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


Friday, 29 August 2014

London to Paris by bike. Day 2 the dash.

London to Paris,

Day 2
The second day of our London to Paris bike trip got under way with a good breakfast at the White Lion hotel in Seaford which had been a very pleasant stop. I wasn't expecting to be able to do any cycle cafe reviewing today as we would be on the ferry and then had arranged to get to our overnight accommodation by 7:30pm. This would mean we would have to go flat out for 45 miles across France. To encourage Big George I told him if we weren't there on time we won't get an evening meal. Although this was technically a lie I felt it was the correct motivational approach required.
Big George sneaking out the White Lion Hotel Seaford
We left the White Lion early to give us plenty of time to cycle the 3 miles to the ferry. I wanted to leave us enough time in order that; I could buy better lights for my bike, Big George could purchase a knee brace (so I could have mine back) and I could try and replace my map route guide book which you may recall had been stolen by an organised gang of generic eastern European pickpockets at knife point. We were successful on the first two but once again failed to source a replacement map route guide book. Although later that day I did manage to pick up a leaflet about the route on the ferry, albeit in French and with only a tiny map, so not much of a replacement really.
Riding along the cycle path to Newhaven
We caught the ferry with no problems. We had to wait in the car park for boarding with a lot of other cyclists, many of which were going to Paris. Obviously we had to work out who was going the furthest and quickest to get there. By eavesdropping on all the conversations and then comparing notes we convinced ourselves that we were the most hardcore. Some of the other cyclists were planning to include sightseeing on their rides, a very strange approach I thought.
Boarding the ferry with lots of other cyclists
Once on board I was excited to see that the ferry had a cafe that I could rate. However according to cafe rating rules in order to be reviewed a cafe must provide homemade cake, which this one didn't. It also served its drinks from a vending machine in paper cups so I decided to save it from the embarrassment of a potentially poor rating.

We arrived in France and got off the ferry. I quickly adjusted to the riding on the right side of the road nonsense with the help of a gentle reminder from the traffic heading straight for me on the road out of Dieppe. It was then on to 30 miles of Tarmac, off-road, pancake flat cycle path to speed along enjoying the lovely French country side. We turned off the path for the final 15 miles of rather hilly terrain to our planned stop. 

You can tell I'm cycling in France in this photo as I'm on the right side of the road
Cyling in France on the right of the road
We arrived at 7:40 only 10 mins after planned and were greeted by the owners of Chambres d'hôtes "La Brayonne" Sophie and Erick (www.chambresdhoteslabrayonne.com). We would be the only guests tonight and would be eating with our hosts once we had freshened up.

Big George was becoming increasingly jealous of my new light weight rohan casual trousers I was able to slip on for dinner each night as he only had a pair of scruffy shorts. I could tell this as he had taken to insulting them saying they were the travel clothes for the Saga generation which I thought was a bit harsh.

As our accommodation was away from any town or village Big George was worried that he wouldn't be getting any beer tonight. However his fears were short lived as Sophie provide a fantastic meal (including a traditional French cheeses, or fromage, course) accompanied by home made aperitif, home made cider, red wine and calvadre (cider brandy). The whole lot was superb. 

Sophie spoke good English and Big George a bit (petit) of French but I don't speak French nor Erick English. Everything was fine until Big George popped to the loo and Sophie had to answer the phone. This left me and poor Erik looking nervously at each other across the table until he wisely decided to go and cut some more bread in the kitchen. It's times like this I which I was better at languages but they are all Dutch to me.

We had a great evening and I would highly recommend a stay if you are cycling out that way. We went off to bed to rest up before tomorrow's 'big day' where we need to ride 100 plus miles without the aid of a map route guide book. It should give plenty of opportunities for some French cycle cafe rating and who knows I may find the Cake Crusader European cafe of the year 2014.

To find out what happens next go to London to Paris by bike day 3.

Route from Dieppe to Dampierre en Bray 
Click link to download London to Paris day 2 route GPX file for your GPS

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