Tuesday, 22 April 2014

Express cafe Tiptree

Independent living

Express cafe/restaurant Tiptree

This weekend's escapades took me into Feering for the phine box library and then a trip to Tiptree for a visit to the ingeniously named Cheap Shop.
Despite not being as cheap as a pound shop and stocking haberdashery and craft things the shop was stuffed with customers and I was advised 'This isn't busy'
Good to see in the days of supermarkets and thank you Great British Sewing Bee for reviving existing outlets and encouraging many more new ones to open.
Minimal purchases later and it was time in this very small village to find a lunch spot open on a bank holiday weekend.
Choice was limited to one newly opened deli like cafe touting for business outside and Express Cafe with a reasonable amount of people inside.
The Express is an apparently unambitious cafe with the most adventurous main meal being lasagne and on the dessert side some imaginatively named ice cream concoctions.
We sat down and waited for a menu to arrive next to an uncleared table and another table with a couple deciding from their menu.
A waitress arrived to take the couple's menu and then disappeared. Another waitress cleared the table next to usand disappeared. After a ten minute wait a menu was delivered and we were asked if we would like to order drinks before the waitress returned to take our order. Tea and coffee rapidly appeared and our (boring) order for two traditional breakfasts was taken at 12.20 having checked it was still available at this time.
By now the restaurant was busier but still a fair few tables remained empty.
As time passed and tea and coffee disappeared we began to be a bit agitated. On the next table the lady had waited around half an hour for a jacket potato, which was delivered with an apology for tardiness.
Coffee now cold we discussed the possibility of obtaining a top up rather than paying an additional £2 for coffee to go with the food when it did eventually arrive.
12.45 and 2 standard breakfasts arrived with no explanation as to the delay. So we asked if the coffee cup could simply be topped up?
A flummoxed waitress went away to ask her boss. We could have a new coffee at £2 because the one on the table was nearly finished. But we've waited all that time so it has now gone cold and isn't great to go with the breakfast. Away she went again only to return and advise us that if we wanted the drinks to go with the food we should have said so in the first place.
Ultimately the food was fine, the waitress was just doing her job with no prior experience of people asking for top ups. The management did not come over to explain or determine our issues.
It wouldn't have been an issue if there was a note to say there was a delay, a jote to say order your drinks with your food or a friendly 'oops we're slow, we'll top up the cup'
Would we visit again?
No, we're off to the new deli restaurant next time.
Anybody else had similar experiences? Timing with drinks and food seems to be an issue in several places, is it just to get the additional couple of pounds? 

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