‘You could always do a Brighton café review if the situation arises,’ reads Adam’s text. I immediately romanticize the idea of myself as a café detective, accepting an assignment abroad. On walking through the streets of Brighton, I find myself inundated with good looking cafes. I want to sample them all and acquire the biggest coffee and tea crash I have ever known.
The drizzle is rapidly turning into a steady pummelling, as Chelsea and I concur that the place that has toasties for two pounds is the place to be at this particular time. Ella’s Yummy Delights is a lot cosier than it seems from the outside. All the tables are filled, and we join a queue of various people on their lunch break. The woman behind the counter rushes back and forth, dropping in tea bags and wrapping up toasties. She resembles a mum, preparing her children’s lunch boxes on a busy Thursday morning. This is further reinforced by an order from a middle-aged man sitting at a table, ‘and can I have pickle with my ham toastie, I like pickle with it…’
I order a bacon and brie one, all the while distracted by the gargantuan cakes on the counter which I vow to sample later. The woman takes our orders while fulfilling other requests, all the while apologizing for the delay, but no one minds waiting. Rather, they use the time to catch up on each other’s lives.
I’m rather pleased that our table has cupcake shaped salt and pepper shakers, and the twee objects just keep coming. A cupcake themed teapot with a little bird on the lid, a cow shaped milk jug. I’m slightly perturbed, yet fascinated by the way the milk flows from its mouth as Chelsea pours it into her tea. The toasties are good, homely and reasonably priced. Young business people at the next table jokingly contemplate not returning to work, but do so anyway, leaving the café empty after the lunch time rush. I’m beginning to come down from a tea induced caffeine high, which is the combined fault of myself and the rather large twee pot. I think this is the perfect time for cake, as the cow jug stares at me, a drop of milk quivering at its mouth.
Chris’ Final Thought
2.50 is a rather good price for such a monolith, dwarfing the plate that it’s served on. My similarly dwarfed fork slices its way down through the various layers of cream, light sponge and coffee soaked sponge. The cakes are all made on the premises, and that comes across through its light freshness. It seems to hold the balance between a subtle sweetness, and the bitterness of an Americano that I often rely on for daily lucidity. I’m just over halfway through when I decide that I must postpone my enjoyment of this cake for I am well and truly replete. Chelsea has already given up on her chocolate and plum cake (the plums have been soaked in vodka no less). We get them to go, the woman behind the counter, who may or may not be Ella says, ‘I was going to ask if you didn’t enjoy them, but then I wouldn’t believe you as you’ve finished three quarters of it.’ Yes, with cakes such as these, one must be a stoic eater, for such delights on the palette are worth the nausea induced by stuffing one’s face.