridge cold, lazy and tasted almost entirely of tomatoes and disappointment.

Bourbon BBQ sauce – £1.50

This tasted OK but a special mention must go to whoever managed to make the homemade BBQ sauce look just like it had been squeezed out of a giant catering bottle of shop bought stuff, really quite remarkable….

No one came to check back on our food, presumably the lady who brought it down already knew how awful it was, and the barman, well, he was a bit too busy doing nothing at all. They forgot our jalapeños, I couldn’t be bothered to get them to bring us some down after, not after tasting the rest.

We didn’t stay for pudding, we’d suffered quite enough by that point.

Alex summed up our meal perfectly; ‘from freezer to fryer to plate’. Here’s what I say: Go to KFC, get a ready meal from Iceland or even just the corner shop for some vacumn-packed synthetic tasting ribs. Whatever you do it’ll be less disappointing and costly than the unfortunate experience I had at the Heart and Soul food company.

Have you eaten the food at the Hampton? Is there ANYWHERE at all serving soul food in Brighton that is decent? Please do tweet me or comment below.

Follow me: Instagram | Twitter | Facebook | Bloglovin | YouTube



  1. Anonymous
    March 26, 2015 / 10:38 pm

    Maybe if you weren't so single, desperate and destined to die alone you wouldn't be so bitter?

    • March 26, 2015 / 11:15 pm

      Wow anon, do you work for Drink in Brighton?

    • March 26, 2015 / 11:42 pm

      In fact, I know exactly who you are, you lanky disgrace of a human being. Nice one.

    • March 27, 2015 / 1:14 pm

      Wow, someone just got exposed behind their keyboard! That's a bit awkward.

      I'm so glad you reviewed this place as I probably would of ended up going there. That food honestly looked so rank, especially the chicken and macaroni. And I cannot believe they charged that much for 3 baby ribs!!!


  2. Anonymous
    March 26, 2015 / 11:06 pm

    Your blog is like reading a menopausal woman's diary after shes been dumped and then went to harvester

    • March 26, 2015 / 11:15 pm

      So don't read it then, you utter dickhead.

    • March 27, 2015 / 9:55 am

      Thank you Chloe, what a lovely comment to receive after the last!

      Have a fab weekend xx

  3. Holly Matilda
    March 27, 2015 / 11:45 pm

    Thanks for the heads-up! The mac&cheese- christ! That's one to avoid….

    • March 30, 2015 / 3:10 pm

      🙂 you are welcome! Deffo one to avoid, the commenter below has suggested Jukes on Portland Road in Hove so have added to the list too x

  4. Anonymous
    March 30, 2015 / 2:41 pm

    New place called Jukes on Portland Road just opposite the Junior School opened a few months ago. They do Caribbean soul food, not tried it yet but looks interesting.

    • March 30, 2015 / 3:10 pm

      Just been stalking their menu and it looks good, thanks so much for the suggestion!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.