I have passed Madame Waffle many times, and pass is what I do, not somewhere I would set foot in, gives every impression of being a chain fast food joint.
It therefore takes a lot of persuading for me to cross the threshold and enter.
The Little Bicycle Coffee Shop: They serve good coffee, excellent baristas, Square Mile Coffee, Standart.
The last two were the clincher. If they serve Square Mile Coffee, then they must know something about about coffee. Similarly if Standart in the coffee shop.
I was after Standart issue 5 and 6.
Even so, it was with great reluctance, it was a pleasant day, I wished to walk up The Strait and Steep Hill to Makushi. If nothing else, I may get a decent coffee.
Thus my expectations were low.
Walking through the door, I was pleasantly surprised, an excellent job has been done on the decor, exposed brick walls, wooden tables, a pleasant atmosphere. It looked every bit a quality coffee shop.
Maybe it was a coffee shop that served waffles.
As I walked in, Square Mile Coffee on sale.
No room, ok, we have a first floor.
I ordered a cappuccino.
I had not seen Standart. I asked.
They said it was on sale. I expected, like Makushi, to browse.
I did find Caffeine free to take away. I never knew it was free. But easy to see why. Patronising drivel, hacks paid to fill column inches.
The girl brought me Standart issue 7.
Do you have issue 5 and 6?
Off she went and came back with Standart issue 6. Sorry we do not have issue 5.
My cappuccino arrived. It was excellent. But then I expected no less with Square Mile.
On my way down, I bought Standart issue 6, £9.
This I queried, I can subscribe for four issues for 11 euros.
They were surprised, they order for resale and pay £9-17 each when they order ten for resale, to sell at a loss.
Something going very wrong. I then looked again, as something did not add up. Oops. To subscribe a single issue, which is then automatically renewed, 11 euros per issue, to subscribe four issues, which is automatically renewed, 40 euros. I thought it did not make sense 11 euros a single issue or four issues.
On leaving, I was asked had I seen the floor below?
No, I did not know there was a floor below.
Below, I found there was an undercroft, indicating the building much older than external looks would suggest, or built on the foundation of a much older building.
I was told there are tunnels connecting all these lower levels.
Whether true or not I do not know. Maybe an urban myth, as not something I have ever heard of.
Occasional live music and other events in the evening.
Today, I noticed a side door, leading direct to the tea rooms without having to pass through Ruddock’s. Something I have never noticed before.
I inquired in Ruddock’s. They said Henry’s too will be closing.
They blamed high car parking charges. This is not the problem The problem is they are selling rubbish.
Flag over The Stonebow flying half mast, a mark of respect for those killed yesterday afternoon during a terrorist attack in London.