Friday, 15 October 2010

Baguettes Plus - Norwich

66 Prince of Wales Road

Limited metered parking available on Prince of Wales Road

I must admit I had never noticed it before and only usually end up on Prince of Wales road after dark, probably too drunk after leaving Hades bar at silly o' clock to notice such things!

Clean and spacious inside

Everything you need huddled together neatly

Tea was £1.60 for a pot, I wish I had left that tea bag in a bit longer though..

It will not be winning any prizes for content but it was cooked nicely, tasted delicious and was a complete pleasure to eat!

The six month dentist checkup had gone without a hitch and as I left the dentist on Prince of Wales Road I spotted a cafe I had never really noticed, time for another fry up but was it any good..

Upon entering - I was pleasantly surprised at how big the place was, loads of seating and a counter towards the rear. The pan pipe music being played in the background wasn't really my thing but it might appeal to some, actually it probably wouldn't but at least there was no deadly silence. There are menus on each table and a big one over the counter. 6/10

Service - The well spoken chap who took my order seemed friendly enough taking my order and asked if I would like any extras, I couldn't see any extras on the menu so wouldn't know for sure what they are anyway. The food was bought over fairly swiftly after ordering it. 7/10

Contents - 2 sausages, 2 bacon, fried egg, baked beans, toast and butter. 6/10

Presentation - There wasn't a lot on the plate to present but what was there sat nicely together. If I have to be picky the sausage near the edge of the plate would have looked better facing the other way so it flowed with the plate edge. I didn't lose no sleep over it though so not a problem! 7/10

The food - 2 delicious pork sausages, really good bacon, a text book fried egg and nice beans that were slightly stogy how I like them, a nice slice of toast and proper butter. It was cooked very nicely and a joy to eat. 9/10

Value for money - £5 for what I got felt like a fair price as it tasted so damn good. A pot of tea cost an additional £1.60. 8/10

Veggie option - Yes

Overall - A good spacious cafe, friendly staff and great food. Well worth a visit if you are passing but if you want extras on your fry up it will bump the price up and im not really sure what the extras are as they are not listed anywhere. Don't forget your ipod if you want to avoid a pan pipes rendition of careless whisper! 7/10

Breakfast @ Goodwood Hotel - London

Tavistock Place
King's Cross

Just had to share this photo of Breakfast @ Goodwood Hotel in King's Cross. You have to collect this humble offering from the chap downstairs in the reception, I never have been a fan of the continental breakfast, especially when it's presented this badly!

Cafe Le Jardin - London

16 Bell Lane
E1 7LA

Cafe Le Jardin was the first cafe we found so in we went.

The place had a nice feel to it and was clean

The prices seemed fair considering we were in the centre of the UK's banking hub.

My old enemy "ketchup watered down with vinegar" had returned to haunt me

The perfect cuppa

Paper plates were to become a feature of my weekend in London!

Lots of food but it was quite an average eating sensation, at least it wasn't on a paper plate though!

Sublime were playing Shepherds Bush Empire on Friday night and The Grit were playing The Gaff on Saturday night, excellent stuff another weekend in London! We were staying at a Travelodge on the Friday night and breakfast was not included so we left the hotel and Cafe Le Jardin was the first Cafe we stumbled across so in we went..

Upon entering - The place seemed popular with builders but was clean, light and airy. Menu's on each table made ordering easy. 7/10

Service - I didn't actually order on this occasion but the process was the usual pop to the counter and it gets bought to you when it is ready scenario. Extra mushrooms were ordered on both fry ups but only arrived on one. The owner was very friendly though even saying goodbye to us a few minutes after leaving the cafe when we saw him again a few streets away. 6/10

Contents - 1 jumbo sausage, 2 bacon, 2 fried eggs, 2 hash browns, beans, mushrooms, toast & butter and tea or coffee. 7/10

Presentation - Ok but no work of art and why serve the toast on a paper plate? 5/10

