This American restaurant and coffee shop in the heart of the town has been here a while now so it must be doing something right. After all, it’s one of the few buildings in the town that are not boarded up!
Inside it’s an explosion of Americana; the walls are adorned neigh caked with images of pop-stars, films and comic books, retro American enamel adverting and a couple of fairly impressive models of Batman and Kung Fu Panda upstairs (Betty Boop is downstairs on the counter).
The food is greasy and comforting (though not particularly American) and at a decent price. Their best sellers seem to be fry-ups and anything with chips and the diners seems to be perfectly happy. My bacon muffin was pretty good and followed by a decent steak so we were happy to although there are no gluten-free options. I had coffee which was not exactly ambrosial but was improved by an accompanying custard cream. Service was friendly and speedy though a little dopey at times – maybe the waitresses are on Spice (like the rest of the town)?
Motown boomed out from the speaker above us so we asked them to turned it down and they obliged eventually. Expect the odd scoundrel so check your belongings are safe. It’s not an accessible cafe with quite a few stairs and no lift.
I asked about the wifi and was told there is none in an unapologetic tone as if wifi is a new fangled thing that will never catch on. This was by an aged man who must have served in at least two Great Wars. Apparently though it’s OK if you are downstairs; you can access the wifi of the Lloyd’s bank opposite standing on a table one-legged whilst performing a Gregorian Chant. Oh how convenient for your customers!
We sat by a draughty in November near a single glazed window. The place is a little tatty in places with worn carpet downstairs, a few fading pictures and the furniture is a bit battered. The toilets are the worst things – cramped and smelling like a tramps ball-sac (last cleaned circa 2005). ‘Yakety Yak’ by The Coasters was playing as we left. How very apt.
Good: Food, prices, walls
Bad: Accessibility, toilets, wifi, volume