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

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Tuesday, 22 December 2015

Lets go fly a kite. (Cafe Jungle, Costessey)

Café Jungle,
Costessey,
Opening times Mon-Sun 10:00-17:00,
Recommended 
Despite it being rather windy I felt it was important to try and get one last cafe cycle ride in before Christmas, my 85th of the year. Using the gift of fibbing I managed to persuade Chris (Mrs Crusader) that it wasn't too windy to go cycling and she therefore reluctantly agreed to be today's cycling guest.

My planned route was a 30 mile loop with our cafe stop, the Jungle cafe at Costessey, coming towards the end. As we set off from race HQ it soon became clear just how strong the wind was and there was much yelping and screaming coming from behind as the cross winds tried to push Chris off her bike. My suggestion that this was a good way of improving both fitness and her bike handling skills didn't seem to help. I ignored all comments suggesting I had said it wasn't going to be windy today claiming I couldn't hear what she was saying due to the strong wind.
Picture of the wind which is unfortunately invisible
Fortunately we had the wind predominately helping us on the second half of the ride so progress sped up and we soon reached the Urban Jungle Garden centre where we found the Jungle Cafe in amongst the palm trees.
Outside Cafe Jungle
After parking our bikes we went in side to find an exciting environment of tropical plants with seating areas in between. This was the first Jungle based cafe I had been too and, despite the lack of celebrities trying to get out of there, I awarded a high atmosphere and ambiance score.

However I was then presented with a cafe cycle ride reviewing dilemma as there were virtual no cakes on display for me to judge the effective cake selection (ECS). I enquired about the surprising lack of cake, it transpired that this was the last day Cafe Jungle was open until 1st February as they were about to extend their kitchen meaning they were basically out of their normal range of cake. They only had some brownies and individual bakewell tarts left. I decided that it would be unfair to rate the ECS in these unusual circumstances so gave an average ECS score and will update properly on a return visit.

In terms of coffee there was a selection of beans that you could chose from which would be freshly ground for you. This is good for coffee lovers but as a consequence they didn't do fancy coffees like mochas and cappuccinos etc just proper tasting stuff. Chris, who normally mochas, went for a Nicaraguan bean.

We took a seat in the tropical sofa seating area where our drinks and cakes were delivered to the table. 
Tropical sofa area
As a nice surprise we were given a bonus piece of bakewell tart to go with our brownies as it would have otherwise gone to waste and they could clearly spot a cake lover when they saw one. The hot chocolate was nice and hot and Chris also enjoyed her coffee but would go for a stronger bean next time.
Cakes and drinks
We both liked the Jungle cafe but because of the forth coming refurbishments I didn't think we had done it justice so I will definitely be back in the spring for the full treatment and recommend a visit. (Note I did return the following year and it was very good).

It seemed strange to leave the tropical environment and return to a grey and blustery landscape especially as the wind seemed to have picked up, which was a shame as we had to ride directly into it for the last few miles. For some reason my suggestion that we could go and fly my kite in the park when we got back didn't go down as well as I had hoped.

Scores based on 2 visits
Hot Choc Quality
Guest Hot Drink Quality
Effective Cake Selection
Cake Quality
Ambiance and Atmosphere
Café Rating
6.875
7.5
5.75
7.25
8.00
7.08
Route

Click here to download 31 mile Norwich Weston Longville loop gpx file for your gps

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