The food - Everything was cooked ok but the jumbo sausage was cheap quality economy and the rest was just average. The hash browns I liked a lot though, they tasted of onions. 6/10

Value for money - Considering the location £4.20 seemed really cheap, tea or coffee was included in the price. There was so much on the plate i couldn't finish it. 8/10

Veggie option - Yes, see menu pic above

Overall - Quite a pleasant cafe in a great location and great value for money, the food is fairly standard though. 6/10

Friday, 8 October 2010

Harty's Diner - Norwich (with update)

61 Heigham Street

Opening times
Monday - Friday
6am - 1.45pm

7am - 12.30pm

Well done Harty's! Food score 10/10, the 1st 10 I have ever given and they deserve it. Nothing on the plate could have been improved on in my opinion, pure perfection!!!

Harty's has been on Heigham Street for many years and they refuse to let standards slip.

The Cafe is light, airy, spacious and clean.

On a recent visit I discovered the old tables and chairs had been replaced with new ones. 

Every table is fully armed for a full on condiment attack when the food arrives.

These are the set breakfast options.  Mushrooms, bubble & squeak, black pudding and hash browns are available as extras too.

A good strong mug of tea while you wait for the food.

Bread & butter was not mentioned on the menu but it arrived anyway, bonus!

The best fried bread I have ever tasted!!

Back in the late 80's I passed Harty's Diner on Heigham Street as I walked to Project 86, home of YTS. I friend of mine recently mentioned what a cracking fry up they cooked so the time had come to find out for myself..

Upon entering - The cafe is light and airy, towards the rear is the counter where you place your order. The food on offer is displayed on a large menu above the counter. 8/10

Service - The friendly staff take your order at the counter and bring the food to your table when it is ready. I was asked if I would like beans or tomatoes, before I had time to think about it they said have both if you want, that is the kind of service I like to see! 9/10

Contents - 2 sausages, 2 bacon, 2 fried eggs, fried bread, beans & tinned tomatoes. Although not mentioned on the menu bread & butter arrived too. 8/10

Presentation - It looked amazing when it arrived, everything sat nicely together and you could see how good it was going to be. 9/10

The food - Perfection at last!! Perfectly cooked juicy pork sausages, perfectly cooked tasty bacon, perfect fried eggs,the best fried bread I have ever tasted - crunchy but not soaked in oil, plum tomatoes that were intact and not flooding the whole plate, great tasting beans and lovely soft white bread and butter. In my opinion this place has perfected cooking the fry up, they shouldn't change a thing! 10/10

Value for money - When it tastes this good £5.50 is exceptional value for money! 9/10

Veggie option - Yes

Overall - Next time you fancy a fry up pop along to Harty's, you are in for a real treat!. Other cafe's should close for an hour and pop down to Harty's for inspiration.
Of all the Cafe's I have tried so far Harty's is my favourite, go and find out for yourself you wont be disappointed. 9/10

I returned on 31/12/2010 to see if the food was as good second time round. It was to my delight just as good and I also noticed some extras that can be added to the standard fry up for 80p each, these were.. Mushrooms, Black pudding, Bubble & squeak & hash browns.

On my return visit everything was as good as it had been before, this time I had mushrooms as an extra and they were delicious.

The perfect cake to celebrate turning 40 based on the amazing Harty's Diner fry up!!

I just had to go back and try the bubble & squeak and it (along with everything else on the plate) was delicious as always!

Saturday, 2 October 2010

Cafe 91 - Norwich

**Now closed**

91 Upper St Giles Street

Cafe 91 is located on the delightful Upper St Giles Street.

There are plenty of places to sit and eat.

At the back of the cafe the seating gets more comfortable.

Fresh flowers on each table but not a bottle of HP in sight.

The glass of orange juice kept me company whilst I waited 20 minutes for the food to arrive.

I was pleasantly surprised when the ketchup arrived!

Lettuce on a fry up was a first for me and beans would have been better, the food did all taste delicious though.

