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/

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Wednesday 22 June 2022

Coffee duel. (Cannells by the River, Reedham)

Cannells by the River


Mon-Sat 08:00-5:00, Sun 9:00-4.00


Now the sun is out again I thought it was time to head off on a cycle cafe review and with the wind from the East for a change it was a chance to go out that way. I decided I should visit Reedham as I hadn't been since the cup cakes cafe shut many years ago. Its now reopened as Cannells by the River.

I gathered some cycling guests to join me but there was only MickMike(the man with two names, Old School cyclist Dom and fellow cycleparkruncyclist Mark available who are all blokes. This obviously meant that instead of the normal leisurely chatting we got into an imaginary race with added commentry about peletons, breakaways, bridging etc. 

The race to Reedham in full swing

After a hetic dash down the Loddon road, with many breakaway attempts, then the peleton was all back together as we entered town. But what was this, lining the side of the road was a real cycling crowd who had obviously heard about our imaginary race and had come to cheer us through Loddon. We were all very excited, until Old School cyclist Dom realised it was actually the queue for the bus.

Undeterred we sped further east until we arrived at the ferry terminal at Reedham ready for our crossing.

As always I booked an outside cabin and we settled in for the cruise.

Enjoying the river crossing 

Once in Reedham we had a dilemma. I won't name names (but Gary you know who you are) said the coffee was better at the post office tearoom but better cake selection at Cannells. I deided to opt for the cake selection but will be returning soon to test the post office tearoom out as well.

Outside Cannells

The cake selection didn't dissapoint as we sat by the river enjoying the lovely day. 

Cake selection 

The cakes and drinks soon arrived. They were nice cakes and the drinks were fine but both the hot chocolate and coffess were abit on the weak side so it will be intersting to find out how the post office does next time. However I would still recommend a visit.

The way back was equally delightful as myself and Mark chalked up another few miles training for our attempt to cycle and run the 10 new parkruns in Norfolk that have started since we first did the challenge back in 2018. Sadly Mark re agitated his achilles injury on the ride meaning we have once again had to postpone the 1st ride on the challenge until the end of July. So Mark won't be invited on any more training rides until then.


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Click link to download 41 mile Norwich Reedham ferry loop gpx file for your GPS

Sunday 5 June 2022

Tour de Gateaux stage 2 to Hunstanton (Apple Cafe, West Acre)

Apple Cafe,

West Acre,

Tue-Sun 9.30-4.30

Highly Recommended

After the excitement of the first part of the Tour de Gateaux at the start of May (see Tour de Gateaux stages 1 and 2) it was time for part 2 of the race.

This time we went from Norwich to near Hunstanton and back. It was a chance to visit some old favourites plus try out a new cafe. 

The day started with worried faces on the driveway of Crusader Towers as the weather forecast predicted heavy showers all day. Despite making me look like a dork (can I say dork or does that get me cancelled, to be honest I don’t even know what one is) I decided to start with my waterproof over trousers on to save time for when the inevitable drenching started. Everyone else donned their waterproof jackets.

Worried faces preparing for a soaking

However shortly into the ride it was clear it was actually quite warm so jackets were removed again although I kept my trousers on. I knew that the rain gods won’t waste their effort trying to penetrate my smart trousers.

Still dry we pushed on to our first stop at the excellent Guist Post Office.

Outside Guist Cafe still in my waterproof trousers and still no rain

Sadly there is no longer any outdoor seating area but there was a nice indoor table that could accommodate all 6 riders on todays stage. As you may recall you not only get points for winning a stage but for cake eating too. Four of us caked today each getting a point but I now moved into a 2 point lead over everyone else.

Some excellent cake at Guist

With the Sun now shining, but still in my waterproof trousers, we headed off to our next planned stop at Walsingham. On the way we passed a big gatehouse in the middle of nowhere. It is the sort of place you wouldn’t want to knock on the door of if your car (or bike) had broken down at night in a heavy rain storm. But ours hadn't, so we didn't.

Once at Little Walsingham we went to Nortons cafe at the shrine of our lady who is famous for downing miracles and stuff. We ordered tea for 3 but they just filled the teapots up with hot water. However when we poured them into the cups the hot water had turned to tea. 

Excellent tea stop at Nortons in Little Walsingham

Now refreshed and still dry it was the final push over some lumpy ground to our final destination.

It was starting to cloud over as we approached our Hotel

When we got to the hotel, still dry I had a dilemma as if to remove my magic water proof trousers or not. One of our party, Mike, had got the date of the trip wrong and once he had realised then there was no room at our inn. He had managed to secure lodgings in a stable at Hunstanton 5 miles away. However if I was to remove my trousers before he got there then the no rain spell would be broken and he would obviously get a proper soaking. On the other hand I wanted to shower and relax so it was trousers off and once removed we were treated to a huge thunderstorm. I think Mike will be checking the tour dates more carefully in future.
The heavens opened once I had removed my water proof trousers at our Hotel

In terms of the stage I obviously won as I forgot to mention the finish line was just past the hotel. The other competitors couldn't understand why I had cycled past our accommodation when they had stopped. My how they didn't care when I explained their error as they looked at me like I was some mad bloke having his own fantasy cycle race.

Day two would take in a new cafe, the Apple at West Acre which was the main purpose of the trip. I was hoping it won’t disappoint 

With forecast promising a dry day I decided to keep waterproof trousers off, but would this obviously caused us to get wet later in the day.

Pedals down was at an ambitious 9:15 but as always breakfast was over leisurely followed by pre ride faffing meaning we were lucky to get away by 9:30. Today was a longer day and would be my first 100km Grand Fondo since my knee op (which I may have mentioned in previous posts, a lot). 

About to set off after much faffing

The ride started with a trip past Sandringham to see the Queen. Apparently she was too busy for a chat as she was preparing for her Jubilee thing the next day. So we set off again over a few bumpy bits as we sailed through North West Norfolk on the way to the Apple Cafe at West Acre.

The Queen was a bit busy for a chat

When we arrived fellow Tour de Gateaux competitors Barry and Helen and their tandem were already here drinking coffee and eating cake. You may remember they had been disqualified for mechanical doping in the first stages of the race. They would be disqualified again today for taking a 10 mile shortcut, I'm not sure if they are taking my event seriously.

Outside the Apple Cafe

The Apple Cafe is in the garden centre but has a very nice setting with a pleasant outdoor seating area.

Outdoor seating area
The cake selection was also good and the drinks scored well (except for Andrews tea which apparently didn't have enough tanning being a too posh a brand, although he is notoriously hard to please).
A good cake selection at the Apple Cafe

On the other hand he thought his chocolate and raspberry brownie was fantastic and defiantly the star cake although the others were good too. This was the stop most people caked on so no changes in the tour cake points competition.

Excellent cakes encouraging much caking by the group

The Apple cafe didn't disappoint and I highly recommend a visit.

From here we had wind behind for the final push back to the finish line. There was still time for a quick stop at Tabnabs cafe in Mattishall for a bit more cake and then heads down for the finishing line. Obviously without my water proof trousers on it did rain on us during this section, but that was only to be expected.

Final push back to Norwich

The finish came at the top of Col de Cellar House slip road which was a tricky ramp at the end of a long day but no one was going to beat me today, especially as they weren't bothered, as I made a final effort to the top and another stage win under my belt.

The next stage will be at the end of June as we head to Newmarket where the route is sure to favour the sprint teams.


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