There were dark clouds overhead as I arrived in Tarporley. It was Brexit day so I wondered if it was an omen and feared the worst as I entered the Chestnut Cafe.

It was lunchtime on a Friday, so I imagined a packed cafe but was pleased it was only half-full. I had no idea what their normal clientele are like these days but a good smattering of the over-60s made me feel spring-chicken like. The eczema covered waitress that greeted me was pleasant in contrast to the friendly-as-a-bailiff one that used to be here in its old guise as Cafe No.6 over four years ago.

With a new name and owner, it’s had a makeover making the counter more open and creating a bit more space. There are now posh mirrors, fancy blinds, and a few decent items of artwork on the walls. The vast door is appealing as you get the feeling you are in someone’s former living room (someone quite wealthy –  after all this is Tarporley).

Wooden floorboards and tables along with dull leather upholstered chairs hardly excite though; some of the chairs look like they were stolen from a Cheshire farmer’s kitchen.

The menu has a decent array of breakfasts, sandwiches with a few specials on the board. There are some GF options including cakes and a few interesting items on the specials board including a potato cake stack with black pudding and haggis.

I ordered a Kimbo Italian latte which was fine though not as good as I’d just has in Verona the week before though. Oh and a jacket potato with beans which was fine but in an awkward to eat pot and I am messy enough (my shirts are a kind of dirty wearable art-installation).

A group of women walked in looking like the grandmothers of the Real Housewives of Cheshire and must have done about fifteen air-kisses (maybe wise with this coronavirus around). They then talked about their son’s skiing trip, the NTA awards and their sister’s carbuncle. Or was it their sister’s uncle. Either way is was riveting conversation.

Wifi worked well and music was on but too quiet (unless you have an ear trumpet which some of the older punters do).

By the way the waitresses are very attractive and I nearly spilt my beans at some point!! Sorry, I’m being rude again.


Verdict: 3.5/5

Good: Food good, pleasant atmos, friendly eye candy.

Bad: Could have more interesting furniture. Music too quiet.