I had heard mixed views on Cafe 91 so I was eager to go along and find out for myself. I knew it was a more up market cafe than I would usually visit but was it any good? Well...

Upon entering - There is a counter to your left as you enter and tables are spread across 3 areas of the cafe. The area toward the back had comfy looking chairs but seemed busy so I picked a table in the middle section. The cafe has a waitress service, don't expect a smile though. 7/10

Service - I didn't have to wait very long for the waitress to bring me a menu and take my order. I did wait for what seems like an eternity for my food to arrive though and the place was half empty. I would usually always leave a tip when there is a waitress service but as none of the waitresses smiled at anyone at all I decided not to. 5/10

Contents - 1 sausage, 2 bacon, fried egg, mushroom, grilled tomatoes, toast & butter and wait for it.....
A sprig of lettuce covered in a wholegrain mustard dressing!! 6/10

Presentation - Well it looked ok but the toast would have looked better on a side plate, but then the small amount of food on the main plate would have become more apparent. 6/10

The food - A deliciously juicy pork sausage, good quality bacon that was cooked to perfection, a nicely fried egg and fried mushrooms, grilled tomatoes that were juicy and very tasty, the toast was nice but not very hot, the lettuce and mustard dressing was lovely! 9/10

Value for money - For a more up-market cafe I thought £5.95 was very reasonable and a glass of orange juice was included in the price too. 8/10

Veggie option - Yes

Overall - If you are going to have a waitress service a smile goes a long way. If you are advertising a full english breakfast google it first as lettuce is not the norm. The food tasted delicious, quality ingredients are used and the price seemed quite reasonable. 7/10

Belle Vue - Norwich

46 St Philips Road

Breakfast served
Monday to Friday - 11am till 2.30pm
Saturday - 10.30am till 2.30pm
Sunday -  10am till 11.30pm

On-street parking possible outside pub

The Belle Vue stands on the corner of St Philips Road & Stafford Street

The menu on each table will help you decide

A good varied breakfast menu.

The whopper comes with a nice big glass of orange juice.

Condiments ahoy!

The whopper will keep you going for hours! Under the toast was a hidden mass of mushrooms.

I didn't think I could finish it.

I did though!

The blackboard near the bar in the Belle Vue displaying its fry up selection has for many years made me want to come in and try one. Friends have said how good they are and I have enjoyed eating there in the evenings on a number of occasions. The day had arrived, in I went with fully charged iphone in hand eager to rate out of 10..

Upon entering - As you enter there are no shortage of menus, you place your order at the bar and pick a table. The interior is very traditional and has been the same for years. It has a very cosy feel to it, in the winter they always light a real log fire. 8/10

Service - Friendly staff take your order at the bar, bring condiments & cutlery to your table and eventually the food. 8/10

Contents - The whopper consisted of: 2 sausages, 3 bacon, 2 fried eggs, 2 hash browns, chips, mushrooms, beans, grilled tomato, toast & butter and a glass of orange juice. 7/10

Presentation - When it arrived I was shocked at the shear size of it but everything sat nicely on the plate. The hidden sea of mushrooms under the toast was a nice surprise. 7/10

The food - The sausages are very standard economy but were at least cooked nicely, the bacon was cooked to perfection and tasted really nice, both eggs were good with nice runny yolks, nice crunchy hash browns and chips although potato overload did spring to mind, great fried mushrooms that were not too oily, im not a fan of grilled tomato but it tasted nice as did the beans, I liked the fact the toast was already buttered. 7/10

Value for money - You will not be disappointed with what you get for £5.75 and you won't leave hungry. 8/10

Veggie option - Yes, see menu pic above.

Overall - Good honest pub grub. Im not really a fan of potato overload on fry ups but on this occasion it worked ok. No stand out ingredients used but you get a lot for your money and it's cooked well. I finished mine cos it was such a pleasure to eat, im sure you will too. 7.5/10