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

Tuesday 10 January 2017

Anyone for tennis (Eaton Park Cafe, Norwich)

Eaton Park Cafe,
Opening times Mon-Fri 09:00-17:00,
Sat-Sun 8:30-6:00
You may recall that regular cycling guests Barry and Helen had recently got a new tandem (see So long old friend) so I had arranged a short ride so that I could see it in action. We had arranged to meet up at the Casitor St Edmunds crossroads with Chris (Mrs Crusader) as my other cycling guest for the day. I made sure we got there early so that I could take a picture of them arriving on their new machine.

As I saw them approaching I got my phone ready clicked away. But what was this, they had turned up on the same old tandem they had always used. I was very disappointed and nearly called the ride off there and then but I was curious to know why the new tandem wasn't making an appearance. Barry explained that his new tandem (or possible him) was a bit of a fair weather tart and didn't want to come out in the winter incase it got it's shiny new paint a bit dirty. He promised that it would make an appearance on the first nice spring day we have. I am begining to suspect they havent got a new tandem at all but time will tell.
Barry and Helen on their old tandem
Barry has always been very sniffy about reviewing cake and deliberately chooses to have a sausage roll on all of our cafe cycle rides so that he doesn't have to get involved in any of 'the cake rating nonsense'. In 2017 I was confident I had got around this issue and proudly told Barry that this year was the year of the sausage roll so he could be fully involved in finding the best one (see thing of the year). I was expecting Barry to be pleased and enthusiastic about this year's competition but I should have known better. He just said there was no point in doing the competition as he had already found the best sausage roll ever which was at a service station on the M5 in Gloucestershire. So that was that, the search for sausage roll of the year 2017 was over before it had really begun. Then I remembered that the rules state that you have to be able to cycle to the cafe to get the sausage roll and you can't cycle on a motorway. The search for sausage roll of the year 2017 was back on again.

Today's cafe came right at the end of our ride but the miles flew by as we continued to debate sausage roll rating criteria and in no time we were at the Eaton Park cafe in Eaton Park in Norwich.
Outside the Eaton Park cafe
The cafe is situated in the old victorian pavilion by the bandstand. I was worried it wouldn't be open at this time of year so was surprised that not only was it open seven days a week all year round but was also very busy today. The whole setup was very welcoming so I awarded a high atmosphere and ambiance mark.

There is also an outdoor seating area overlooking the tennis courts but we decided it was a bit cold to sit there today especially as there was no tennis action to enjoy.
Outdoor seating area overlooks the tennis courts
I checked out the cake selection but the only things on display were  scones and pastries. You had to rely on the cake selection blackboard to pick one of three cakes on offer,. This obviously impacted the effective cake selection (ECS) score.
Scones, pastries and cake selection blackboard
Much to mine and Barry's disappointment there were no sausage rolls on the menu so I went for chocolate and almond cake. Chris opted for orange and almond cake while Barry and Helen and their tandem just had coffee to avoid getting involved in any of 'the cake rating nonsense'.

Our drinks soon arrived in a nice selection of mugs and cups. For once Barry actually liked his cappuccino but Chris and Helen thought their Mocha's were not hot enough for really high marks. My hot chocolate was nice but didn't perform well on the hot part of the drink either.
Nice selection of drinks but could have been a bit hotter
I thought both our almond base cakes were excellent with the orange one being particularly good and I awarded a high cake taste quality (CTQ) rating.
Almond based cakes
Despite the lack of sausage rolls the Eaton Park cafe was a good relaxing stop and I recommend a visit especially for tennis fans.

Hopefully next time Barry and Helen join me as cycling guests they will be provide a new tandem and I'll provide the sausage rolls then we will all be happy. 

Scores based on 2 visits last on 6th April 2022
Hot Choc Quality
Guest Hot Drink Quality
Effective Cake Selection
Cake Quality
Ambiance and Atmosphere
Café Rating

Click here to dowload 25 mile Norwich Poringland loop GPX file for your GPS

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