Sunday, 21 October 2012

Pasty Presto, Stratford-upon-Avon

I have always thought of this place as a sort of posh Greggs as it is essentially a purveyor of pasties. It is only ever a stop off point for me as the seating inside is the ubiquitous high stool and table combo and, for someone my size, there is no elegant or graceful means to ascend what are, in fact, higher seats than normal. Outside is better with the standard aluminium chairs and tables; but be warned. That far down Henley Street it is not quite so comfortable to sit outside as it is at the establishments nearer the Birthplace. Its proximity to the Post Office and Lakeland mean that the flow of human traffic on either side of you can be a little intense. Crawling cars and taxi drop-offs can cause the pedestrians to funnel through the space between you and the shop - and, trust me, it can be damned irritating.

Think of it then, as a place that lives up to its name as a quick stop. Everything is freshly baked and the smell is always inviting, one of the few places in town where you can smell the coffee brewing in there from the street. It certainly serves a decent coffee. My latte was robust, very strong with an intense aftertaste. They also do the best croissants in town. Most of the places that offer croissants tend to serve ones that are more like bread in their texture, a dense mixture that is chewy and slightly dry. These are made of proper flaky pastry, very crumbly inside with a crisp, ever so slight crunch on the outside. Unfortunately, the price is a whopping £1.50 for eat in, and an unacceptable £1.10 to take away. That's half the price of your coffee.

This place should also claim the prize for the best conversation I ever overheard. Two elderly ladies seated behind me and the opening banter ran as follows:

'So how's it going with you then, m'duck?'


Latte: *****
Access: *****

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