Seated at formica topped tables and chairs you would expect to find in a dentist’s waiting room, the decor isn’t what’s important at the Coffee House Cafe in Withington. A constant flow of customers file in and out of the door, some even sitting outside on Copson Street, enjoying the morning sun.
A member of staff from the Co-op opposite is greeted by name and orders breakfast for the team. The staff at the Coffee House offer to bring it over once it’s ready.
I visited the Coffee House Cafe in Withington on a Thursday morning just after 9am to enjoy a breakfast for less than a fiver, a rare find in Manchester these days. I’d read good things on TripAdvisor about this five star cafe and wanted to try the non nonense food.
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The most mentioned aspect of this eatery is the price, closely followed by its location as the place which the famed Marcus Rashford mural is painted upon. However, this piece of art only does more for the café and brings customers in.
Their menu shows sandwiches starting at £2.50, with breakfast options ranging from £3, for the ‘Veggie Barm Haystack’ to £5.15 for the ‘Village Monster Breakfast’. For traceypK3067HQ, visiting the café was a case of being in the right place, at the right time.
They wrote: “I visited the cafe because I wanted to see the Marcus Rashford mural. I had a lovely jacket potato with salad. Excellent value for money and friendly service. I will be back.”
This review matches up to all 13 other reviews of the Coffee House Cafe, which is a clear winner for locals, travelers and workmen.
I ordered the ‘lighter alternative breakfast’, a full English breakfast but on the smaller side. The meal includes two slices of bacon, a sausage, a perfectly runny and golden over easy egg, two slices of beautifully buttery Hovis toast, some fried mushrooms and a choice of beans or tomatoes – or both, I chose beans.
I placed my order at around 9:20am and I had my breakfast at half past, my plate was clean before quarter to. The bacon was perfectly crisp, and the beans were still saucy without being overdone.
While the mushrooms weren’t anything to write about, the toast and egg really was. The egg had the perfect level of sausage dippability to it and the toast was wonderfully buttered.
Too many breakfasts have been ruined upon receiving unbuttered toast and, personally, I will not stand for it. Bread deserves butter.
Are you being served?
At this cafe, orders are taken at the counter, card is accepted and the food is brought to the table. Everything is quick and the staff are friendly, offering help with the menu and cracking jokes with children.
The Coffee House Café, it is clear, is a true part of Withington as locals pop in and out, order to go and stay for a chat. Copson Street has its own feel, and this cafe is in the middle of the community.
What’s the damage?
For a lighter alternative breakfast and a can of pop, there’s change from a fiver. The meal and drink only cost £4.55.
Similarly, if you’re a fan of a classic cup of tea, it will only set you back £1. At alternative breakfast establishments, a similar meal will have you stumping up much more.
By 10am, there’s a queue for orders, the front window is advertising local businesses, charity opportunities and how to help in the community and a toast machine that wouldn’t be out of place at an ‘all you can eat hotel breakfast’ whirs in the background, perfectly toasting fluffy white bread.
It’s a true cafe of the community. Offering simple, delicious meals at prices you wouldn’t believe in 2022. The decor is dated with black and white photo-images of London, New York and in one corner some brightly colored psychedelic apes, but even Kevin McCloud would ignore the decorations and instead enjoy the classic brekkie, laughter and chatter of the Coffee House Café.
It’s the perfect greasy spoon breakfast diner. I’m sure Marcus Rashford is happy to be immortalized on his wall.
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George Holan is chief editor at Plainsmen Post and has articles published in many notable publications in the last decade.