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If you’re in a particular town, where should you head for good food and coffee at reasonable prices?


Not as easy as you’d think to find good food and coffee in Bath. But these ones are the best:

Supper and Sunday lunches; Chequers (River’s Street) – great for a town-centre, varied (gastro) pub lunch menu and delicious suppers. Nice medium-sized interior: Georgian windows, large old tables. Vegetarian Sunday roasts. King William (on the London Road) never fails to serve incredibly delicious food, is cosy inside – and has a good wine list too. I’d add in the Hare and Hounds too here – on the way out of town on the Lansdown Road as there is plenty of parking so it’s very easy to nip to- incredible views, space for children to run off energy away from your nice lunch, and very large, nicely-designed space.

Best everyday coffee: Jika Jika (George Street) – spacious, great tables for working, simple, good food too – did I mention the breakfasts (the best in Bath)? the cakes (that chocolate and Guinness cake)? the lovely lunches (scrumptious Haddock Chowder)? addictive flat whites.

At the other end of town in Kingsmead Square you’ll find Society Cafe with its cool interior with beautiful retro road bikes hanging on the wall, contemporary artworks on the walls and a host of independent magazines and unusual design, photography and cycling books available for browsing. Very nice flat whites, a vast range of tasty cakes and Cinnamon Toast’s perfect macaroons. The staff have recently been given rather nice Charge road bikes for commuting.

Colonna & Smalls – (near Queen Square)  boutique coffee shop with a specialist approach to coffee. Come here to taste the result of coffee experiments – there is a kind of coffee-lab at the end of the bar. Offering many intriguing varieties and unbeatable expertise, this is one for coffee connoisseurs. Nice light interior, great railway station benches, small garden, and homemade flapjack too



Best all-rounder: Doric Tavern, 15 Market Street, just behind main train station

Best coffee: Kilimanjaro (apparently)

National Gallery of Modern Art has a very nice cafe – and you can sit outside.


The Lido – tucked away between Whiteladies Road and Clifton – is a very special place. A Peter Greenaway ‘Drowning by Numbers’ visual with absolutely delicious inventive food – and incredible ice cream. Wonderful.

The Thali Cafe – very yummy, very cheap Indian food.

Taste at St. Nicolas Market and the Portuguese stall opposite for amazing and authentic custard tarts (£1 each)

Oz, The Triangle (off Park Street) – lovely Turkish food at great prices, right in town


Britons Arms, Elm Hill – I’ve been eating and lounging around here since I was a small child.

The Bicycle Shop cafe on St Benedicts Street is lovely — total lounge-fest of a place.

If you yearn for fish and chips then head for one of the best on Stafford Street or try the Grosvenor Fish Bar in the centre of town on Pottergate (haunt of my misspent youth) .



Best all-rounder (but difficult to get table – ring a week in advance): Andrew Edmunds, Lexington Street

Moro, Exmouth Market

Bedford & Strand, off Strand, near Covent Garden

Natural Kitchen, Marylebone High Street

Ottolenghi, Upper Street, Islington

Brindisa, South Kensington (near S. Ken tube)

Best coffee and teatime

Monmouth Coffee Company in Covent Garden/ Shaftesbury Ave; Borough Market (they sell the BEST decaf coffee in Britain – buy some to take home)

Market Cafe, Smithfield (lovely English teatime treats too)

Maison Bertaux, Greek Street, Soho – obviously – for best buns and cakes in Britain

LRB (London Review Books Bookshop) cafe, near British Museum

Villandry (Gt Portland Street, near Oxford Circus)


Riverford Field Kitchen for lunch feasts – everyone smiling especially when the 8 varieties of pudding are mentioned

The Seahorse, Dartmouth for a blow-out local fish supper – Mitch Tonks’ new restaurant and wonderful. Also his laid-back Rockfish resturant (and takeaway)  for traditional English seafood from pints of prawns to fish and chips

Cafe Alf Rescos, Dartmouth for best breakfasts and coffee in the whole of Devon – if not the South-West.

Devon Guild, Bovey Tracy – five minutes off the A38 between Exeter and Plymouth – perfect for a quick tea break or lunch.

Blacks, Chagford – has this the most delicious deli food in England – possibly – really really lovely quiches and soups. Not much space to eat-in.


North Norfolk

Meanwhile if you have any recommendations please let me know.

One Comment leave one →
  1. Judy Barratt permalink
    September 20, 2010 7:16 pm

    One for London: If you’re talking great coffee and great breakfasts … especially the pastries (oh, the pastries), you have to head to Princi on Dean Street, Soho. Divine.

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