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, 18 October 2016

The Great Ride North in aid of World Bicycle Relief . Day 7. Lindisfarne to Musselburgh

The Great Ride North
Day 7
Ebbcarrs cafe, St Ebb,
Tue-Sun 10-4
Graze chocolate and coffee house, Dunbar
Open everyday 9-4

So far we have been pretty lucky with the wind, we had plenty of cross winds in Lincolnshire but not yet had a day when it was against all the way, that is until today when we would be into the wind for most of our 75 mile ride to Musselburgh on the outskirts of Edinburgh.

An early start was the order of the day but this turned out not to be possible as breakfast was only available from 8:00 so by the time we set off were already on the clock.
About to set off into the wind
With no big towns to go through today then I was expecting a flying start but unfortunately National cycle route 1 had other ideas by directing us across a series of muddy fields. At one point Chris (Mrs Crusader) fell off her bike, which was apparently my fault and although I didn't actually understand why I promised not to do it again.
National cycle route 1 goes across fields to avoid the A1
To keep with the golf theme of the ride we cycled past a great number of golf courses today. Unfortunately this only slowed us down further while Mrs Crusader pined for her clubs.
One of many northumberland courses we passed
We eventually got on to some proper roads and made it to Berwick but we had taken over two hours to cover less than 20 miles so I was beginning to again worry about what time we would be finishing tonight.
Coming into Berwick-upon-Tweed
Morale was raised shortly after this as we crossed into Scotland and started to feel more confident of reaching our journey's end. However Mrs Crusader took some persuading to stop for the iconic picture as it was on a hill so she don't want to stop. I sometimes worry where her priorities lie.
We had made it to Scotland!
Apart from a few leg sapping hills, and another tumble for Chris (guess whose fault that was?) the final drama of the morning came when I persuaded her to take a shortcut that would involved a 10 metre section straight down the A1 (single carriageway bit) because she was already complaining of jelly legs she reluctantly agreed on this high risk approach.
Cycling on the A1 for nearly 10 metres
Twenty seconds later we were off it again, without actually seeing a car, and with hearts pumping and adrenaline flowing we cycled the last few miles to our very late mid morning stop (at just after 1:00pm).
Todays mid morning stop in the early afternoon
I had once again delivered the requisite sea view that Mrs Crusader requires so with decent food and drinks this could easily become my winner of the best cafe anywhere on National of cycle route 1 competition.
You could see the sea from the outdoor seating area
We decided to sit out in the sun to make the most of the scenery before I went inside to check out the cake selection. As this was Scotland they don't seem to have any of the traditional big 5 sponge cakes but instead they just melt down their favourite chocolate bars, add biscuit and more sugar and serve these instead. We went for the crunchy slice and mint aero tray bake. Mrs Crusader thought this approach was marvellous so bought some Malteaser slice for later and made we award a high effective cake selection (ECS) mark.
No cakes but sweetie based tray bakes
Sadly my hot chocolate was again a poor Cadbury one while Chris's Mocha was fairly good so all in all Ebbcarrs was good but no cigar and into second place.
Drinks plus swet based tray bakes
Still way behind schedule then the next part of the ride would be tough as we had the longest climb of the whole trip, starting from sea level at the cafe and eventually getting to over 220m after a couple of miles. It didn't start too well when Mrs Crusader announced she would be walking the first steep bit out of the village to help her mint aero slice go down.
Walking up from the cafe by the sea
The ride up was even harder than expected as it was directly into a very strong wind and by the time we got to the top the gusts were bringing us to a virtual stand still. I suggested a sing song might help and immediately launched into a medley of tunes from the sound of music, but apparently it didn't.
Longest climb of the week
I was very impressed that Chris dug in and kept going all the way up. At the top I pointed out St Andrews in the distance on the other side of the forth. She suggested we hire a boat to go across rather than continue with all this cycling nonsense. I agreed but only if it was a pedalo and the deal was off.
First view of St Andrews in the distance
Fortunately things started to flatten out a bit until we made it to our planned lunch time stop in Dunbar at 3:00pm.
Final stop of the day
Once again there were a number of melted sweets in the cake selection as well as some proper cakes too so a very high ECS score. I had rhubarb and custard cake and Chris chocolate cake. As Grazes was a chocolate and coffee house I expected high things from my drink but their standard hot chocolate offering was surprisingly weak, as was Chris's Mocha, although my cake was excellent. 
For some reason drink came in a jar shaped mug?
Grazes had still scored well and the nice waitress also gave us a donation for World Bicycle Relief which was very much appreciated.

It was now back on the road for the final 25 miles where fortunately we found some long stretches of cycle path to help make up some time. However as it was still very windy so Mrs Crusader took full advantage of my wind sheltering service and tucked in behind. The gesture was never returned. By now the only word I could get out of her was 'brutal'.
Cycling in my slipstream
It was a real slog as we crossed inland and then back to the sea for a final stretch.
Final stretch along the coast to Musselburgh
We made up a lot of time on the last leg and arrived just before dark but on our knees and ready for food and rest. We decided to pass on clubbing in Musselburgh tonight so as to be ready for the final destination tomorrow with glory now in our grasp.
Outside the Musselburgh Premier inn
If you would like to encourage Chris to keep going to St Andrews you can make a donation at her World Bicycle Relief page where you can also find out more about the charities great work in Africa. 

Mrs Crusader's cycling progress dashboard after day 7

Tiredness
Mood
Saddle Soreness
Confidence of finishing
Totally shattered 
Relieved 
Moderate it's the rest that hurts
Cautiously optimistic 
Tomorrows Weather forecast is
tomorrows forecast
Today's route


Cafe ratings for cafes reviewed on National Cycle route 1
Cafe
Hot Choc Quality
Guest Hot Drink Quality
Effective Café Selection
Cake Taste Quality
Atmosphere and Ambiance
Total
Post office Guist
9.5
7.75
3.75
7.5
6.5
7.00
Thaxtons Coffee Shop
7
6
7.5
7.5
7
7.00
Caffe Aurora 
5
3
8.5
7.5
6.5
6.20
Haven cafe
5.5
7
3
6.5
7
5.80
Jossals cafe
7.0
7.5
4
8.0
6
6.50
Honey Pot cafe
6.5
6
5.5
7.5
7
6.50
Burton Agnes Hall
7.5
9
7
7.5
8.0
7.80
Francis tearoom

7
6
7.5
7.5
7.00
Cacau Brazilian Patisserie 
6.5
8.5
8
8.0
6.5
7.50
Lookout cafe 
5
7
5.5
7.25
9.5
6.85
Cafe Berterolli
5
8
8
7
7
7.00
Shoreline cafe
6.5
7
7
8.5
8.75
7.55
Ebbcarrs cafe
5
7.5
8.25
8
9.25
7.60
Grazed chocolate and coffee house
6
6
8.75
8
7.5
7.25















Stats (Mrs Crusader)

Miles
Average Speed
Hours on bike
Meters climbed
Bawburgh- Kings Lynn
61.1
12.0
5:04
854
Kings Lynn - Woodall Spa
63.1
13.5
4:39
89
Woodall Spa- Beverley
75.9
12.4
6:06
740
Beverley - Whitby
75.3
11.2
6:41
889
Whitby- South Shields 
80.3
9.8
8:08
1206
South Shields to Lindisfarne 
82.1
11.1
7:20
770
Lindisfarne to Musselburgh 
76.7
10.2
7:27
1179
Day 8




Overall
514.5
11.3
45:25
4957

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