Lets find a Cafe (or tearoom)

Lets find a Cafe (or tearoom)

Locations of reviewed cafes

For more information on the Cafes I have visited and the latest cafe cycle news go to http://www.cake-crusader.co.uk/

Cake Crusader Book

There is now a Cake Crusader book available where you can follow my journey from humble local trips to world record attempts and near-death experiences. How did a simple method of keeping track of decent cycling café pit stops turn my life upside down? Track my adventures into Europe, up mountains and right across Great Britain as I become a 'rising star' on social media. Will I prove my critics wrong? Should cheese scones be served hot or cold? Do I really have nothing better to do with his time? A must read for lovers of cycling and cake or anyone wanting to make it big in the virtual world

Available on Amazon

Thursday 16 January 2014

A long way round. (The Pennoyer Centre Cafe. Pulham St Mary.)

Pennoyer Centre,
Pulham St Mary,
Opening times Mon-Sat 09:30-03:30,
 Highly Recommended
For yesterday's ride myself and guest Andrew (who is notoriously hard to please) decided to head south to an old favourite the Pennoyer centre cafe in Pulham St Mary. It was one of the first cafes I found when I first started cafe rating but on my last visit in late summer it had not been up to its previously very high standard so I was keen to see if normal service had been resumed.

The ride got off to a bad start as all my attention was absorbed by Andrew's latest rant and I missed the turning we should have taken. After a couple of hundred yards I realised my mistake. The option to turn back was not open to us, because as proper men we can never admit we have gone wrong and must continue to confidently cycle in the direction we are going. Knowing the roads in the area quite well we agreed a possible alternative route that would get us back on the track without turning round. So in the end instead of going back 200 yards we added 5 miles, into the wind, onto our journey. After much muttering and whinging from 'notoriously hard to please' Andrew we continued down to Pulham St Mary.
Outside The Pennoyer Centre in Pulham St Mary.
 In summer a small outdoor seating area is provide right where I'm standing.
The Pennoyer Centre Cafe is in The Pennoyer Centre which is like a posh village hall and provides a centre for Pulham St Mary community activity. On arrival I activated Alarmio to secure our bikes and we went straight through to the Kitchen area to make our cake selection.
Today's cakes selection including Ruth's invisible cheese scones.
The cakes all seem to be made by the ladies of the village and are labelled with their names. From previous experience the cakes can sell out by the end of the day so due to our little detour the selection had already gone down. However all the remaining cakes looked very tasty so I awarded a good effective cake selection rating.

I ordered hot chocolate and chocolate cake and Andrew a cappuccino and Spanish orange cake. On a previous visit I had had one of my best hot chocolates ever and although this one was still very good it didn't get back to that level. Andrew had also previously had one of his best coffees ever here but today his cappuccino fell short of that exceptional high standard. Being notoriously hard to please this seemed to cheer him up and he got over the extra 5 mile slog I had added to the route.

The chocolate cake was about as good as chocolate cake gets, however I have realised that there is a ceiling as to how good a chocolate cake can be and it can never be as good as the best carrot cake or cheese scone. I got to try the Spanish orange cake which I thought was even nicer than the chocolate cake and helped support my chocolate cake ceiling theory but true to form Andrew found it a touch sweet. I, however, awarded a high cake quality rating.

As the ladies of the Pennoyer Centre Cafe seem to see me as a regular (I last came in August) I was invited to have a loyalty card. It will be another 8 times before I can claim my free drink but I have put a date in the diary for July 2016 when I expect to have completed the requisite number of visits. The Pennoyer Centre Cafe remains one of my favourite destinations and with the added loyalty card incentive I will be back soon, but before then I have lots more cafes I need to review.

On the way back we had the wind behind and didn't get lost so Andrew turned his attention to rants about pilates and the water industry instead. 

I have been asked to find a good cafe in the North Walsham area so if anyone has any suggestions then please let me know and I'll head out that way.

Cafe ratings for the Pennoyer Centre cafe based on latest 3 of 9 visits are
Hot Choc Quality
Guest Hot Drink Quality
Effective Cake Selection
Cake Quality
Ambiance and Atmosphere
Café Rating

This is the route we took:

View 37 Miles Pulham st Mary in a larger map

Click link to download 37 mile Norwich Pulham St Mary loop GPX file for your GPS


  1. Hi Kevin, really enjoyed reading your blog about your cafe experience at Pennoyer's. This is excellent feedback for us and very happy with your 7.40 which seems to position us well in your league table. We try to get our coffee and hot chocolate to a consistenly high standard, so I'm pleased that we have managed to do that the Thursday. Hope your loyalty card get used before July 2016!! If you bring 6 friends next time you can get you free cup even quicker. Thanks for including us in your blog and look forward to seeing you again soon - Kath (Trustee)

  2. Hi Kath, Thanks for the blog feedback. It really is one of my favourite places for a stop. Love the idea of bumping up my loyalty card with a group visit. I shall certainly plan such an outing.