Lets find a Cafe (or tearoom)

Lets find a Cafe (or tearoom)

Locations of reviewed cafes

I

Friday, 2 December 2016

South of the Border. (The Granary, Snape)

The Granary Tearooms,
Snape,
Opening times Mon-Sat 10:00-17:00, 
Sun 10:00-16:30
As I have now visited over 200 cafes and tearooms it's not surprising that I'm beginning to run out of easy pickings and now need to go further afield on my cafe cycle rides in order to find new places to review. Therefore today I decided it was time to grab my passport and go over the border into Suffolk. An early start was needed to make the most of the available daylight which put today's cycling guest Andrew (who is notoriously hard to please) into a particularly bad mood as he had had to set off an hour earlier than me in order to drive to Crusader Towers. Once he arrived we loaded the bikes into my car and set off to the border.

An hour later we had sucessful got through security and customs on the way to our start point which was the small village of Walpole on Sustrans cycle route 42. I was already exhausted as on the drive down Andrew ranted about the latest national and international news stories and there was a lot to cover. Normally if I get overwhelmed by his outbursts I can cycle off but this isn't an option in the car where I was a captive rantee.

It was nice to be on different roads for a change and we first headed off to Dunwich on the Suffolk coast where we went down to the beach to take the ubiquitous photo. Over the years I have taken the same photo many times and had started to notice that there is always exactly the same aesthetically pleasing red boat in everyone.  I now suspect that it is not a real boat but one placed there by the Suffolk tourist board to attract unsuspecting visitors like me. This sort of cheap scam would never happen in Cromer I thought.
Standard  Dunwich beach photo with pretend red boat
You may remember that as well as being the self appointed number one cycle cafe reviewer (in the Norfolk area) I'm also a great fan of ruined Abbeys and have a spreadsheet of ratings to prove it (see ruined Abbey off). I was therefore very excited when we went past Leiston ruined Abbey as I could add it to my growing list (currently standing at 3) of ruined Abbeys I have cycled past. I have to admit that this was my least favourite ruined Abbey to date as the ruins weren't symmetrical enough for my tastes, although nothing my sledge hammer couldn't resolve if English Heritage want to give me a ring.
Leiston ruined Abbey which needs some better symmetry to move up my ruined Abbey league table
From here it was down to Snape Maltings to review today's cycle cafe; The Granary Tea rooms. Snape Maltings is famous for having a concert hall in the middle of nowhere and as a result a whole collection of shops, galleries and restaurants have grown up around it.
Lots of  shops, galleries, restaurants and a concert hall can be found at Snape Maltings
The Granary tea room is one such outlet and could be found right at the end through a tiny door.
Outside the Granary tearooms before trying to squeeze in through the tiny white door
Cycling guest cycling top tip no 57. If going into a tearoom based in an old building with tiny doors consider keeping your bicycle helmet on to avoid a nasty bump on the head.

Unfortunately I had failed to follow cycling guest cycling top tip no 57 and was still in a bit of a daze as I went to check out the cakes so that I could award the effective cake selection (ECS) score. The selection appeared good on quantity but a lot of it was slice and biscuit based with a lack of big sponge cakes which added up to a good, if not outstanding, ECS mark. 
Cake selection but only two sponge cakes
I opted for carrot cake and Andrew went for Bakewell slice with his capuchino. We then selected seats in the large indoor seating area as it was too cold to sit outside.
Large indoor seating area
Andrew was in his most hard to please mood as he wasn't happy with his coffee (too weak) or Bakewell slice which he felt had seen better days. I, on the other hand, thought my hot chocolate was a good one and my carrot cake was nice as well.
Cakes and drinks
Overall The Granary tearooms had performed reasonable well although I think the tearoom is aimed more at people visiting the whole Maltings complex as their primary destination and not the other way round. 

From here we returned to Walpole on Sustrans route 41 and both agreed it had been an excellent route and, subject to obtaining visas, we should come back to Suffolk more often. 

Scores
Hot Choc Quality
Guest Hot Drink Quality
Effective Cake Selection
Cake Quality
Ambiance and Atmosphere
Café Rating
7.0
5.0
6.5
6.5
7.0
6.40
Route
Click here to download 37 mile Walpole Snape loop gpx file to your gps