Life is always good when you find a hidden gem. And in the centre that pays tribute to the work of intrepid explorer David Livingstone, there lies one well worth discovering.
The David Livingstone Centre is a fabulous place. Situated in huge, perfectly manicured grounds, the museum, housed in a former textile mill, tells the story of the famous missionary. And next door, the cafe is carving its own small piece of history too – as one of the best little eateries in the area.
Decked out in colourful fabric bunting, it’s a light and airy space with plenty of windows, guaranteeing a good view wherever you sit. I stop in on a weekday morning and it’s looking like a struggle to get a table. Those not taken have “reserved” signs on, ready for the lunchtime rush.
But I’m in luck. A smiling waitress shows me over to a free one at the back of the cafe. With the sun streaming in and a picture-perfect view of the surrounding greenery, it’s a great little spot to whittle a few hours away. The breakfast menu is small but perfectly formed. With breakfast rolls, omelettes and french toast, there’s plenty to choose from.
After a long walk around the grounds, I’m famished so go for the Livingstone breakfast…a hearty feast of bacon, sausage, egg, black pudding, potato scone, beans and toast.
Every single bite goes down a treat.
Despite struggling for space, it would be rude not to check out the cakes. And anyone with a sweet tooth will find themselves spoiled for choice. Lemon drizzle, cupcakes, rocky road, empires…once you take a peek behind the counter, you just have to find room for something.
Of course, it’s a scone for me. A plain one. They’re all huge so I ask for the smallest one. Served with clotted cream and jam, it’s just perfect. Firm on the outside, with a light, fluffy inside. With a hot latte on the side, I devour every last crumb.
Settling the bill, I set off to explore and find out more about Livingstone. And I have to say I’m thankful for him – and this precious little cafe built in his honour.
Perfectly formed. 10/10
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